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dry static times

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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Well-Known Member
Jan 5, 2002
I have only recently started working on my static apnea, being new to more serious freediving. Within a week's time, I was able reach over 4 minutes on several occasions with a best of 4'35".

These times were reached after an initial 2' breathhold and then relaxed breathing with recovery period of no less than the breathhold time. My time usually increase in 15 to 30" intervals.

Over the last 3 days, getting over 3' has been a struggle; I have only been able to reach 4' or better on a session 2 days ago with a best 4'24".

I have recently been diagnosed with a sinus infection and have started a 14 day course of antibiotics. Can the antibiotics and/or the sinus infection affected mby breath hold times? The drop in times coincides with the start of the run of antibiotics.

It also feels as if I am not reaching a state of "flow" or calm in the last 3 days. My breathholds sessions are marked by a sense of struggle and concern over the inevitable discomfort which may be leading to lack of focus. Also, it feels as if I am trying to hard to reach a new PB rather than letting myself simply "get there".

In past endeavors, (road cycling, climbing, etc.), there is a period of plateau and ongoing training; inevitably, I have historically found that I "pop" to new level suddenly when I least expect improvement.

Any input would be welcome as this is somewhat discouraging. Thanks ahead for taking the time to respond.
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Reactions: Erik
over training


If you are sick do not load your body with more work. In climbing I found that if I took three days off I lost my touch, but sometimes after coming back to it after a brief period off just as you describe a break through would happen. You might want to check back on the list for advice on getting well enough for the clinic, that is only a week away. That was a cold, a sinus infection is a different matter, I bet you get lots of suggestions.

Hi Wigma ,
Congratulations on your static P.B.'s !:)
If you are feeling a bit off colour at present you probably shouldn't push too hard right now.If you want to continue your training maybe back off 10 -15 % and do times you are comfortable with. This way when you are recovered you at least will not have slipped backwards.
Remember that statics are very much a mental thing , if you set unreachable goals it can only affect your performance negatively. Anyway I guess you know all that!:eek:
Good luck and keep us informed.
Unreachable goals

Being sick will throw you off completely, don't get depressed.

I agree that unreachable goals create psychological barriers.

In the old days, every time I would take my last breath for a dry static, I would tell myself, "The time to beat is Ravelo's 8:25". Needless to say it didn't help much. When I would get the first tingling in the 4's, I would tell myself again, '8:25 is the time to beat.' I don't think I need to mention that I never reached the 8:25 !!

Eric Fattah
BC, Canada
Hi Eric ,
Do you consider dry statics as essential training ?My dry times have always been much worse than my wet . I have just started training again , and would like to know if I am missing out on something .:confused:
Anyone out there with an opinion?
Hi wigma, beside the fact that you got sick, which will certainly preclude you from any gains, there are other factors to consider.
Long static holds create a massive supply of free radicals coursing through your veins. There is the possibility that they may have contributed to your illness, along with the fact that forced breath holds are extremely hard work! Certainly we're doing our best to stay calm and relaxed, but don't think for a minute that this is not very taxing on your body. Marathon runners don't run a marathon every day, every week, or even every month. Be gentle with yourself! Give your body time to recover. Anyone who weight trains properly understands the value of rest and recovery time. When lifting, I will do 1 set of 12 to failure every week to ten days, and get stronger every session.
I do one PB attempt a week at most, and that's only when a competition's coming. If you're concerened about maintaining (once you're better) then keep it to 2 breathholds a day to 10 or 20 contractions, depending on what's comfortable.
There is a lot of info on breathups in the "Training" archives, so relax and spend some time looking through them if you're interested.
I hope you feel better soon, and I'm sure you'll be breaking 5 minutes in no time.
Erik Y.
dry times

Thanks to all for the replies; all replies have been helpful and have served to reinforce my suspicions.

In regards to the mental aspects of apnea training, I have found from previous experience that I have to moderate my efforts; i.e. if I push too hard to improve, I spend to much time pushing the limits which is obviously the area of greatest discomfort. Mentally, I cannot prepare of the that discomfort.

As an example, in my days of road cycling, long intervals/hill climbs were at times overwhelming when done too frequently as I dreaded the "pain" of the extreme efforts. When I was younger and full of testosterone, I espoused that one should "embrace the pain". Unfortunately, that testosterone laced traing philosophy lead to mental burnout because I simply could not hurt myself in too many training sessions.

While I have "matured", I see that some of my long standing compulsive training tendencies are still variables to be aware of.
Those tendencies are counterproductive to achieving a state of mental relaxation.

Thoroughly enjoying the board as it has proven to be a wonderful resource.


Take a few days off!
You have a whole life of apnea before you. :D

Remember that statics are also a technique. The skills to learn the technique include: knowing your body (when you feel like crap), relaxing, warm-up, mental preparation, mental state throughout the static, delaying contractions, enduring contractions, relaxing at the struggle phase, recovery, etc...

If you look at it that way, the duration of each static when you're practising is less important. Work on your skills. So if you aren't feeling up to a maximum effort (what Erik says about free radicals is important) take some time to work on the components of the static. You can learn a lot by doing shorter ones.

Good luck.

static holds

I know exactly about what you mean regarding static attempts and the wear and tear they produce. I just started freeedive trng in Dec. and within two weeks I got my static up to five minutes. What I also came to realize is that like overtraining in cycling, ( I am a bike racer also)I felt restless and sometimes had trouble sleeping. This led to the realization that static trng put my body into a serious "survival at all costs" mode. My body was able to hold its breath for a long time due to my aerobic development, but it also came at a high price.
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