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First dynamic apnea attempt

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Thom

New Member
Jul 8, 2001
12
1
0
38
Hi all,

Earlier today I got the chance to try dynamic apnea at my SCUBA club's weekly pool session (usually I'm busy monday nights and can't go).

I was using a pair of Mares Clipper's rather than my Plana Avanti's and bootee's, which was probably a bad idea. I managed 50m whilst remaining within my limits.

What sort of increase in length can I expect from using my Plana Avanti's instead of my Clipper's (basically a very cheap and flexible pool fin)? Obviously, as I only have access to a pool for an hour a week, I want to do everything I can to give myself a good chance during these sessions. Any tips would be appreciated!

Thom
 

Erik

Well-Known Member
Jan 21, 2001
4,731
753
218
Short fins

Hey Thom, I would guess that you should get another 40 to 50% right off the bat, with a GOOD freediving fin. Your Avanti's might help a bit, but I'm not sure. 50 metres is a long way with a little fin; I suspect you are capable of much more with real fins. Be careful, this is one of the easiest ways to blackout in a pool, I have found...get a spotter and work out a system where the spotter watches you for 20 seconds or so after you're up.
Cheers,
Erik Y.
 

Thom

New Member
Jul 8, 2001
12
1
0
38
I would guess that you should get another 40 to 50% right off the bat, with a GOOD freediving fin. Your Avanti's might help a bit, but I'm not sure.

The Avanti's were OK, but I only managed to do about 40m in them due to the massive buoyancy of my bootees... even with 2 sets of ankle weights they are positively buoyant. The main problem with the Clipper's is that I am constantly overpowering them. I guess it's time to invest in a pair of freedive fins, if I can find the money from somewhere...

Be careful, this is one of the easiest ways to blackout in a pool, I have found...get a spotter and work out a system where the spotter watches you for 20 seconds or so after you're up.

That's good advice, thanks. I have to admit that I have been swimming lengths with quite short recovery times without a real spotter, though... just someone 'keeping an eye' on me. Probably a bad idea.

The biggest problem I have is with the turns... can anyone advise me on the best way to turn underwater with fins on? I totally lose my concentration/relaxed state of mind whenever I turn.
 

Erik

Well-Known Member
Jan 21, 2001
4,731
753
218
Turns

Hi Thom, I'm going through the same quandry. I've started doing a flip turn, where I'm upside down after the turn. It's not very smooth, and I'm trying to improve the part where I return to a right-side up position without destroying the flow....it's not easy. I'll update in the Western Canada Reginals thread, whatever the outcome. Let me know if you come up with anything.
Erik Y.
 

laminar

Well-Known Member
Aug 13, 2001
1,129
206
168
Dynamic Apnea safety

Hi Thom,

Glad to hear you're getting into the sport!

Erik is right about having a proper spotter for dynamic apnea. Blackouts can and do happen from dynamic apnea. If you're going to push yourself you need someone to follow you on the surface from one end of the pool to the next (or have two people one at each end of the pool), preferably with a flutter board to use for support should you have a samba (they can pass it to you when you surface so you can hang on to it while you catch your breath). A samba can be a little uncontrolled twitch of your hand as you take your mask off and give the okay signal, or it can be body convulsions that rattle your head and whole body. It is possible to avoid both samba and blackout if you take it slow and learn to develop an awareness of when to come up. Listen to how your body feels. Do you legs feel absolutely weak? Does your head start to buzz or feel strange? Hard to focus your eyes? It's different for everyone, and starting out, some people feel nothing at all before they have a problem. So it's important to have a spotter while you figure out what your early warning signals are.

The same goes for static. If you push it sometime (without intending to do so) to the point where you're losing motor control (samba) you will be unable to pull yourself out of the water and eventually you'll black out, go limp and drown. A buddy system with the proper taps (I can explain if you haven't learned that yet)
is the only way to go for wet static. I've seen sambas and blackouts in competitions and the buddy system works well to prevent serious accidents.

Also, lifeguards are not a substitute for a buddy system! They are not trained to monitor freedivers and get unnerved by underwater dynamics and bodies floating face down in the water. (I've done lifeguard training here in Canada and anyone motionless is a "submerged victim")
So find yourself a buddy and have some safe fun!

Think of freediving as something you'll want to do until you're ninety years old, and that will put your personal bests into perspective a little.

As far turning around at the wall for dynamic, try gliding into towards it and pushing off the wall so that your body pivots on its own axis (imagine a vertical pole running through your back and out through your stomach). Relax your body and take your time (it might take 5 seconds to do it) Don't kick and use your arms to scull yourself into position. If you bend your knees so the fins are out of the way, it helps.

Cheers,

Peter Scott
Vancouver, BC
 
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