Questions and Answers about SNUBA

SNUBA is a great way to experience being underwater with the sea life, while not taking on the risk, equipment and training needed for scuba diving.

Snuba DiversBy Jim Mayfield, president of Snuba International, Inc. (Own work)
[CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons Source URL

What exactly is SNUBA Diving?

SNUBA Diving is where you have a tank of air that floats on the top of the water.  You then utilize a hose of some length (let’s say 10 feet long) that delivers the air to you.  This allows you to stay underwater while still breathing easily.

Or… just imagine that you have a 10 foot long snorkel.

How does the air tank work?

A SNUBA set utilizes a regulator which acts as the gatekeeper to provide you with air.  You put your mouth around the regulator (just like you would with a snorkel) and breath normally in and out of the regulator.  When you inhale, the regulator let’s air pass down through the tube from the air tank into your mouth.  When you exhale, the regulator ejects your exhaled air into the water around you.  The regulator is just like a scuba regulator in it’s toughness – meaning water, spit, vomit, etc, is ejected from the regulator and is unable to travel up the air tube.

Can I buy a SNUBA set?

SNUBA is a privately owned system.  It is leased out to snorkeling tours and agencies and users are charged a rental fee for it’s use.

What is the minimum age?

8 years old

How deep can I go?

The exact depths depend on your destination.  Some locations have a 10 foot length restriction while others allow you to go up to 20 feet.  Check with your local snorkeling tour to see how deep you will be allowed to dive with your SNUBA gear.

How long does the air last?

Generally you will be able to stay under water for about 20-25 mins.  Experienced swimmers can help to lengthen this timeframe by practicing basic scuba diving air preservation principles.  Practice relaxed breathing, take slow deep breaths (instead of fast short breaths), etc.

Do I need to be physically fit?

It’s up to you.  How well can you handle swimming a distance underwater in a pool?  While SNUBA is more lenient in it’s physical requirements, you still need basic swimming strength and capabilities so as to not get trapped in currents, hurt against a reef, etc.  In addition the rental process will require you to go through a standard medical release form.

Can I fly after SNUBA?

One benefit of SNUBA over Scuba is that you do not descent to a low enough depth to accumulate nitrogen for flying to be a problem.  Therefore you are free to pursue your air travel needs without a mandatory cooling down period that is common with Scuba diver.

Where can I find more information?

Visit the official SNUBA site located at:

SNUBA is a registered trademark of SNUBA international, Inc.  All information on this article is for informational and review purposes only and should not be considered fact.  Visit the official SNUBA website for exact details on using and operating a SNUBA system.
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