Sidemount diving is a scuba diving configuration where the tanks are secured to the diver's sides instead of being mounted on the back. This type of diving has been gaining popularity in recent years due to its versatility, comfort, and safety features.
In sidemount diving, the diver wears two separate tanks on either side of their body, each with its own regulator and pressure gauge. This configuration offers a number of benefits over traditional back-mounted tanks. For one, it allows for greater flexibility and range of motion, as the tanks are not obstructing the diver's back. This can be especially important in tight spaces or when diving in wrecks or caves.
Sidemount diving also offers increased redundancy and safety. With two separate tanks and regulators, a diver always has a backup in case of equipment failure. Additionally, the tanks can be easily removed and replaced underwater, allowing for quick and easy access to valves and regulators.
One of the main advantages of sidemount diving is its versatility. It can be used in a variety of diving environments, including open water, wrecks, and caves. It is also well-suited for technical diving, as it allows for more complex gas mixes and decompression schedules.
To learn sidemount diving, divers typically take a specialized course that covers the unique skills and equipment necessary for this configuration. This may include learning how to properly rig and adjust the tanks, as well as techniques for donning and doffing the gear.
Overall, sidemount diving offers a number of advantages over traditional back-mounted tanks, including increased flexibility, safety, and versatility. If you're interested in expanding your diving skills, consider taking a sidemount diving course to experience this unique configuration for yourself.