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Dedicated Dynamics Training

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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kiwi chick

New Member
Nov 16, 2004
Hey Guys

Anyone have any ideas on specific training suitable for long dynamics. I'm intending to focus on my dynamics ony (with whatever CW diving I manage to squeeze in!) for the next 3 months & would like to improve my current dynamic PB by approx 10-15m. I have always had a rather 'random' approach to training which has worked just fine up until now but I'd like to try & get more scientific in my approach. Any ideas would be much appreciated.
In particular I have 2 questions:

1. How much rest is needed in between sessions?
2. How many apnea sessions is optimal per weeK?

Thanks a lot....Suzy
Well, I doubt there is an satisfying answer to that question.
It realy depends on many factors like state of training, personal best, ...

Here is some kind of training that I do 2-3 times a week:
(Usualy I don't have the time to do all of it)

* swim a few minutes (I swim 30 mins, but 5-15min just to get warm might be enough)
* stretching/pranayama <- I skip that part in public pools ;)
* a couple of 25m dives <- you can vary that, e.g. diving on the back...
* 4 x 25m passive exhale dives
* 4 x 25m as slow as possible
* combined static-dynamic training: hold your breath 15sec then dive 25m
increase breathhold time by 15 secs. (15s->25m; 30s->25m; 45s->25m, and so on)
* 6 x 50m
*CO2-training: 10-20min of 25m dives with only short rests (30s) between the dives
* do stuff like bubble rings, or exhale and then walk under water :D
* never train alone
* now and then: 50+m

I'm sure there are a lot of other training techniques and I whould like to hear them, too :D
Last edited:
Here's a couple of my workouts. I only make it to the pool twice a week now but about a month out from the USA Spearfishing Nationals, I’ll go 4 days a week. I also play underwater hockey one or two days a week and dive one day a week. So, for now I'm in the water in some fashion 4 days a week.

Workout 1
10x50 freestyle with fins on :45
10x25 underwater dynamics on :30
The next thing is 50s and even though the intervals change they are swum as a single set with no more rest between the 50s than the interval allows
2x50 underwater dynamics 2:00
2x50 underwater dynamics 1:45
4x50 underwater dynamics 1:30
6x50 underwater dynamics 1:20
Then after a short rest:
4x75 underwater dynamics on 3:00

Workout 2
10x50 free with fins on :45
2x100 (broken) underwater dynamics, 2 breaths at each 25 (hold on second inhalation) - rest between hundreds
2x100 (broken) underwater dynamics, 1 breath between each 25 (hold on first inhalation) – rest between hundreds
10x50 underwater dynamics on 2:00
first 2 do with no pause at turn on wall, next 2 do with a 5 second underwater pause at wall, next 2 do with 10 second pause, next 2 15 second pause, last 2 do with 20 second pause underwater. When I'm having a good day this equates to 1:30 swim with a :30 second breath up for the last couple 50s.
300 yard kick with board alternating one lap (25) hard fly kick and one lap medium flutter kick.

Hope these 2 workouts give you some ideas. The times maybe too easy for you or maybe too hard, just vary them to fit your level and increase them as you improve. I use these workouts as a way to improve my overall cardio fitness, train for underwater hockey, and improve my diving as a spearfisherman so maybe for what you’re looking to do they may not be the best. But it at least shows you some things other people are doing.


Hi Kiwi Chick,

Both of the training approaches by Sturgeon & Richochet I believe are great for training for bout diving (spearfishing, underwater hockey etc) and will improve your Dynamic PBs but I think you will get faster PB improvements by training more closely to the event you are actually trying to improve in. After all, your post says you want to improve your Dynamic PBs rather than be better at chasing fish - no disrespect intended to the previous posts!!

I would suggest you train at least at 75% of your current PB.

Turn up to the pool and treat it like a competition day. Get your mind on the job, hydrate well, go through all your standard predive routines ie stretching, pack stretching, dry inhale/exhale statics....whatever it is that you choose as a routine is fine, improving your warm up routine is another thread all together. The important thing here is to have a routine so that your body and mind recognise what is coming up next and prepares for it. Get in the water and complete your in water routine and then go to 75% or more of your current max dynamic. Take a long rest 5mins + then repeat your in water routine + dynamic 1 or 2 more times depending on how you feel. Doing a session like this is mentally and physically draining so listen to your body and swtich to short less stressful stuff once you feel you have done enough.

Having done 2 years of the high workload/short recovery stuff my dynamic improvements have been very modest but my bout diving has improved dramtically….and this was very frustrating for me. Recently (last 2 months) I've switched to a few big efforts closer to my max PB on long recoveries as detailed above and the improvements are now coming fast.

This works for me and hopefully will for you.......

NOTE: Working closer to max efforts requires an attentive buddy!


Thanks Andy - Up until now I have done a lot of repetitive dives (50m laps etc) & worked on improving my recovery times. I feel pretty comfortable with my recoveries now but want to work closer to my max dynamic. My prep def. needs work but as you say - that's a whole other thread!!

I will try doing 75% of my max & doing a few reps with a decent recovery in a session.

Any ideas on what sort of rest you need between sessions when doing 'max' efforts like this?

Thanks Scott & Ricochet

I appreciate the feedback & ideas - a lot of what you describe is very similiar to what I have been doing - so that's good to know!

I also play underwater hockey & find it a lot of fun but haven't yet noticed an improvement in my dynamics & don't really expect to ... it's just another excuse to go underwater:)

Thanks again
Hi Kiwi Chick (Suzy),

Nice to see you on Deeperblue. I really enjoyed meeting you and all the others Kiwis this summer in Vancouver. Hope to see you in Nice and Switzerland next year...

As you probably already know, there are many, many ways to train and achieve max dynamics.

For me, there's no substitute for maximum efforts.

In terms of performances, I've never done much preparation:
-get geared up (in which ever mode: suit or no suit) with fin, goggles/mask, noseclip, proper weighting, long before my official top
-spend ten minutes sitting still on the pool edge or in the water (depending on my warmth)
(most important factors for performance to me are:
1) proper ballast (spend lots of time on this, it is killer for most people)
2) comfort (warmth and gear)
3) no wasting of energy before dynamic by moving around or fiddling with things
4) streamlining
5) stroke mechanics

I've have still yet to reach my limit with this method.

So how about training based on this method:
-I would do dynamics at high to acute intensity, say 85%-90% of maximum
-3 - 5 reps
-in training cycles of many days in one week, then several weeks off

So back when my pb was 110m, I did the following workout twice before a competition:
-5 X 100m with about 5-7 minutes of rest in between apneas (enough time to let everything recharge)
-In the competition, I achieved 125m. (15m more)

If I were to start training now for dynamic I would use something like this:

-4-5 X 85%-90% of max (it is up to you whether you make "max" equal a pb or a goal for your pb. I guess it depends on how far you have to go! ;) )
-short and easy 25 metre apneas on rest days with long recoveries to fine tune technique
-at least one session of hard apnea exercise (walking or biking) per week for a good 15-20 minutes or hard anaerobic exercise at 90%+ max heart rate for about 30-40 minutes (this is for me only and it assumes a relatively high level of fitness to avoid injury)
-lots of sleep

I'm sure this thread will yield several other approaches but I'll tell you why I like mine more:
On the competition day, you get to the pool, get your gear together, get in your warm-up lane roughly 15 min before official top and then that's it. No complicated warm-up statics, no breathe-up. Just breathe normally through your nose. Much less stressful.

My five cents,

Good luck Suzy!


Peter Scott
Vancouver, BC
Hi Peter

Thanks for your reply - it's nice to be back in touch with the freediving world after meeting everyone in Vancouver!

I like your idea regarding warm up for comps - that fits my style actually! For a while I was watching everyone around doing all these weird & wonderful routines & psyching myself out because all I do is put my goggles on & hop in the pool! But if thats the way you train it should be the way you compete - nice to know that someone else thinks along these lines:)

Just one question regarding your max effort day - just one max session/week or 2-3?

I'm going to have a go at some of your suggestions - just need to get some base training in with fins first because I have been taking a break from freedive training & concentrating on some other sports - but now we are coming into Summer in NZ.

Thanks again Peter - will let you know how I go...
Hey Suzy,

I will not go into the discussion, since there are so many ways of training.

But one lesson I WILL give you is: Do alot of intervals!!!

I don´t know if you are a bi- or a monofinswimmer, and just skimming the posts I´m quite surprised that noone asked you this.
In case that you are a mono-girl (wich I ofcause hope that you are) you should focus on technique for mabey 30% or more in your training. In case you miss some place to see a good style, I´ve heard that there is a video out there, with someone swimming pretty good :)

Bill Strömberg has asked me several times for some trainingtips to post on his apneamania.com, and sometime in the future I will write a full set of programs for the public to see. So stay tuned!

Peter P
Hey Peter

I'm a monogirl - but the first to admit that my mono technique needs some work - have a new fin coming soon so will be dedicating some time to technique. Any tips on specific drills for improving mono technique?

By the way are you Peter Pederson? If you can swim 200m then I'll listen to whatever you say:)

Looking forward to reading your training tips one day - I know it's not a simple question to answer but I'm just keen for some different ideas because I'm getting bored of training at the moment.

Hi Suzy,

Peter is "the man" when it comes to dynamic monofinning and if you haven't seen his 200m download then you should check it out........word of warning though....his approach requires the freediver to wear a very unattractive hat! :hmm -check the video -

Thanks Andy - OK I'm going to check the video out - do you have the link. Otherwise I'll do some 'searching'...

Good one Andy!!!
Loved the one with the hat... And you are perfectly right! There is NO WAY anyone is ever gonna swim 200m without that hat :-D

For you -Kiwi Girl -I will start the project today and then mail it on to Bill as soon it is finished.

Hope that you like the video...

Peter P
Hey Guys

Thanks for the vid links - I've tried downloading but it takes WAY too long - my connection is too slow...but I will keep trying...You've got me all curious now - I think I'll need to watch it 2x - the first time checking out the hat & the 2nd time checking out the technique :)...Suzy
Thanks Peter - looks great...I'm looking forward to giving it a go!! I'm sure you've made a lot of freedivers happy, not just me:)

Peter P,

What's your recommendation for "pre dive routine"?

Warm up statics?
Warm up dynamics?
Or no warm up?
Hey Peter,

When I go into a competition, I do a great deal of streaching of the muscles and lungs for about 30 min. This is where I like to be alone or with someone close to me.
In the water I do a 50m dive and a 75-80m dive -rest for 5 min and go for the attempt.

Some yoga could help me a great deal I´m sure, but since yoga is not one of my daily routines at the moment, it would only stress me in a competition-situation.

Peter P
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