So you’ve been planning your Hawaii vacation, you’re itching to see the sun and water, and you’ve planned on renting scuba gear while in Waikiki. There you are, and the dive instructor says, “OK! Grab your buddy and your BCD, and let’s make sure you can equalize and clear your mask before we go.”


Sometimes, it can seem like your dive instructor is speaking a foreign language if you’re new to scuba diving. In today’s blog, we’re going to fill you in on 20 of the most commonly used terms in scuba diving. If you need diving equipment and instruction for your upcoming Hawaii vacation, then contact Aqua Zone SCUBA today! Now, let’s get started with our first scuba diving lesson, shall we?


Generally at the end of the dive, this refers to rising to the surface.


Buoyancy Compensator. This is the harness that holds your air tank and connects to the regulator that pressurizes your oxygen.

Boat Dive

A scuba dive that requires a boat ride to the site.

Bottom Time

The length of your dive.


The person you dive with. You keep each other safe and discuss dive plans together.


Your position in the water. This can be positive (floating), negative (sinking), or neutral (floating in the middle).


When you “call a dive,” it means ending a dive and ascending.

Certified Diver

A diver who had completed scuba diving lessons and has a scuba certification.


Divers Alert Network.

Depth Gauge

This is on your scuba diving equipment and shows how deep you are during the dive.

Dive Computer

Can be used instead of a depth gauge. Monitors depth, bottom time, and other information.

Dive Instructor

Someone who has many scuba certifications who is qualified to teach others.


A professional-level scuba diver who can assist dive instructors and has logged at least 60 dives.

Dry Bag

The bag where you need to store any items that aren’t waterproof.


Compensating for the change in pressure with ear equalization.

First Stage

A part of a scuba regulator that attaches to the air tank.

Mask Clearing

Clearing water out of your mask while in the water.

Octo or Octopus

A secondary regulator for emergency situations (e.g. main regulator failure or buddy breathing).

Pressure Gauge

A device that measures how much air is in your scuba tank.

Safety Stop

A 3-minute stop at the end of your dive between 15 and 20 feet from the surface to remove excess nitrogen from your bloodstream.

Get Scuba Gear In Waikiki

For your Hawaii vacation, you’ll need scuba gear to safely experience all the ocean has to offer! Whether you are certifying as a divemaster, getting your PADI certification, or scuba diving for the first time on this trip, Aqua Zone SCUBA is here for you. For things to do in Waikiki, you can’t beat scuba diving with sea turtles, scuba diving lessons, or checking out a wreck. Visit us at The Waikiki Beach Marriott Resort & Spa today!