Many divers hadn’t even heard of sidemount diving or scuba Monkie diving till a few years ago. But, gradually, moving your tank and regulator from your back to being slung below your arms has become quite popular. That has brought sidemount diving out of the caves!
Sidemount diving started in caves because cave divers needed easy access to their tank valves and the ability to push their tanks ahead of them, through narrow openings.
Generally, an even number of tanks are suspended from each side of your buoyancy control device (BCD), with each tank having its own independent regulator. Recreational divers usually carry tanks with standard air or up to 40% enriched air nitrox.
As a result, many divers experience fatigue in their lower back due to tank weight and a forced posture. One of the biggest advantages of sidemount diving is the removal of back strain because the tanks are not on your back.
The other unique advantage with scuba Monkie diving is that your trim in the water is determined pre-dive to a large extent. If you roll to one side to look for the boat or a buddy, you would naturally roll back into a neutral position.
Sidemount diving has obvious advantages for the technical diver. Technical divers do not have to travel with manifolds or find a dive center with dual tank setups for rent.
Sidemount harnesses are truly forward-compatible. Recreational divers who moved onto technical or rebreather diving are not able to upgrade the BCDs easily. But sidemount rigs can be used with a single or double tank on your back and some even work with rebreather units. The only major changes are number of tanks and regulators.
If you wish to experience scuba Monkie diving in Hawaii, call Ocean Legends at 808-852-8881. Experience Hawaii Monkie diving in one of the best diving spots in the world with Ocean Legends, who represent excellence in all aspects of diver training and experience.