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Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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Mar 22, 2009
Hey Guys.

Check out this video.

I wanted to share with you my first dive, 6 weeks after recovering from COVID. First of all, I’m not a kid anymore and COVID hit me pretty hard. Not too bad in the chest, but super fatiguing and terrible headaches. Symptoms lasted well over a month.

Prior to COVID I could easily dive 147 feet. Six weeks after, I was still coughing a bit and noticed my lung capacity was diminished and struggled to get to 120 feet.

I think I will fully recover, but it definitely affected my diving. Not trying to sway you guys one way or another on the vaccine. Just wanted to share my experience.

Dive safe,

I don't think this has anything to do with whether or not you had Covid..

If your PB is 147 (45m) and you take 6 weeks off because you were sick.. it's 100% normal that you would come back and 'max out' at around 80% (119 (36m)).

This is what I would expect if you were sick with anything (flu, typhoid, salmonella etc).. or just had 6 weeks off after a few weeks diving to PB level. The math (% of PB) checks out..

On top of that, it's quite silly to try and dive even this close (80%) to PB with a pre existing cough.. you're probably lucky you turned early.
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Without commenting on the numbers above, covid can have long term subtle effects that are particularly nasty for freedivers. My bout came with long term drops in 02 saturation(small, but definite) and lung issues that only showed up when diving. For me, two months after recovering from obvious symptoms, 50 ft dives felt quite unpleasant and more like 100, not right at all. My depth ability did not return to normal for another 2 months or so. For me, covid was a year and two months ago, o2 saturation at rest is still about 3 points below what was normal precovid. Seems likely that my safety margin is less than it used to be and I'd never know it without an oxymeter.
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I also had covid in mid February 2020, before it was reported in NYC where I live. I thought it was a cold or a flu for a day, but I was tired and had mild cough for 2 weeks, and a night i felt a bit choked.

I used to run 5 km at 4:30 pace, now I run 4 km at 5 pace. My breatholdinbg is a little shorter. But I attribute that also to a lazier life, less motivation, having eaten more carbs in the winter, less active lifestyle. but I think i can bounce back. My bloodwork and EKG a few months ago were normal.
I got vaccinated as soon as I qualified, if the US would lift the embargo and export restriction more people around the world would have access to vaccines.
Were you monitoring your 02 saturation before and after covid? See any decline?
Damn! This is disheartening. I recovered from a three week stint with COVID and then had a post viral chest infection that was cleared up with a round of antibiotics. I was anxious to get back in the water and went to do some very non-heroic spearing yesterday. After only three or four drops to no more than seven metres, only down for 40 seconds or so, I started coughing up blood, and got back onto the boat. That cleared up after a few hours on the beach and after a good sleep I am feeling 100%. I'm no spring chicken at almost 70, but I really want to get back to spearfishing ASAP. Your comments are coveted.
Sounds like you ran into what I did, only worse. I could feel lung damage when I started diving again. If it follows the pattern I saw, it will clear up slowly over the next few months. One thing that I think helped me was dry full exhale empty lung exercises.

Good luck with yours.
I am afraid that this whole COVID thing can really hurt freediving as a sport. The beginners, who are not already hooked, might be more careful to even start or won't get approved by their docs. Especially when they have, even small, longer lasting breathing issues, starting freediving might be difficult for them. And for the veterans, new problems will emerge. I fear that we will see more accidents in the future, especially when experienced freedivers try to accomplish their pre-COVID max dives. We have already read in this forum that some very strange blackout events happened that even docs cannot explain at the moment. This is a very sad topic.
I don’t mean to make light of any situation or write anything off as untrue, but I strongly believe much of the affects we will see or do see are psychosomatic. Time will tell though.
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