Movement and Breathing Control
Learning to move slowly about coral reefs is also one of the most essential of coral reef diving skills. Fishes and many other forms of marine life are extremely sensitive to underwater sound, a form of which is created by underwater moving objects such as a diver’s arms and legs.
Sudden movements will often trigger an alarm response in marine life, and you will not see nearly so many critters as you might otherwise. Sudden movements close to the reef can also lead to contact with the reef resulting in painful injuries for divers as well as reef habitat damage.
Likewise, practice (until it becomes habitual) to breathe from your regulator in a smooth, regular and controlled manner. As with sudden movements of the body, irregular, sudden, and/or strong exhalations of divers create unexpected underwater sounds that can be sensed at surprising distances by marine life.
Mastering these few simple coral reef diving skills will help you make the most of your personal exploration of coral reefs. Along with our recommended reef friendly diving practices, these skills will help protect both you and the reef environment. Our “Additional Resources” section contains our pick(s) for the best available books specific to improving your coral reef diving skills.