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CAFA competition : E.Fattah C.W.??

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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New Member
May 28, 2002
Did E. Fattah go for 60 m constant weight with passive exhale?
Or full lung?

If so, 60m is quite impressive

60m must be like a sunday trip for him.

But he made it and won the competition, so congratulations to Eric F.! And a congrats to all the other competitors, quite alot of personal bests where made. Peter Scott made 131m dynamic does that mean he has the Canadian record?

Here's the link Competition results
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60 meters was probably the max allowed depth in CAFA

And why shall we assume that it was easy dive for Eric.

Just because you once done 82 doesnt mean you deliver that every day. Could take months to prepare for a max dive. And just weeks to loose the ability.

Every season is a new challenge.

David Carrera (spelling?)(Italian top freediver) did just over 50 in the Nice competition. Herbert did 80 (max allowed depth) which might sound easy, but he only managed around 60 on training day.

There are seldom easy dives in competitions.

I know what 60 m is and I also know that 60m for him should be quite easy, but the question was only related to FRC diving or not?
60m full lung is one thing, 60m half- or nearly empty-lung is something else that I do not personally know.
In an older thread E. Fattah told that may be in Vancouver during the WC he will go for FRC constant weight (with or without wetsuit? I do not remember). It was just interesting to know if it was already a preparation dive or not.

The 60m at the CAFA WRC was on an inhale. The conditions did not allow a no-wetsuit dive. To do FRC requires no wetsuit, otherwise it is not beneficial.

A no-wetsuit dive can be done in any temperature water, but because the competitions was from shore, the competition rig drifted several kilometers, and swimming back to shore can take nearly an hour. This would be fatal without a wetsuit... even if the dive could be done without a wetsuit...

The limit was 60m. We knew a long time before the competition that there would be a limit of 60-70m. This meant that the competition would be won in static (since dynamic doesn't count for team Canada selection). This is why I barely did any training for constant weight and concentrated on static apnea.

Despite that, the 60m dive was very easy (2'07"), and I would have announced 73-75m if there was no limit. The water temp was 14C on the surface and about 7C on the bottom. I was using 3mm heiwa elios pants and a 5mm yamamoto elios top. This is quite a buoyant configuration, and I lose about 10m over a full 3mm.

Eric Fattah
BC, Canada
Eric, or anyone, could you please explain to me why FRC dives should be done without a wetsuit?
Is it just a buoyancy thing?
The primary advantage of an FRC dive from an energy standpoint is that you can sink the whole way down. However, from a buoyancy standpoint, you can only sink the whole way down if you are not using a wetsuit.

Further, to ascend from depth during an FRC dive requires extreme vasoconstriction. Otherwise, the legs burn too much O2. Since the O2 supply is so small, you can't afford to burn O2 with the legs. The legs must rely on Creatine & ATP & Myoglobin as an energy source.

To maximize vasoconstriction, the skin on your legs must be in direct contact with cool water. Another reason why no-wetsuit is a must.

Of course, it is possible to do an FRC dive with a wetsuit. You just can't go very deep.

My 5mm elios yamamoto suit has the buoyancy of an 8mm picasso. To do FRC dives in it, and sink the whole way down, requires 19lbs of weight (8.6kg) for my body type. I once did 38m FRC in that config and it was EXTREMELY difficult. Imagine how heavy I was at the bottom, and with empty lungs.

There are three wonderful advantages of FRC dives:
1. Because you sink the whole way down, there is no debate or argument about descent technique. In constant ballast, it is MUCH harder to perform a correct monofin stroke on the descent, while upside-down. During FRC dives, no kicking is needed on the descent, which greatly simplifies the problem of what technique to use on the descent. On the other hand, ascending with a mono is easy, so that is the same as before. Also, because the FRC descent is so easy, it is much more enjoyable than on inhale dives.
2. There is no N2/CO2 narcosis or O2 toxicity with FRC dives. This means there is no woozy/drunk feeling, and there is no 'feeling of impending doom' which occurs from oxygen toxicity.
3. Because your chest is very squeezed at the bottom, you feel like a seal.

Of course, there are drawbacks, which are primarily:
1. Equalizing is much more complicated
2. Chest must be very flexible
3. Basal metabolism must be lower (since O2 store is smaller)
4. No wetsuit can be used
5. In general, the depth you can dive to is a bit reduced (although in theory with proper training this can be overcome)

Eric Fattah
BC, Canada
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Firstly well done to Eric and other competitors.

Eric assuming that if there was no depth limit you would have announced 75m using a 5mm top 3mm bottom. In the world champs I guess the water will be a bit warmer in canada so you would probably use a 3mm top and bottom ?. Can we say that with the extra 10m from the suit you may do a dive over 85m!!!!! :D


Actually I'm hoping for 100m+ at the worlds, and I think I will make it in practice, but this is a team competition, so I may not be 'allowed' to go for it at the competition.... unless I do 108m+ in practice so that 'only' 100m is conservative!

BTW tonight I finally broke 8 minutes in static! 1st contraction at 5'49". My first static pb in almost 2.5 years. My hemoglobin saturation was 91% @ 5'00", 85% @ 6'00", and even as I passed 7'00" my mind was clear as a bell -- almost frightening. At the 5 minute mark I knew from the oximeter I had a good chance of hitting 8'00", and by the 6-minute mark I knew for certain. However, it was hard to contain my excitement while still holding my breath. It was like I was celebrating before actually doing it.

Eric Fattah
BC, Canada
:D Big congrats Eric!

All the problem solving, mind bending, explorations, ideas, dreams, are coming to fruition it seems! And at what better timing?!!

Keep the good work up, you deserve the results.


Wow Eric that's awsome Im very happy for you breaking 8mins I think you deserve it with the amount of time and research you put into the sport. :)

I know the exact feeling of excitment you talk about when you know your gonna beat your best time whilst your still doing the static. Your breathold actually motivates me to start statics again, Im kinda in the same situation but a minute behind. If I can delay the contractions to 4:49 I think I can break 7mins I will practice soon. can you give the warm up details of this session, I assume it was a dry session.

But doing 100m would be even more impressive :cool: If this is too much of a personal question dont worry bout answering but how close are you in training at the moment.
to E. Fattah,
If I am right, until now you did not yet start FRC deep diving because of the water temp and your preparation is based more on full lung CW (with wetsuit). During the winter, are you training FRC in pool? gym? with suit in shallow water?
In fact, my question is how can you maintain during the winter the myoglobin build up and other physiological adaptations to FRC diving obtained during the summer dives. Or may be, each year, you have to re-start from the beginning with, may be, some kind of "metabolic memory" advantage.

I am pretty interested by the adaptation to FRC diving and related exercises (based on the use of creatine-P and glycolytic pathway without exogenous reoxygenation) for several reasons. As a former competitive sprinter (60, 100, 200m, long jump) I believe many physiological adaptations are similar with that obtained in FRC diving (huge vasoconstriction, nearly no oxygen input inside the muscles which leads to the use of direct energy sources ATP/creatine-P stored in the muscles).

I have also the feeling that I am very sensitive to vasoconstriction in the legs (during CW ascent, I often have to stop (2-3 sec) at about 30m to clear my legs from lactic acid). Even if I climb the stairs : 2-3 floors, I can nearly directly feel the lactic acid accumulating in the legs. The clearing is very fast if I stop. What is strange is that for me it seems to be quite an advantage for dynamic and CW as I have a huge difference between my performances in CW/dynamic and static. As an example, my dynamic is at least 125m even without training, my CW are certainly over 60m (58 m is a very easy dive and I never tried more as I am only beginning CW) whereas my static is about 4 min unless if I train for it and pushed to my limits, I can hit more than 5min.
Any ideas, suggestions??

what about those narcosis and paralysis problems? are you confident you can overcome those? how? do you now have a working DRUMS unit for your training dives?
Congrats !


Congrats on the competition and congrats on the new static PB. Wet or Dry ? What was your final time ?
Eric, Congratulations on your new PB dry static. 91% SaO2 at 5:00 is awesome! 8 minutes total is pretty good to.;)

Have you ever noticed a correlation between high SaO2% and how much you have been in the water lately? My SaO2% was at its highest after I went to the PFD clinic and since it was my second time there, I didn’t really learn anything about the breathup etc., that I could contribute to the higher O2%. The only thing that I can think of is the dive reflex carrying over from being in water everyday for four days.

Lately I have been doing more pool training and my SaO2% has gone up again.
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Have you pushed yourself as hard as you did at PFD ? Perhaps not only the 4 days in the water but also at the level at which you were exerting yourself.

Smellsfishy / Meir
My routine for the 8'00":
Oral temp = 97.4F, time of day: 9-10pm
4'30" (3'16") Min 86,87,88%
2-min rest
4'30" (no contractions), Min 92, 90, 91%
2-min rest
3-min slow shallow breathing
8'00" (5'49"), Min 36, 45, 46%
[ statics were done dry, sitting cross legged on two pillows ]
My three oximeters logged all the data to PC's, so I have the graphs of all the holds waiting for analysis. I also got CO2 data with my capnograph on the warm up holds.

Concerning the deep diving, I'm pretty sure I have solved the leg fatigue & paralysis problems, and I'm pretty sure I can get by the narcosis too. It took 3 years to solve the problems, but I guess some problems take longer than others.

I do not anticipate doing an FRC dive at worlds. The problem is that the saline equalizing technique is too complicated to do with a dry mask, because of the AIDA rules. If the rules allowed for a fluid mask, then I could suck the saline in from the mask. However, with air on FRC I can make only 70m max via dry equalizing (calculation), so I would need to do the saline-in-the-mouth technique which is very complicated and unreliable (so far). It is unfortunate that once again the rules discourage innovation, in this case they discourage FRC diving.

Speaking of discouraging innovation, I think I'm going to post a net-wide message about the termination of production of the fluid goggles. Given that once again the AIDA assembly voted against goggles in competitions, the world record market is too small, and selling on average 4 pairs per year, it would take about 50 years (200 pairs) to make back the $20K in development costs. As it stands it is simply not a profitable product. I have about 6 pairs left and these will be the last produced. I'm uncertain if I will change the pricing on the last few (I might actually increase the price to make them 'last' longer).

Did Bernard Chabanne stop production of the paradisia nose clip? I heard a rumor they aren't available anymore. Another victim of the non-innovation policy?

Eric Fattah
BC, Canada
Smellsfishy / Meir,
I didn’t push myself any harder than I do at home, except it was in the water verses dry statics and dynamic walking. Actually pushing myself hard in apnea for more than 3-days usually drops my SaO2%.

My heart rate fell faster than usually too, so it was like my body was going into Bradycardia quicker than usual.

Eric, excellent data gathering!
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