A 72-year-old woman died on our beloved island of Roatan today. And while we don't have all the details, we know she was experienced, loved, and passionate about diving.
As soon as I learned about the story, I started to consider the impact aging has on our diving carriers. It is an important consideration especially in the knowledge that we're living longer than the average life expectancy in 1935, which was 65 years of age back then.
Three Physical Criteria to consider before Diving
There is a difference between chronological and physiological aging. Your chronological age is your calendar age or the number of years you've been alive. Physiological age is more subjective. Your physiological age is your "effective age," or the age expected in someone of a different age. There are three main criteria to consider as we age:
* Fitness - The cardiovascular fitness of one's body
* Co-Morbidities - The presence of diseases or impediments in one's body
* Mobility & Strength - The physiological age of a person
Three General Criteria to consider before Diving
JUDGEMENT: The reality is that the only aspect of our lives that improves with age is our judgment. Everything else deteriorates over time. So good judgment, now and in the future, remains a key factor in making for a good scuba-diver.
PHYSIOLOGICAL AGE: Second to good judgment is a healthy body. Here our physiological age matters more than our chronological age.
DIVE CONDITIONS & DEPTH: Finally, dive inside your physical limits by controlling the diving conditions and diving at the proper depth. How to determine you, deep dive? Dive no deeper than the distance you can swim under water at the surface.