Abyss Scuba Diving

Is Sidemount Diving Difficult?


 Is Sidemount diving difficult?

One of the primary questions we get from customers regarding Sidemount diving is, "Is Sidemount diving hard?" Well, the answer is both no and yes - it will take time for you to get familiar diving with a new configuration (just like when you learnt to dive). If you complete a PADI Sidemount Diver Specialty course this will help streamline and speed up this learning process. Once you pass the learning curve of being able to mount and unmount your tanks quickly, moving around the underwater environment will become easier while carrying a bigger supply of air.

Many divers agree that Sidemount diving is the way forward - they comment that it is more comfortable compared with to diving with a tank on your back, provides extra air, and gives the ability to continue other levels of diving with use of technical gear. Sidemount diving can be a wonderful way to extend your bottom time, especially if you like long, shallow dives.

Here are three tips for mastering Sidemount diving:

1. Take your time

Sidemount diving is not a race. There is no need to rush through the process of mounting and dismounting your tanks. It is important to take care when handling your equipment so that you do not accidentally damage anything, or stress yourself out and give up before you get comfortable.

2. Practice makes perfect

The more you dive with Sidemount gear, the more comfortable you will become with it. It is important to keep practicing so that you can master the skills necessary for successful Sidemount diving.

3. Be patient

Learning anything new takes time and patience. Do not get discouraged if things do not go perfectly at first. With practice, you will eventually master Sidemount diving and be rewarded with increased confidence in the water. Most divers say after their first training dive that they don't like it - it's too difficult... but by the time they complete their PADI Sidemount Diver course they LOVE IT!


Sidemount diving is a clever way to extend your bottom time, especially if you want to become a technical diver, or simply enjoy long shallow dives. As mentioned, the benefits of Sidemount diving include increased comfort levels, extended dive times, and the capacity to continue diving with technical gear. So why wouldn't you want to take the plunge?

 What Divers Say About Their Sidemount Course