For many people, the idea of being underwater is terrifying.
Even the opportunity to see unusual marine life up close is not enough to push past that fear.
And the idea of being fully immersed in this marine world with scuba gear is just beyond the training and comfort level of many of us.
But Canadian born diver Jodi Taylor who runs SNUBA Turks and Caicos has completely dispelled that fear and removed those barriers.
SNUBA, which began in 1988, is a unique water activity that allows a person to swim under the water without having to come to the surface for air and without having to wear heavy scuba equipment. Think of it as a cross between diving and snorkeling. The diving tank is secured to a raft above on the surface. It follows the swimmers movement. There is no need to wear any heavy equipment or go through any full dive certification training to do this. Participants in the SNUBA can be underwater in less than 30 minutes and enjoy the diving experience in relatively shallow depths of only up to 20 feet.
Jodi always loved to dive and thought it would be an ideal career choice. When she learned about SNUBA, she was excited.
"I fell in love with the simplicity of the program," says Jodi. And she hasnt looked back since "taking the plunge" in April of 2004.
As a SNUBA operator, Jodi has had to meet strict requirements with SNUBA International including completion of full scuba diving certification as well as completion of the SNUBA guide program and the required minimum 250 fully documented SNUBA dives. In the words of one customer, "Jodi knows her stuff." She is fully knowledgeable about the equipment, the dive process, and the environment itself.
But Jodi is a not only a dive aficionado, she is a gifted teacher. The program is designed to provide a prep period before the dive where guests are taught the how-to's of breathing with the equipment, safety tips, and what to expect. But Jodi takes great care with each guest. "Jodi was the best instructor ever! Her patience kept me from panicking, as I had never used a regulator and mask before," said one woman. She capably instructs children and adults and makes them feel comfortable no matter their ability level or confidence level. "I was terrified to SNUBA but Jodi was so patient . Jodi did an excellent job at making me comfortable."
Guests of her business might "plunge the depths", but Jodi's quality of service reaches for the stars. Jodi goes the extra mile. Her knowledge about marine life is extensive and it shows in the way she points outs things that guests might otherwise miss while swimming. She takes photos during the tour and emails them to guests. In addition, she's in tune with where each swimmer is and will accommodate their specific needs no matter what their age or experience. In the words of one very grateful mom, "Jodi is a wonderful teacher and guide, and really knows how to work with kids (and adults) to impart safety and basic dive skills, and to inspire confidence."
And the clients SNUBA experience is amazing. Jodi Taylor provides a way even for the nervous beginner. Says one woman, "Before we went to the water, I almost changed my mind, but I am sooo glad I did not. Thanks Jodi, I feel I have conquered one of my greatest fears and had the experience of a lifetime."
SNUBA Turks and Caicos under the capable hands of Jodi Taylor can take a day in the water and make it an undersea experience that will be remembered long after a guest leaves Providenciales.