One of the most important concepts for both amateur and skilled scuba divers, buddy diving is a style of diving that requires any individual entering the water to do so with a partner. Partners are accountable for one another’s safety and overall diving experience. Though being responsible for another person’s physical wellness and enjoyment of a dive can feel overwhelming, there are several basic steps a diver can take to optimize the buddy relationship.
The buddy relationship should start long before partners get into the water. Any knowledgeable diver will perform multiple equipment checks ahead of a dive. Still, it is advisable for buddies to check each other’s gear before water entry.
Buddies must also remember to communicate and engage constantly, rather than turning a dive into a solo trip or competition. It is advisable to remain about two seconds away from one’s partner over the course of a dive. Instead of pulling away from a buddy or trying to dive deeper than a buddy feels comfortable with, partners should use their relationship to experience the wonders of diving as a team.
Finally, like any relationship, scuba diving buddies can expect their partnership to grow with time and effort. The more buddies dive together, the better understanding they will have of one another’s preferences and limitations, making for an optimal dive experience.