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The freediving confusion (?)

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

New Member
Aug 5, 2021
7
2
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Hi all !
As i was investigating internet and specially this forum in search for an inspiring idea for my IC essay at the end of the month, I started to realize (or maybe saw how obvious it was) that their are so many contradictions out there in our sport. On every possible aspect of it. And it continues in the highest levels (where it get maybe even worse). It seems to me that, with enough dedication, whatever school of thought you are in, you will get there if this is what you really want. Thus, of course, my question isn't "wich one is best ?" as I am a firm believer of mastering fundamentals before even thinking of going experimental. I mean if your aim is to devellop strenght, start whith mastering some sets of pullups, pushups and squats before going fancy. In this regard, the AIDA education gives a very solid base of "pushups, pullups, squats" type training before looking further (my opinion only).

The point of this thread is to point out what I now call the freediving confusion. And since I see some pretty sharp, educated minds around here, I would love to hear what you have to say about that :

What are the hot topics of debate in the trade ? (Diet, training, equalisation technique, adaptation / evolution, etc) ? I mean why in the classroom my master instructor emphasized on the danger of hyperventilation as the gospel, and day later hyperventilate as a pig in order to do his STA PB ? (One of hundred examples I guess).

Why our sport seems to be specially subjected to missunderstandings, disagreement, but some radically, even opposite approach of training and eating would bring two athletes to the same depth ?

What at the issues possibly caused by this confusion ?

Any input is very much welcome, but let's stay cordial and respectfull of each others opinions and views of the topics that might be debated here. Articles to back-up claims would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks all for your help ! :)
 
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cdavis

Well-Known Member
Jan 21, 2003
4,042
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Hi all !
As i was investigating internet and specially this forum in search for an inspiring idea for my IC essay at the end of the month, I started to realize (or maybe saw how obvious it was) that their are so many contradictions out there in our sport. On every possible aspect of it. And it continues in the highest levels (where it get maybe even worse). It seems to me that, with enough dedication, whatever school of thought you are in, you will get there if this is what you really want. Thus, of course, my question isn't "wich one is best ?" as I am a firm believer of mastering fundamentals before even thinking of going experimental. I mean if your aim is to devellop strenght, start whith mastering some sets of pullups, pushups and squats before going fancy. In this regard, the AIDA education gives a very solid base of "pushups, pullups, squats" type training before looking further (my opinion only).

The point of this thread is to point out what I now call the freediving confusion. And since I see some pretty sharp, educated minds around here, I would love to hear what you have to say about that :

What are the hot topics of debate in the trade ? (Diet, training, equalisation technique, adaptation / evolution, etc) ? I mean why in the classroom my master instructor emphasized on the danger of hyperventilation as the gospel, and day later hyperventilate as a pig in order to do his STA PB ? (One of hundred examples I guess).

Why our sport seems to be specially subjected to missunderstandings, disagreement, but some radically, even opposite approach of training and eating would bring two athletes to the same depth ?

What at the issues possibly caused by this confusion ?

Any input is very much welcome, but let's stay cordial and respectfull of each others opinions and views of the topics that might be debated here. Articles to back-up claims would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks all for your help ! :)
A good and interesting set of questions. Hope you get some good answers


To me, two major things are operating. First, the sport is young and there has not been enough time to sort out what works the best. Second, different divers react very differently to differing training stimuli, making it really hard to see the difference between individual variation and best practice for most divers. Just one example, I dive half lung. It works fabulously well for me and my kind of diving, providing much longer, more comfortable, probably safer dives than full lung. Other divers don't do as well with the technique as they do with full lung. This appears to be largely due to differences in diver physiology.
 

hansa123

New Member
Feb 26, 2021
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Interesting thread. And indeed, many things are confusing and contradictory. While there has been much advancement in the last 20 years, there are many obvious reasons why the sport is "underdeveloped". Mostly, money, of course. Who pays for this, for science and studies? There is little sponsorship and there is not much interest from the public, compared to other sports.

And the topic @cdavis raises is still baffling to me. Most tutorials and teachers tell you to inhale as deep as possible and work on lung and chest stretches to fill up every single bit of space and even pack more air in. And then there are some people who dive at 50% inhale and do fine? I do not get it at all, lol.
 
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Aleksi

New Member
Aug 5, 2021
7
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Hi Cdvis and thanks a lot for your input.
My feeling as a starter for reflection is the same as yours: the sport as we know it is pretty new. Many techniques we use and teach are even borrowed from totally different fields (recovery breathing, frenzel for example).

What brought you to starting diving FRC as your regular way of diving raither than a tool for training ?
You say it works very well for your kind of diving, can you tell us what it is ?
And finally, can you enlight me a bit on how being half lungs allows you longer dives ?

Again, thanks a lot :)
 

Aleksi

New Member
Aug 5, 2021
7
2
3
34
Interesting thread. And indeed, many things are confusing and contradictory. While there has been much advancement in the last 20 years, there are many obvious reasons why the sport is "underdeveloped". Mostly, money, of course. Who pays for this, for science and studies? There is little sponsorship and there is not much interest from the public, compared to other sports.

And the topic @cdavis raises is still baffling to me. Most tutorials and teachers tell you to inhale as deep as possible and work on lung and chest stretches to fill up every single bit of space and even pack more air in. And then there are some people who dive at 50% inhale and do fine? I do not get it at all, lol.
Hi hansa !
You are absolutely right to mention the money thing, even though if freediving becoming maybe more mainstream is going to change things a little.
 
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cdavis

Well-Known Member
Jan 21, 2003
4,042
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A good and interesting set of questions. Hope you get some good answers


To me, two major things are operating. First, the sport is young and there has not been enough time to sort out what works the best. Second, different divers react very differently to differing training stimuli, making it really hard to see the difference between individual variation and best practice for most divers. Just one example, I dive half lung. It works fabulously well for me and my kind of diving, providing much longer, more comfortable, probably safer dives than full lung. Other divers don't do as well with the technique as they do with full lung. This appears to be largely due to differences in diver physiology.
and
Hi Cdvis and thanks a lot for your input.
My feeling as a starter for reflection is the same as yours: the sport as we know it is pretty new. Many techniques we use and teach are even borrowed from totally different fields (recovery breathing, frenzel for example).

What brought you to starting diving FRC as your regular way of diving raither than a tool for training ?
You say it works very well for your kind of diving, can you tell us what it is ?
And finally, can you enlight me a bit on how being half lungs allows you longer dives ?

Again, thanks a lot :)
Aleksi and Hansa,
this thread explains the concept, counter-intuitive, but the physiology is solid.


search 'exhale diving' and a Sebastion Muraat video comes up that gives the inventors description

My diving is mostly warm tropical water, good vis, 30-100 ft.

My story:


My story:
 

J Campbell

Well-Known Member
Sep 17, 2001
607
187
148
66
Yeah, I agree, for beginners there is a lot of confusion in freediving. I particulary notice alot of beginners getting all wrapped up in which tables to do, how, long, how many, how to count seconds of in-hale, count contractions. sheesh. Note to beginners, don't fret over tables, just get in the water and start doing breath holds and underwater swims, experiment with what feels good you - with a spotter of course.
 

Aleksi

New Member
Aug 5, 2021
7
2
3
34
Thanks everybody for your input.

@cdavis : I red carefully the thread, very instructive, thanks for the work. I do FRC dives and I love them, but as part of a training routing, EQ check, or just for easy relax shallow dives to 30-35m. I understand that for you, FRC dives are all about the feeling, leave aside the numbers ? But what about the un-beatable feeling of a never ending, fast freefall to the depth (60m+) ?
Also, Eric Fattah (because you mention him) claimed now more than 10 years ago that exhale dive is the futur of deep dives. Yet, all very deep divers are still going on full lungs. A new world record have been set recetly at VB, with some (way) deeper dives happening during training, still full lungs. So this claim to me sounds like the 80's sci-fi : "in year 2000, cars will be flying". But I know very little and am eager to learn more, thus this topic !

@J Campbell : totally ! This is why I insist on fundamentals !

Looking forward to read some more. I mean. Breath up is a topic also, isn't it. And warm-up / no warm-up !
Cheers everybody
 

Rik

In to diving medicine
Oct 4, 2002
177
29
118
Well, is it a young sport? Proper description of breath-hold diving was already done in the '30-isch. And as some of you know, it was part of the first Olympics in Paris, but withdrawn by the massive amount of black-outs. There have been a lot of research done in the '70 en '80 by the military, and again in the '00 and '10. Yes, money plays a role, but don't forget bioethics either.

It is well documented that lungpacking, prolonged breath-holding, use of oxygen, lungsqueezes en decompression illness all can have a permanent negative effect. Ethic Boards will hesistate to give research a go if there is a real perceived danger to the participants. This can limit research to observational research, which makes progress a lot harder.

Some of the confusion isn't necessarily related to rights or wrongs. Empty lung diving has some benefits, but it seems that the additional required training and the lower tolerance of mistakes makes it less likely to be used as predicted in the past. Some techniques can be best used under specific circumstances. Other techniques require a higher basic level of training.

And yes.. there are some subjects like hyperventilation where denial also plays a relevant role, on what it really is. Other subjectes could be the existance of laryngospasm or if you are able to determin the difference between a lungsqueeze and pharynxsqueeze by examining the spit and without making use of echography.
 

cdavis

Well-Known Member
Jan 21, 2003
4,042
792
218
71
Aleksi,

My use of half lung diving is primarily about getting more time on the bottom to do stuff in modest depth . I'm not a deep diver and my short freefalls are not much.


Erics experience with FRC is a good example of the "young sport" idea. He thought he had the key to deep diving that got around the narcosis problem.. Looks like he was wrong on that one and the sport has moved on.
 
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grarena

Active Member
Jan 19, 2019
107
30
43
65
Hi all !
As i was investigating internet and specially this forum in search for an inspiring idea for my IC essay at the end of the month, I started to realize (or maybe saw how obvious it was) that their are so many contradictions out there in our sport. On every possible aspect of it. And it continues in the highest levels (where it get maybe even worse). It seems to me that, with enough dedication, whatever school of thought you are in, you will get there if this is what you really want. Thus, of course, my question isn't "wich one is best ?" as I am a firm believer of mastering fundamentals before even thinking of going experimental. I mean if your aim is to devellop strenght, start whith mastering some sets of pullups, pushups and squats before going fancy. In this regard, the AIDA education gives a very solid base of "pushups, pullups, squats" type training before looking further (my opinion only).

The point of this thread is to point out what I now call the freediving confusion. And since I see some pretty sharp, educated minds around here, I would love to hear what you have to say about that :

What are the hot topics of debate in the trade ? (Diet, training, equalisation technique, adaptation / evolution, etc) ? I mean why in the classroom my master instructor emphasized on the danger of hyperventilation as the gospel, and day later hyperventilate as a pig in order to do his STA PB ? (One of hundred examples I guess).

Why our sport seems to be specially subjected to missunderstandings, disagreement, but some radically, even opposite approach of training and eating would bring two athletes to the same depth ?

What at the issues possibly caused by this confusion ?

Any input is very much welcome, but let's stay cordial and respectfull of each others opinions and views of the topics that might be debated here. Articles to back-up claims would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks all for your help ! :)
On the subject of Hyperventilation prior to a static PB this isn’t so inconsistent. You have a spotter. You aren’t swimming. If you did pass out someone is there at your side. If you don’t hyperventilate you aren’t going to get to a PB. My PB is 10:05 and I hyperventilated for 5 min
 
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Aleksi

New Member
Aug 5, 2021
7
2
3
34
Hello everybody !
Thank you very much for the answers, keep bringing in the interesting stuffs ! :)
@Rik : thanks to underline the bioethic aspect, I never thought of that. I'll dig this question a bit more. Could you also clarify or develop your last paragraphe, it sounds interesting.

@grarena : And what would your PB be without hyperventilation ? Cheers !
 

hansa123

New Member
Feb 26, 2021
18
1
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Interesting, but also puzzling to me. According to theory, if you hyperventilate, your CO2 is lower, so the urge to breathe comes later. But then what about the Bohr effect? If the CO2 level is too low, less O2 is binding to hemoglobine. Accordingly, you would blackout earlier due to the lower partial pressure of O2 in the brain.
 

grarena

Active Member
Jan 19, 2019
107
30
43
65
Hello everybody !
Thank you very much for the answers, keep bringing in the interesting stuffs ! :)
@Rik : thanks to underline the bioethic aspect, I never thought of that. I'll dig this question a bit more. Could you also clarify or develop your last paragraphe, it sounds interesting.

@grarena : And what would your PB be without hyperventilation ? Cheers !
Probably 7-8 min
 

grarena

Active Member
Jan 19, 2019
107
30
43
65
Interesting, but also puzzling to me. According to theory, if you hyperventilate, your CO2 is lower, so the urge to breathe comes later. But then what about the Bohr effect? If the CO2 level is too low, less O2 is binding to hemoglobine. Accordingly, you would blackout earlier due to the lower partial pressure of O2 in the brain.
I’ve never blacked out. I’ve only started breathing because I couldn’t handle it anymore. As CO2 rises the affinity of O2 to hemoglobin decreases
 

Rik

In to diving medicine
Oct 4, 2002
177
29
118
@Rik : thanks to underline the bioethic aspect, I never thought of that. I'll dig this question a bit more. Could you also clarify or develop your last paragraphe, it sounds interesting.

@Aleksi Ah, that could open a potential can of worms. But your wish will be fulfilled.

Regarding hyperventilation; I think most freedivers are familiar with the classic picture of someone hyperventilating for a dive, performing rapid breathing in a quick succesion. However, it is much less discussed to which extend the deep full cyclical breaths can also cause hyperventilation. While we all learn that deep slow relaxed breaths slows down the heart beat, it is not always recognised that these breaths can also induce some hyperventilation, causing some of the improved time / depth in comperison with a "normal" breath.

Laryngospasm; the cause of "dry drownings" where a diver or swimmer drowns but doesn't inhale (or breathe) due to a persistend closed larynx. This phenomenon was debunked in the '80's when in turned out that all the articles describing the existance of dry drowning where based on two limited case-reports in the '30's. Currently it is often used in freediving to describe the inability of perform a rescue breath to a unconcious freediver. However, I am still wondering if the inability to perform a rescue breath in these cases is not due a inadequate opened airway, which is in any case quite difficult to perform when the diver is still in the water.

Lungsqueeze; both on this forum in the past and on facebook, divers resport once a while their experience with lungsqueeze and a bloody spit. There is with some regularly the discussion if this is due a actual lungsqueeze, which should ground the diver for some weeks, or a "benign" pharynx squeeze or blood from the sinusess. The question if such estimation can be made by only looking to the wrothy bloody spit, and if it is waranted to deal with any bood in the spit as if it could be a actual lungsqueeze.
 

Rik

In to diving medicine
Oct 4, 2002
177
29
118
T.a.v. Laryngospasm; I can recommend: C.W. Dueker Laryngospasm in Breath-hold diving pg. 102-107 in: Lindholm P, Pollock NW, Lundgren CEG, eds. Breath-hold diving. Proceedings of the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society/Divers Alert Network 2006 june 20-21 Workshop. Durham, NC: Divers Alert Network; 2006.

Originally it was accesable online through the rubicon foundation, but that site seems to be defunct. Found this site with the document: https://www.yumpu.com/en/document/v...ing-workshop-proceedings-divers-alert-network
 

Aleksi

New Member
Aug 5, 2021
7
2
3
34
Thank you everybody for those answers, it definitly gave me something to thinks about !
But one question that arrise from this topic is : how can we react in front of those disagreements about training , etc ? How to find our way in this confusion ?
A vast and interesting question I hope.
Good day everybody !
 
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