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    How Much Weight Do You Need For Scuba Diving

    August 12, 2021 2 min read

    How Much Weight Do You Need For Scuba Diving

    There is nothing like exploring the wonders of the ocean. However, you must always prioritise safety, and be equipped with the right gear - and that includes knowing the amount of weight you’ll need todescend and ascend safely during a dive. Learning how to precisely determine the amount of weight you carry pays off underwater.

    There are a few factors that you need to take into account with weight and it might change from dive to dive. But for the most part, it stays pretty common for most people. Astandard diving setup normally includes a 5mm wetsuit and 12L cylinder. So, you can roughly calculate what your weight is going to be based off the weight of these items.

    But there can be some variations, especially if you have your own weights, if you dive with a thicker or thinner wetsuit, if you've got a camera, etc. All of these factors might change the amount of weights you’ll need.

    Tips for calculating how much weight you need for scuba diving

    Test your buoyancy

    As a general rule, you can try this test to see how much weight you're going to have: at the surface with a mask, hold your breath (full breath of air). The water level should be sitting at about the midpoint when you have the optimum level of weight. That means you're neutrally buoyant.

    If you're doing that full breath of air on the surface and your head's going to be above the water, that means you're positively buoyant. It means you're going to have real buoyancy issues when you dive below the surface and get to any depth.

    Add in your wetsuit

    Generally speaking, if you've got a 5mm wetsuit and that's what you're used to diving in, you can work out what you need. It's normally about a fraction less than 10% of your body weight.

    Consider your tank

    The second thing to take into account is the type of cylinder you’re going to use. Steel and aluminum cylinders have different water displacement. It means that your buoyancy can change too. When changing to a different cylinder size or different material (steel vs aluminum) tank, always recheck your weight.

    Check different weight options

    When you're looking at weights you've got a few different options: standard style dive weights (usually 2 and 3lbs), precision weights (about 1kg or 500g).

    Some people prefer to get one single, large, block. However, you can get more precise weights if you go for small increments, giving you the ability to fine-tune how much you actually need to go diving.