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Spearing with a buddy

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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Simon Blampied

New Member
Oct 16, 2001
Although I always meet up with friends to go fishing we never fish side by side. In fact most competitions actively discourage fishing together with a minimum distance required between competitiors. Whenever I go out my old man always ensures I'm not going out alone, but what does it really matter?? If your not actually watching your buddy and they got into any difficulties you'd only be alerted by their float remaining stationary for a lengthy period, by which time you'd be unable to help anyway. This is obviously not a real problem when surface fishing or shallow diving but now that I feel capable of fishing at greater depth should I now apply different rules and always dive with a buddy?? If so what are the standard proceedures of buddy fishing??

Simon :confused:
Heres my two penneth...

Better to have someone there to help you than not...IMHO it matters v.much. If you suffer swb, or have a problem on the bottom, or encounter any difficulty, then you have someone there...simple...

If I go spearing alone, I don't go deep, and I don't stay down too long... (only you can define what is too deep or too long for you)

If I go with a buddy and it's shallow, then we may split up, but if we go deep - we look after one another, watching your buddy spearing is good fun, a little dot on the bottom stalking fish, while you hope he gets his catch from the surface, and if you are breathing up for you next dive while he is down, this gives you the best opportunity to go and rescue him should you need to, I won't go into detail on rescue and CPR techniques because there are good articles on this and other sites...

Freediving and Spearfishing always have and always will be high risk sports, do the most you can to minimise those risks - there are tons of people out there who owe their lives to their buddies - OH and have loads of fun too!
in addition

good thoughts from mr. crispin. you can never be too careful!

in addition,

try to target competitions that allow teams. make sure both you and your buddy are aware of your comfy depths. searching alone is fine. even taking that first shot(depending on depth), but as soon as you secured something call for your buddy. float lines or reels are the only way this can be possible. when your buddy's aware of what's going on, determine if the fish needs a kill shot, and let your buddy do this. he's fresh. a green fish only means trouble. if you signal to have your buddy wait on the surface, take your time to refocus. remember adrenaline gets you antsy. and, once you're down never assume your buddy is watching, even if you know he's there. it's too much responsibility to have your buddy accountable for your mistakes. he's not an excuse to push yourself.

happy hunting,

ps, i consider myself experienced but i will never hunt alone. freedive yes, but not hunt. too dangerous, especially with the sharks in my area. just my opinion though.
Last edited:
Wow, this reply is five years late, but ... I just saw this thread, exactly one day after I initiated another one to consult your opinion on the idea of making the worlds and national championships a pairs competition, instead of individual, to make sure there is a buddy over there watching when you go deep. A good friend of mine suffered a b.o. and died during a competition. Even though the skipper of his boat fired a bengal and called for help after a few minutes, by the time others found him it was too late. What I dont undestand is why all the experienced people and officials in underwater sports and activities urge all participants to always follow the buddy system, and yet they sponsor national and international individual competitions where the buddy system will actually result in automatic disqualification. It doesnt make any sense.
im not the expert on competitions or their rules, but you do make a good point, my guess is, that there might be still some controversy between say"óld school" spearfishing, like the black and white pictures showing a spearo in the 50's singlehandedly landing a 300 LB jewfish , with short fins,goggles and a nose clip and the "new school" more focused on safety, buddy system regulations, equipment etc... i guess some of these rules simply fell between the cracks of old and new..
Nature of spearfishing is to roll solo and stalk your fish. This is not a good practice! Even if you know your limits, you could end up in trouble and without anyone keeping an eye on you, you will die. One up, one down...that should be the buddy system. Dive with someone you like (your friend), and care about, that way you will be more cautious and vigilant when spotting them. Old school approach was based around hyperventilation and there were many many SWB deaths. It is just not well remembered, as time gone by tends to make us forget. There is no such fish that is worth your life. Competition, or not, safety first. Dive safe
a good method when freediving is to use one gun and one pole spear one guy dives with the gun while the other waits for him on the surface with the pole spear that guy comes up and swaps and breaths up while diver #2 dives the guy on the surface has a pole spear to help with finnishing off a speared fish or fending off sharks or picking up that big fish that comes along to check out diver#1 's kill and this way the divers stick together
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