27 Aug Training to improve your freediving
Traditionally, diving (more specifically scuba diving) has been known as a bit of a “lazy mans” sport. Although fitness greatly helps your bottom time and general experience diving, many divers have traditionally gotten away with just not needing to, the common consensus that there is a full tank of air on their back.
But the fresh sport of freediving is bringing a new generation of diver, and in turn changing the traditional concept of diving. With the only tank of air you have being your lungs, fitness has never affected diving more. Hence, freedivers are turning to various forms of training in an effort to really improve their performance.
So how do you train for freediving?
Freediving is a new sport, and exercise science is continually being developed. A good place to start is to look at the training methods some of the worlds best competitive freedivers. Here is a few forms of training used by freedivers in preparation for competition. Combined, this is a balanced training program for any aspiring freedivers.
High Intensity Interval Training or HIIT Training is a discipline which consists of short periods of high intensity training, followed by a lower intensity exercise, repeated continually until failure.
Australian Record Holder and our favourite freediving instructor Adam Stern is all about HIIT training, specifically Crossfit. He uses his sessions to mimic the sort of endurance required when on his dives and uses HIIT sessions to do that. His main focus areas – Core, Legs / Glutes and Respiratory Muscles. You can read more about his training regime on his blog post here.
Many competitive freedivers use yoga disciplines to assist with their freediving training. Freediving requires inner discipline and calming of the mind. Hence using yoga techniques, freedivers learn to find inner calm, overcome fears and focus their thoughts on the task ahead. It also offers many benefits in the way of stretching, leading to increased flexibility and fluid movement in the water.
Freediving is an in-water sport, so therefore in water training is a must. Pool training sessions consisting of static holds and dynamic training help to increase your CO2 tolerance so you can safely dive longer without experiencing the urge to breathe. Adam Stern has a great blog post about getting started on pool training here.
Want to learn to freedive? We run freediving courses in Sydney on the Northern Beaches with Australian Record Holder and PADI Instructor Trainer Adam Stern. Click here for more information on our freediving courses.
Image supplied by Suunto Dive.