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Common Hand Signals For Scuba Diving

Updated: Feb 22

We hope this video helps you refresh on all the underwater hand signals you’ll need to remember before going on your next dive! If this video was helpful please hit the like & subscribe button‼️🤿


What's up guys I'm John owner and instructor here at Black Flag Dive Center and today we're going to talk about some of the common hand signals that we use while we're scuba diving.

The first one, the one that we use probably the most, is this hand signal, 'Okay'. This is both a question and an answer so if I give you one of these underwater I'm hoping that you're gonna respond with the same signal. What does it mean? Everything is okay.

This signal does not mean that everything is awesome, okay? This signal means 'let's ascend' or 'it's time to ascend', okay.

This signal does not mean 'oh you suck' or 'everything is not awesome', this means 'let's descend'. If everything is not awesome, if you would like to say to me 'something's wrong' then the signal for that is this. If your instructor or your Dive Master gives you one of these or maybe one of these then what they're asking you for is 'how much air do you have left?' Now in the U.S we use PSI to measure how much air we have left in our cylinder so some instructors or dive Masters may have you give them these signals a different way than I do but the way that I teach it is I want you to give me thousands across your arm and hundreds on your hands like this. Some people say thousands across your arm and hundreds up and down one through five until you get to six and then it's six through nine.

If they give you this signal it means either 'look over there at the big freaking shark' or 'hey watch me' maybe they're trying to demonstrate something or maybe they're just trying to signal to you that there's an awesome turtle over there. This hand signal means 'no' in case it's not pretty obvious if I catch you touching Coral or doing something that's unsafe that's what you're gonna see from me.

Once it's time to make our ascent and do our three-minute safety stop I'm gonna give you one of these, okay. What that means is we're gonna make a slow ascent to our 15 feet we're gonna level off and we're gonna stay there for three minutes.

If I'm asking you how much time you have left on your safety stop and you have two minutes left you can give me one of these or if you have one minute left on your safety stop one of these.

This signal is a signal for 'I'm all clean' or 'we're done with our safety stop'

Once we're on the surface in order to signal to the boat way over there that we are okay we're not going to give them this tiny little signal we're going to give them a big I'm okay just like this

If your instructor or your Dive Master gives you this signal it means that you've separated from your buddy and that you should go and find them.

I hope that this video was helpful for you just in case you need to review before your next dive trip. Again I'm John from Black Flag Dive Center and we hope to see you next time.

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