How NOT To Die When Snorkelling

I’m a pretty decent swimmer.  I’m confident in the water, and will take you on in a race, you know, if you need me to.  I float like a champ, can complete a somersault without getting water up my nose, have been known to play a little volleyball in the big fancy pools, and have a killer cannon ball.  I can water ski, and even paddle board without falling off ..too often.  Basically, when it comes to swimming and water sports, I don’t embarrass my kids, too much.   Unless you hand me a snorkel and mask. 

To me, that innocent little snorkel and mask looks as dangerous as any weapon.  It is simply a plastic mask of death covering your eyes and nose, eager to snuff out your last breath.  That tube shoved in your mouth?  It’s just there for giggles!   For some unexplainable reason I can not get over the claustrophobic, panicky feeling when that mask goes over my face and that little HUGE mouthpiece is required to go in your mouth.  Seriously.  You are supposed to be able to breathe through that rubber smelling tube?  And that mouth piece that you’ve borrowed has been in how many mouths?  GROSS.  And can you really tell me I’m the only one to notice that the mouth piece fits in your mouth the same way the tray for X-rays at the dentist does.  Shiver and NO. It’s all so unnatural.

*found at CostcoSnorkel3

So clearly I have a really positive and healthy attitude about snorkelling!  This is just a wonderful gift to pass on to my tween girls, you know, especially because I’m a travel writer and we are heading down to the Turks and Caicos in October.  Only one of the best places in the world to snorkel.   So today I bring to you:

How to snorkel and not die.   (At least in the pool in your own backyard.) 


*Disclosure This is not a picture of me.  This is my stunt double SweetGirl Age 12

Step 1:  Buy your own snorkel kit.  The importance of this?  No other dirty humans have put their mouths on that snorkel!

Step 2:  Take your girls into the back yard and tell them how much fun snorkelling is going to be and that you are going to learn together. (mind over matter people)

Step 3:  Fake it until you make it.

-This may include starting with just the mask!  (not that I’m pointing a finger at myself)  Deep breath, stay calm. 

-Once you can swim with just that mask on.  Brave up like a big girl and put that nasty dentist like mouth piece in your mouth.  Go ahead and dry heave if you have to.  Your kids will think it’s funny.  Eventually realize you are thinking way too much about this stupid piece of plastic.  Put it in your pie hole and dive under the water all at once.  Concentrate on your breathing and nothing else.  Swim one length of the pool, then maybe another.  Call it a victory!  Repeat the next day.

*Of course if you are a tween girl you just go for it and are fishing dimes off the bottom off the pool like you are part mermaid. 

Step 4:  When you travel, take your own mask and snorkel with you.  Know your limitations.  Ain’t no way I’m putting someone else’s snorkel in my mouth.  Still count this as winning.

Step 5:  Congratulate yourself for teaching your girls how to conquer your fears (slowly but surely) and pat yourself on the back for not dying while snorkelling. 

The end.


  1. Some good tips!

  2. I love your attitude towards life & look forward to reading your blog posts

  3. What a great way to get them started. I know the whole thing scares me and practicing in the pool with your own equipment is genius!

  4. Judy Cowan says:

    lol….it will all be worth it once you get to the Turks and Caicos! But yes I agree take your own, I would not be putting anything used in my mouth!

  5. LOL This is something I have NEVER been able to do! I just can’t put that dirty mouth piece in my mouth.

  6. You had me laughing out loud with your post!! And I’m with you….never put a mask someone else has worn in your mouth! Disgusting! FYI….I too conquered my fears and am so proud of myself that I did!! I know just love to snorkel, and so with your darling daughters!

    • Thanks so much! I am so looking forward to exploring the waters of Turks and Caicos with my entire family! (and glad I could give you a giggle with my true confession) 🙂

  7. i’m jealous of your pool everytime you post pics of it

  8. I have this same issue with snorkeling. Cant do it. At all.

    • It is truly “work” for me at this point, but gets a little bit easier every time I try! Maybe you should try again?

  9. I am too scared to snorkel

    • I understand that completely. For me the motivation of teaching my girls before our upcoming trip really gave me the push I needed.

  10. Lynda Cook says:

    Thanks for the laugh great post, but I agree with you, I can’t stand the mask and snorkel

  11. Darlene Schuller says:

    lmao you crack me up!! Thanks for the much needed laugh..btw I’ve never snorkelled for those VERY reasons!!

    • Never say never! Maybe one day you will want to snorkel and then I can have a giggle at your attempts! Life is an adventure 🙂

  12. LMAO Wonder if it’s too late to go out and get myself some snorkelling equipment? Maybe I could do it if I didn’t have to share the actual snorkel. (and nobody was watching me gag!)

    • The gagging is the worst!! I think I might have done better if I had started with nobody around, but then who would have saved me if I drowned 🙂

  13. You are so funny.
    I tend to hyperventilate while snorkeling….I freak out the fish.

  14. haha i am glad that you did not die..and good job making the kids face your fears with you…lol….have only snorkelled limited amounts….def dont want to inhale water through the tube…we had a cheap snorkel kit as kids that almost killed me…inhaling water…

    • I was SO lucky! I happened to buy Snorkels that have a drain at the bottom of that tube. Almost idiot proof! Almost.

  15. I love snorkelling. It is so much fun. But, I admit, I was scared at first, too.

  16. Jodi Mitrovic says:

    I’m sorry to laugh at your fear but your story is so funny! I’m on the same page as you. It is very hard to adapt to being a fish. I enjoyed your tips, tricks and views. Young people make everything look easy 🙂

  17. Chandra Christine O'Connor says:

    nope cant do it wont do it. too bad girls no conquering with me. I cant even close my bedroom door and I feel like I’m suffocating

  18. Victoria Ess says:

    Oh my gosh, this looks like so much fun! I’ll definitely be starting out like you did though.

  19. HEHE love the post. Have a great vacation, don’t forget your own snorkeling gear.

  20. Very funny! You are still braver than I am. Have fun snorkeling in the Turks and Caicos.

  21. Debbie Bashford says:

    I love snorkling!

  22. Neil Anderson says:

    Love snorkelling, good tips

  23. I am all for tip #1

  24. can that water be any bluer?

  25. Treen Goodwin says:

    LMAO .. I wouldn’t go snorkeling i don’t think .. it would freak me out , lol but thanks for the tips 🙂

  26. Good tips….so just how successful are you so far in conquering your fear? I don’t know if I’ll ever try snorkeling as I’m a horrible swimmer and don’t like being underwater too much

  27. Carole M. says:

    We have a big pool in our back yard and when our daughter was 14 she finially made her First Holy Communion in may and in june she took up snorkeling in the pool.She put the white rubberpants on that she had to wear under her communion dress,then put her swim suit bottoms on over them and then her top.She got in the pool and started snorkeling and the rubberpants filled with water and she couldnt keep afloat!The next time she tried it she left the rubberpants off and it worked much better!

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