Hello fellow scuba divers! My name is Alli Webb and I am currently a Senior at Washougal High School. After earning my Open Water Diver certification this past summer, I simply could not stay away from the scuba shop! The Seven Seas Scuba employees have been trying to get rid of me, but my blog entrees were just so awesome they had to let me stick around. You’ll be hearing a lot more from me, and my “youthful” perspective on scuba diving!
Through the Eyes of a Teenage Diver: Volume One
Through my experiences with Seven Seas Scuba, I have found that diving can be exhausting both physically and mentally. However, it wasn’t until after reading multiple articles on divers with extreme disabilities that I realized just how much determination and courage diving can take!
An article titled “Disability and Determination,” from the magazine Dive Training, describes Fed Barona’s death defying journey after his head struck the bottom of the sea floor when diving into shallow water off a Florida Pier. Barona became paralyzed from the neck down, but instead of giving up on his scuba diving dreams, he was determined enough to continue his diving and was back in the water within one year of the accident.
This magnificent story has inspired businesses around the world to invest in programs which provide people with disabilities the chance to scuba dive. One of the most notable is the Dive Heart program, which has been a miracle worker in the diving world for nearly twelve years and has spread throughout areas in the United States, the Caribbean, Mexico, Israel, China, and Australia. Through further research, I discovered that not only is diving with disabilities a rehabilitation process, but it is also bringing people with disabilities together. The Wounded Warrior project is an incredible program that has allowed injured veterans to improve their mobility along with boosting self esteem through scuba diving.
Though some of these people are unable to move their legs, or even move a muscle, while scuba diving they feel free to wander wherever their heart desires. Robert Sagartz, who suffered a spinal cord injury and stroke says that, “On land I can’t walk, but underwater, I fly.”
After reading this article, I have determined that through immense passion and perseverance nearly anything can be accomplished, no matter how impossible the task may seem.