Gone Outdoors

How to Breathe While Snorkeling

by Sports & Fitness Editor

Experience the beauty and wonders of underwater life while snorkeling at the surface in a relaxing weightless state. Using a snorkel is easy and is one of the best ways to get close to aquatic life without having to hire a boat or take scuba lessons.

Understand how a snorkel works. The snorkel is a mouthpiece and tube that fits comfortably in your mouth and extends above the water's surface so you can breathe without lifting your head out of the water. There are several varieties. Most snorkels come with a self-draining feature that allows the water to be drained with little effort.

Check for comfort and minimal breathing resistance. Put the snorkel in your mouth with the flange of the mouthpiece between your lips and teeth. The tube should fit along the front of your left ear. Take deep breaths to check for ease of breathing.

Attach your snorkel at the left side of your diving mask with the small rubber ring or clip that comes with the snorkel. Put on the mask and position the snorkel near the front of your left ear. The tube should be at the top of the back of your head. The muscles of your mouth should not have to hold the snorkel in place.

Get in the water. While snorkeling, you should be in a face down position looking at the underwater life. Breathe normally through your mouth in a relaxed manner.

Try diving. If you go all the way under water, which many snorkelers do to get closer to the fish, the tube will fill up with water. Hold your breath and dive to the area that you want to look at.

Purge your snorkel tube of water. Resurface. Do not breathe in at first. Once the tube has cleared the surface, give a blow, powerful enough to push the water out of the snorkel.