For Beginners

Introduction below is from “Underwater Fishing in Australia and New Zealand” with thanks to the author, Dr Adam Smith (Club Champion and Australian Champion diver).

Teaching beginners about how to dive, use equipment correctly, explaining the rules and regulations and then watching them put the theory into practice and spear a fish or collect crayfish is a very rewarding feeling. If you are a good teacher you have the opportunity to make the beginner’s first experience of diving a pleasant and interesting trip that may ignite a lifetime passion. Therefore you should carefully choose the best location to ensure clear water and plenty of fish, keep close to them, point out the different species and offer advice on the best technique and help with gear (beginners may not be able to load a speargun or remove a fish from a spear). While some children as young as six year old have speared some good fish it is recommended that children be reasonably mature (at least 12 years old) before they are given the opportunity of using a speargun and shooting fish. Instead, work on their snorkeling ability and their recognition of marine life. Some people believe that no child under the age of 8 should use a snorkel due to the complications caused by ‘dead air space’ and the inherent risk of passing out. As your student becomes successful at shooting fish make sure you give them the ‘whole’ experience, planning the trip, cleaning gear and fish and cooking.