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How to start Freediving

sai

Active Member
Feb 19, 2012
179
9
33
germany
Yesterday I had the chance again to train deep diving with a buddy. I noticed something strange happening on every descent. I don't know if it's maybe a personal thing or others experienced this also at the beginning. Sometimes I tend suck my mask to my face right after I frenzel'd, which I think comes from a contraction. But on the same dive, I have no contractions at the bottom or going up. Has anyone experienced this before?
 

Kars

Well-Known Member
Oct 24, 2003
3,443
567
203
42
The Netherlands
www.freeapnea.nl
I did.
It has to do with the lack of coordination and relaxation. Keep training, have plenty of slow dives with a lot of bottom time. It's like learning to walk, in the beginning the coordination is off and the movements rough. Have plenty of small equalisations going down. And when these muscles get tired, pause, relax, and try some more. It's like doing sets of push ups ;)
 

sai

Active Member
Feb 19, 2012
179
9
33
germany
Is there any advantage in doing purge breathes in pauses between dynamics dives except for contractions beginning later and therefore making the dive "more" enjoyable? (contrary to just shallow breathing)
Is it right that the earlier the contractions set in the more my body works in oxygen safing mode and the faster the oxygen gets to the vital parts of body? So it should actually be my goal to not lower the CO2 in my body to an unnatural low level for best performance?

Let's assume I could hold my breathe until I blackout whether hyperventilated or not. In the first dive I hyperventilate and contractions start at 2 minutes but until then I'm almost sleepy and relaxed. In the second dive I just did shallow breathing before and the contractions start as early as 30 seconds and my body tends to tense up quicker and more. What would be the longer dive in the end? Is there a clear answer or mabye a mixture of both would be best? Is there a certain breakpoint where one could say someone is so bad at coping with contractions that he might as well delay them and get more out of his dives.

I saw a few divers with years of experience doing INTENSE hyperventilation between dynamic dives to get their CO2 levels down, so I'm just wondering.

P.S.: Sorry, one last question. ;) Let's assume I'm 5-10 seconds away from samba, how many breaths or how much time does it take to fully recover my normal oxygen level?
 
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Kars

Well-Known Member
Oct 24, 2003
3,443
567
203
42
The Netherlands
www.freeapnea.nl
When I was racing doing 16x50m dynamic, doing it as fast a possible, I was hyperventilating big time in between the 50m dives, 10 - 15 seconds before doing the next 50m.

When I'm training for technique and CO2 tolerance, I just breath slow and deep, little to NO hyperventilation.

For your static hyperventilation question:
I think it's a sliding scale. So in the beginning you may experience a 'big' gain due to an easy hyperventilation start, but the increased metabolism will hit you with a hard and big dose of CO2 quickly after those first comfortable 2 minutes. The danger is obviously in that it's easy to hyperventilate so much that the O2 runs out before the CO2 urges your to get up or even breath!

Now with tables (Table A) you'll learn to relax, and control your body and mind, rendering the first two minutes very easy, without hyperventilation, with the dreamy enjoyment, and with a nice slow heart rate too :D after those easy 2, the difficulty of the CO2 GRADUALLY sets in. And because it's gradual it's easier to deal with. Because your body has not a raised metabolic rate (due to hyperventilating) the transformation of O2 into CO2 goes much slower, allowing you to hold out much longer.

For training I recommend to experiment a lot, playing around with variables etc. All with a buddy in a safe way of cause. Focus not on just completing the schedule, but on learning what's going on and trying different things to direct your mind and body. Different preparations, different food, etc.
Also I like to do 'blind tables' where I go on my sensations instead of stopwatch times. This helps me to shift the focus on my diving instead of the bloody watch. And it helps me to prevent myself from pushing too hard on days that I'm not in the best or normal shape. For a Table B I may do something like this: 50% 2'rest, 50%, 2', 70%, 2', 90%, 2', 90%, finished. After completion I'll have my buddy say me the times.
 

EARL1220i

Freediver/ Spearo
Nov 17, 2009
137
2
53
Dubai
www.thefreediver.ae
hi guys when you dive deep and not have much surface interval what would be the negative aspect of this? sample dive at40ft at 2 min bottom time . and one ask me about after dive he always got dizzy and last for 2 days what is wrong with his dive? hes diving 30ft only. i think it mor like vertigo. what can you say guys? its alarming coz it stays for him for 2 days after the said dive thanks
 

jonkandonkan

New Member
Apr 28, 2012
2
0
0
Sweden
I have just started doing some CO2 and O2 tablets.

My Static record is 4 minutes, I did this last week and have never practiced holding my breath except for some "max-tries" every now or then. Now I will be doing 2-3 tablets a week (doing other sport-workouts also) and wondering how long will it take for me to reach 5 minutes? : ) I suppose its hard to say and very induvidual but are we talking 2-3 weeks or months? : P

Sorry for bad english!
 

fabikp

Well-Known Member
Nov 26, 2010
26
3
58
czech republic
Hallo, I can tell you only about my own experience, it took me several months to improve from 4 to 5 mins., but I am sure it can be done in weeks (and quite easilly I suppose), each person's ability is very different, so it can't be said generally at all. Good luck. Pavel
 
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sai

Active Member
Feb 19, 2012
179
9
33
germany
Why is it that some people do 4 minutes after a few tries and others need months to achieve this?
Some of these lucky guys even seem to be doing these 4 minutes without any contractions and have never done any CO2 training before. :hungover

@jonkandonkan
Did you have any diaphragm contractions while doing this? :hungover
 

Apneaddict

Well-Known Member
Sep 2, 2010
1,339
369
123
Toronto, Canada
I believe there is a correlation with how "relaxed" you are as a person.

The more laid-back and easy-going you are to begin with, the easier 4:00 and 5:00 comes to you and the later contractions start.

I think that to get beyond the 5:30+ mark, specific training is required by most and you can overcome this "nature" component with mental exercises and practice.

I'm right at this threshold - so its a theory at this point.

I'm not "laid back and easy going"... So we'll see what I can eventually achieve!

To be continued (over the next 2-5 yrs)
 

jonkandonkan

New Member
Apr 28, 2012
2
0
0
Sweden
Oh yes. My contractions starts around 1.45 - 2.15 (1,45 bad rund - 2.15 good)

Im in good shape (relevant?) and would like to say I have a strong mental. Also i have a bit bigger lungs than normal i think.
 
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sai

Active Member
Feb 19, 2012
179
9
33
germany
Yesterday I was talking to another beginner freediver and we were wondering if it's possible for someone who hasn't developed a high CO2 tolerance to inhale water involuntary on a deep dive, before even getting close to any hypoxia, triggered just by the high CO2 level and the lack of ability to deal with it. Somehow it sounds like a stupid question and my common sense tells me that of course it's possible, but on the other side I've never heard of it and everyone's just talking about blacking out. :confused:
 
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zackfodil

New Member
Jul 2, 2012
7
0
0
Ontario
Hi, I'm wondering what will happen if I continue to hold my breath through the contractions? Also how do i mentally cope with the pain when holding breath for too long?
 

Kars

Well-Known Member
Oct 24, 2003
3,443
567
203
42
The Netherlands
www.freeapnea.nl
Sai, though I've done may deep dives, I never felt like CO2 was urging me to breath more then I could easily manage. But I hope another freediver wants to explain it to us in detail.

Zackfodil,

Contractions don't need to hurt. When you're warm and flexible, and you do not hyperventilate they come early soft and manageable.
The trick is to learn to relax quickly after each one, and simply let them roll through.
Force blocking them uses more energy and gives more stress.

Do a challenging CO2 schedule, and see if you can relax through the last (high CO2) breath-holds in a relaxed way.
 

sai

Active Member
Feb 19, 2012
179
9
33
germany
Sai, though I've done may deep dives, I never felt like CO2 was urging me to breath more then I could easily manage. But I hope another freediver wants to explain it to us in detail.
How about in dynamic? Could you push every dive to samba/BO? You can abort your dive in dynamics anytime, but in deep dives it's a different story.
 

Kars

Well-Known Member
Oct 24, 2003
3,443
567
203
42
The Netherlands
www.freeapnea.nl
I could not push every dyn dive to Samba /BO. It's very tough, certainly if you have the intention to do a bo. From the bo's and samba's I've seen people were holding their breath until they momentarily lost consciousness. In the beginning it's indeed tough to hold one's breath. And if you've inhaled much air you may feel like you're bursting. Releasing a bit helps. But after a while you'll become more flexible and able to relax through this moment.
 

sai

Active Member
Feb 19, 2012
179
9
33
germany
In the beginning it's indeed tough to hold one's breath. And if you've inhaled much air you may feel like you're bursting. Releasing a bit helps. But after a while you'll become more flexible and able to relax through this moment.
If you talk about "the beginning", are you talking about beginners starting to freedive or the beginning of the breath-hold? Sorry, I can't figure it out. :duh
 

TeamRuiner

Member
Sep 9, 2011
16
0
11
FL
I use 1/2 lb lead chicklets on a nylon strap with a clasp that are often used for scuba ankle weights.

I find them to be very streamlined and it is easy to adjust, if needed (salt be fresh water, etc.)
Where can you buy the chicklet type lead.? Can't seem to find it anywhere
Thanks
 
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