When a wave breaks, a fascinating series of events unfolds underwater. As the wave approaches the shallower depths, the wave’s energy compresses, causing the water column to rise steeply. When the wave reaches its critical point, it begins to curl over, creating the familiar crest and the crashing of the wave.
As the wave crashes and breaks, a variety of phenomena occur underwater. One of these is the formation of vortexes or eddies. When the wave’s crest collapses, air can become trapped beneath the surface, leading to the creation of air cavities or bubbles. These bubbles then interact with the surrounding water, forming vortexes or whirlpools.
The swirling motion of the vortexes is a result of the interplay between the escaping air and the surrounding water. These underwater vortexes can be quite powerful, drawing water down into their centers before releasing it back outwards. This phenomenon contributes to the churning and turbulence commonly observed in the vicinity of a breaking wave.