3 Reasons New Spearos Remain Outcasts And Give Up Diving Altogether.

I’ve made my fair share of kooky mistakes over the past four years.

The first mistake I made was exaggerating how much experience I had when I started convincing a diver to take me out. I didn’t know anyone, so I went on an old forum and typed in Los Angeles and saw a post where a guy listed his phone number. I hit him up, and when he asked if I’d been diving before, I lied and said yes.

That was selfish and could have gotten us killed.

Diving is all about trust. Don’t break it.

Nothing is more devastating than hearing another diver has died in our small community.

Spearfishing is dangerous, but a little common sense reduces the risk. Finding a dive buddy to sync up with your schedule can be challenging. Or worse, having your dive buddy daydreaming of fish and not spotting you during your dive. Conversely, if you have a proper system, you will dive better knowing your buddy has your back.

Here are three steps to improve your diving while making you wise beyond your years in the eyes of the OGs.

1. Failing to prepare for the worst.

It only takes one lousy dive to ruin a diving friendship.

Experienced divers recommend taking a freediving course to learn the basics of human physiology and diver safety. That means understanding how to properly breathe up and knowing your limits.  My ER doctor buddy also recommends knowing how to use a tourniquet. You never know when you’ll get speared by friendly fire, hit by a prop, or bitten by a shark.

Safe diving is team diving. Anything else is just too significant a risk.

2. Failing to find a mentor who could teach.

Every star athlete has a coach. There’s no reason you don’t have one too.

The earlier you can find a quality mentor who knows how to teach, the higher the probability you’ll stick to spearfishing. The easiest way is to find someone at a local dive club to take you under their wing. If this isn’t possible, then use social media to start reaching out via direct message and asking for advice. The community is small, and most people are willing to help, so ask, and you’ll get answers. 

Remove any self-doubt around dumb questions or feeling like you’re going to annoy people and get the answers you need to be successful.

3. Failing to make it part of your lifestyle.

Whether you spear for sport, sustenance, or a sense of adventure, you’ll stop if you don’t make it part of your identity.

Spearfishing is one of the most complex activities to start, improve, and stay alive. It requires a level of seriousness that transitions a diver from taking it up as a hobby to making it part of their everyday life. That means taking care of yourself physically and mentally. Plus, surrounding yourself with people who are good influences and support you so when you’re in the water, you can focus on what’s immediately in front of you.

The spearfishing lifestyle is one of caring for yourself and the environment you get to play in.

I’m not proud of how I started spearfishing, but even how kooky it was, it allowed me to improve myself and become a better person. Spearfishing will do the same for you if you let it.

Jon Stenstrom
Founder & Angler
Jon Stenstrom is a fishing and spearfishing enthusiast. He's been fishing since he was 5 years old in the backcountry of Yosemite for trout and in the surf near his home in SoCal. Over the past 4 years, he's been spearfishing up and down the coast of California. He started Cast and Spear to help inspire others to get outside and chase their dream fish. Notable catches include spearing a 65-pound white sea bass, large grouper, and yellowtail down in Baja. When he's not in the water, he's usually fishing from his Gregor Baja aluminum boat or inflatable Takacat catamaran.
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