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Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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New Member
Apr 20, 2005
Just wanted to drop a line and say hey. I've recently developed an interest in freediving, and figured a forum would be the best place to get some good info on the subject. I obviously have little experience with this, so any wisdom you vets out there can spare will be much appreciated :) I've done a little research on the subject, learning the difference between static and dynamic apnea, and a few of the freediving forms, but not much past that. I'm currently trying to work on increasing my static apnea limit. So far I average about 2 minutes before it becomes a mental battle to resist the urge to breathe. My best was close to 3 minutes, which still doesnt seem like much in terms of free diving. So I guess my first few questions are:

1. How can I increase my static/dynamic apnea?
2. How do I slow my heartrate?
3. How can I increase my body's CO2 tolerance?

Thanks for the help :)

p.s. Like I said, I'm pretty new to this stuff, so please go easy on my with the technical freediving lingo.
Welcome to DB.

Most of your questions can be answered using the search function, top of the page, center right. Experiment with searching different words and you will find what you want. It is a great resource and worth a little effort to learn how to use it.

Have fun

or you can ask a yoga instructor. They are specialized in this thing. All the world freediving champions are realy advanced in yoga.
have fun.
gnusa said:
or you can ask a yoga instructor. They are specialized in this thing. All the world freediving champions are realy advanced in yoga.
have fun.

That is simply not true. Yoga can be beneficial to some, but lots of divers (very very good ones) have nothing to do with yoga. I also don't know what you mean by "very advanced", but compared to some yoga practisers, I'd say freedivers in general use a very limited part of yoga (with, of course, the exception of some).

My very quick answers would be:
1. By doing lot's of static and dynamics and juggling variables (ie trying new things. If they work keep doing that, if not, drop them)
2. This comes with practise, but don't be to fixated in your HR
3. By doing lot's of apnea exercises.

Yes, it really is that simple.

Now the secret is, how do you train that much without compromising your physical health and keeping your motivation up? For that, I'd say "use the search function".

There's no secret or silver bullet. With or without yoga, improvement comes from training (you have to train yoga too).
Yes Improvement come from practise. That is true. I never said that yoga is a must for practising free diving. its not. And a lot of people that had not trained yoga had been great breath holders. but also the most famuos like Jacques Mayol and Umberto Pelizzari have been doing at. In fact Pelizzari sent his student in india to learn medditation and after that the dude made 91 meters depth with only fins and a mask. I dont say it is imperative but for shure it helps. And for a simple logic that in yoga they have very similar goals(in terms of counsciosness). So It is not the only thing important but is still a very important aspect of the breathhold training. Thanks for reading my post btw. Have a nice dives and read ya soon.
I didn't mean to sound like I'm attacking yoga. I'm not. It's propably great once I dig into it. I just thought that the generalization of "All the world freediving champions", was a bit broad. I'll grant that I don't know any of them personally, but I'm fairly confident that a lot of "world class" freedivers don't do yoga.

I also wasn't attacking you, be most welcome to this forum and have good dives!
Thanks for the replies guys. The "search" function works great, but it's a little frustrating at times, considering a lot of my searches yielded more questions asked by other members, which also happened to be answered with "try using the search function".

I've given some thought to the yoga approach, but from what I've read it's possible to be a successful freediver without that tool. My interest in freediving is strictly recreational, and since I don't plan on setting any records or competing, I have no need for fancier techniques like yoga. I'm also about to head off to college, so money for yoga classes would be better spent on things college related.

As far as apnea practice goes, I've just begun aquainting myself with the tables. I've managed a PB (personal best right?) of 3:00 without the tables, and the only reason I stopped there was due more to an inability to fight my mind rather than comming close to blacking out. I guess that will become easier as my CO2 tolerance increases. I guess my next question is what are some good relaxation techniques? I'll try the search function for this, but any extra input will be appreciated.

P.S. I'm not too worried about compromising my health too much with training. The body of an 18 year old tends to be pretty resilient ;)
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You should be worried, or you'll find your self with the body of a 50 year old at 20 :)

Seriously, apnea training is very tough on the body and overtraining is very easy. It's ok to train a few times per week without paying much attention, but more than that, you got to eat well (healthy) and sleep enough.

Personally I haven't learned any special relaxation techniques. I know some may be useful, but I just did tons and tons of statics and in the end relaxation just sort of comes a reflex. I don't think about it or try to trick my mind into it anymore. I just stop breathing and everything goes limp.

In my opinnion the best training, especially for recreational diving, is simply to dive alot. Dry breathholds, apnea walks etc are more useful for someone like us, who have very limited access to water (long, cold winter). If I had the change, I would much prefer to just dive in open water all year to holding my breath while laying on my bed.

But the same goes for breath holding (dry or wet) in general. You simply have to do alot of them and listen to your mind and body and try to find what works and what doesn't. It's very hard to tell what you should do or feel like, it's all about learning to know that your self.

Now the tips that I WOULD very much pay attention to are those regarding safety and well being. This is a potentially fatal hobby IF done WRONG. The most important safety rule (and I hope I never get tired of repeating this) is to never dive alone in water and never EVER push anywhere near your limit if alone in the water.
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Yeah. I should repeat that to myself. Never ever push yourself near your limits while alone. And I would like to remind everyone . because life is a beach and then you dive:)

stay deep.
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