How to Choose a Snorkel for Scuba DIving, Freediving and Snorkeling
Whether you are a diver, a snorkeler or a free diver, the snorkel must be an integral part of your equipment. We often forget that the main function of this equipment is to make us breathe!
For the record, the snorkel was the first dive gear that was invented. In ancient Greece, Aristotle, in 400 after J.C, relates the use of a bamboo stick to breathe underwater. In recent years new models of snorkels have appeared replacing the antique models with tiny diameter, unpleasant mouthpiece and bad purging system. The snorkels 2.0 have been able to erase all those imperfections by offering wider diameters to ventilate correctly, gum-friendly silicone mouthpiece, valves for quick purge the excess water, valves preventing water to enter the tubes and better fixing systems to avoid losing them underwater. Now the snorkel is not only the plastic tube that it use to be but has become a fashion product, elegant with refined design full of technology.
Snorkels for snorkelers
For sea hikers, people in love with triathlon and swimmers, the choice of snorkel is super important. Indeed, your aquatics excursions can last from several minutes to hours. This is why it is essential to have a comfortable product in the mouth providing a breathing effort as close as possible to the natural effort. For this reason, opt for a snorkel equipped with a drain valve, a large diameter and a silicone tip.
From all the snorkels we tested, the Ameo Powerbreather is by far the best overall. This brand new product is revolutionary for different reason. First of all, unlike conventional snorkels, you will inhale and exhale through two different channels, making sure that fresh, oxygen-rich air can enter your lungs. At the same time, the innovative valve technology prevents water from entering the tube. The result: You will breathe as naturally in the water as you do on shore! This is super convenient when you want to improve your swimming performance. We also tried the with the famous SEABOB underwater scooter. All snorkels we tested on that incredible machine were vibrating as hell, bending or unusable… With the Ameo Powerbreather, we had no problem at all riding without thinking of our breathing technique.
If you want more information about this incredible jewel of technology, feel free to read our test of the AMEO POWERBREATHER.
Snorkels for competitive swimming
No doubt you have already noticed those strange snorkels with unusual shapes. The frontal tubas are perfectly contoured and have a large diameter for better gliding and maximum breathing. These snorkels are mostly used during swimming training and competition. Once again we will recommend you strongly the Ameo Power breather, due to its patented technology and its excellent design, the POWERBREATHER adjusts perfectly to the shape of your head for hydro dynamism. With it you are going to improve your record greatly.
Price range: from 15€ to 99€
Snorkels for scuba divers
During your scuba diving training, the snorkel is part of the diver’s package. You will need to perform some surface exercises and become familiar with its use. Whether you use it in a calm or restless sea, the snorkel makes it possible to breathe safely on the surface if your bottle is empty or if your regulator is unusable. When buying, prefer a long and flexible tuba, ideally foldable to carry it inside your dive stab. The diameter is also very important because the effort you make while using your fins. Remember that snorkels are usually brightly colored to be spotted at the surface by boats.
Price range: from 10€ to 30€
Some interesting models :
- – Arobase from Mares
- – Seaflex from Seac
- – Desert Dry from Cressi
Freediving snorkels are often the simplest models existing. Without complex purging system and without valves to limit breathing noise, those snorkels are also shorter to easily expulses the water from the tube and be less cumbersome. They usually have a slightly larger diameter to properly ventilate between two dive immersions.
Price range : between 15€ and 25€
Some interesting models:
- – Spy from Beuchat
- – Slalom and Zoom Pro from Omer
- – Corsica from Cressi
Mask and snorkel combined
Alternative or must have for snorkelers? The full face masks that combined mask and snorkel will allow you to breathe both by the nose and by the mouth. These products attract a large clientele looking for a much simpler aquatic experience. But remember, with this kind of product you can go deep or you are going to hurt your ears. We tried different brands and our choice went to the Easybreath from Subea Decathlon. Easy to use, totally waterproof, great view and no fog, everything you will need if you just want to enjoy the beauty of the sea from the surface.
Price range: from 30€ to 60€
So models we like:
- – Subea Easybreath
- – HiCool
- – Seaview
You should now have everything you need to make the right choice. Do not hesitate to share your experience in the comment section.