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Freediving and Spearfishing

Old 04-04-2012, 06:05 PM
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Default Freediving and Spearfishing

Who's done it and how did you get started? I want to learn. I am in excellent aerobic condition as I run 10-15 miles a week, but I'm not sure how to learn to hold my breath for extended periods. If you can give personal experience or direct me to a website with information I would appreciate it. Seems fun
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Old 04-04-2012, 06:56 PM
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A lot of dive shops offer courses in freediving. I'd highly recommend checking out one in your area. I can't give any recommendations.

I spearfish, but more often on scuba. My breathhold isn't the greatest (asthma), so I more often use tanks.

I would also highly recommend that you do this with a buddy. Most freedivers practice one up and one down. Shallow water blackout is quite dangerous and a buddy at the surface.

I sent you a PM with a good forum filled with lots of folks that will be willing to offer advice.
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Old 04-04-2012, 07:24 PM
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See post above. Shallow water black out is a real danger when free diving. Go to your local dive shop and learn how to do it properly. Once you understand the way you breathe, hop in the pool and get to practicing. I can handle free diving to the depths of 25-30' it takes me too long to clear my ears and lose valuable down time any deeper. I much rather strap on the tank and enjoy my down time. It takes a really special person to do what Shari Day and crew do. They are diving some serious depths free diving and spearing. Oh by the way your run around the block ain't going to help you much when it comes down to holding your breath. It will help you on your recovery time thou. My good diving buddy is way out of shape and he can almost double my down time.
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Old 04-04-2012, 09:11 PM
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medium size pneumatic gun is my preference. spear should have a detachable tip. I hate banded guns but some guys love em. If you wear a wetsuit get a weight belt, quick release of course, to counter the boyency [sp?] otherwise you'll be fighting it on your descent which will tire you out plus you get down quicker and can hang on the bottom easier. There's really nothing to it. Also, most public pools don't allow breath holding exercises anymore due to liability although you might get away with it. One more thing, always, always, always wear a dive knife. Just in case you get fetched up in some mono or netting. Could happen. One more thing, get a black silicon sided mask to reduce glare (mirror effect) on the inside of the glass.
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Old 04-05-2012, 11:01 AM
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You can buy low volume masks that take less air to equalize. It's not much of a difference, but every little bit helps.
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Old 04-05-2012, 11:35 AM
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Look up PFI. They teach courses all over the country.
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Old 04-05-2012, 11:42 AM
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I had a buddy who freedived and shot fish at 100 ft routinely! He wore a wetsuit, and a weightbelt which made him slightly negatively buoyant, so he went down with little effort. He knew he could always drop the weights and shoot to the surface, which gave him the confidence and relaxation to maximize his air.

A lot of freediving is mental.
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Old 04-05-2012, 11:55 AM
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Originally Posted by cfarmd View Post

Who's done it and how did you get started? I want to learn. I am in excellent aerobic condition as I run 10-15 miles a week, but I'm not sure how to learn to hold my breath for extended periods. If you can give personal experience or direct me to a website with information I would appreciate it. Seems fun

I would not recommend a dive shop for freediving -- for scuba diving, yes, definitely a dive shop. My suggestion is to hook up with a local freediving club. They are everywhere. Also attend some spearfishing competitions, express your desire and ask.
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Old 04-05-2012, 12:15 PM
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Get out there and practice with a buddy. Start shallow in water that you are comfortable in and work your way up from there. Even if you don't shoot anything just being in the water and getting used to diving and watching your buddy are all great practice. If down the road you have the money for a class and really like freediving then take one. If you're thinking about buying a gun, start used as you will quickly want something bigger and better, perhaps even custom made, once you fall in love with the sport.
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Old 04-05-2012, 12:26 PM
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I'm in sc and wondering how far out will I have to be before the water clears up enough to see
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Old 04-05-2012, 12:49 PM
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Maybe I should just do scuba haha we don't have enough shallow places in onslow bay to.justify free diving
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Old 04-05-2012, 01:50 PM
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Great advice given on here so far. Learn what a samba is and what a swb is. I'll post a great vid for you on free diving when I get home. I love it. It's mostly what I do. Check out spearboard.com as there is some good stuff on there.
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Old 04-05-2012, 02:18 PM
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my only concern with free diving is that most of the structure near the beach is 50+ foot and I don't think I can dive that deep without air. What about those small air bottles that just fit in your mouth?
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Old 04-05-2012, 02:22 PM
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Originally Posted by cfarmd View Post

What about those small air bottles that just fit in your mouth?

Don't even think about using one. If you don't know what it is and how to use it you WILL kill yourself, I guarantee it. In fact, you can kill yourself with one of those (any compressed air) in just 4-ft of water.

You don't need to dive to the bottom ... you just need to dive to where the fish are.
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Old 04-05-2012, 02:27 PM
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Lots of folks do it including many of my friends. Make sure you carry a knife.


Dead free diver identified



Key West - Detectives say they've notified next of kin for a free diver who died over the weekend.
42 year old Gary Cagle of Stock Island died of apparent salt water drowning. The preliminary autopsy results confirmed this, although there are other tests that have to be completed prior to a final autopsy result being released. Cagle died after spearing a large Goliath Grouper, commonly called a Jewfish. He was free diving in about 25 feet of water about a half mile off of Smather's Beach. Detective Mark Coleman said it looks like the fish wrapped the line attached to the spear around the victim's wrist. The fish then went into a hole in a coral rock effectively pinning the man to the bottom of the ocean. The victim was apparently unable to get free.
He was last seen by friends Saturday at noon when he left shore on his jet ski. He was reported missing Saturday night and subsequently found Sunday morning by the U.S. Coast Guard and Key West Police Divers.
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Old 04-05-2012, 02:33 PM
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Go to www.spearfishingplanet.com

There is a free-diving club in Wilmington, you can find info on them there. Be very careful, the chances of an accident are much higher free-diving than on scuba.
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Old 04-05-2012, 03:43 PM
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Originally Posted by jcbadabing View Post
Go to www.spearfishingplanet.com

There is a free-diving club in Wilmington, you can find info on them there. Be very careful, the chances of an accident are much higher free-diving than on scuba.
yeah I'm starting to get that picture. I wish scuba equipment wasn't so freaking expensive. Anyone able to give a rough idea on what it costs to buy basic good quality scuba gear?
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Old 04-05-2012, 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by CayoHueso View Post
Lots of folks do it including many of my friends. Make sure you carry a knife.


Dead free diver identified



Key West - Detectives say they've notified next of kin for a free diver who died over the weekend.
42 year old Gary Cagle of Stock Island died of apparent salt water drowning. The preliminary autopsy results confirmed this, although there are other tests that have to be completed prior to a final autopsy result being released. Cagle died after spearing a large Goliath Grouper, commonly called a Jewfish. He was free diving in about 25 feet of water about a half mile off of Smather's Beach. Detective Mark Coleman said it looks like the fish wrapped the line attached to the spear around the victim's wrist. The fish then went into a hole in a coral rock effectively pinning the man to the bottom of the ocean. The victim was apparently unable to get free.
He was last seen by friends Saturday at noon when he left shore on his jet ski. He was reported missing Saturday night and subsequently found Sunday morning by the U.S. Coast Guard and Key West Police Divers.
Which brings me to my next point.....NEVER NEVER dive alone. And carry a dive knife.
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Old 04-05-2012, 05:17 PM
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Originally Posted by bsh102 View Post
See post above. Shallow water black out is a real danger when free diving. Go to your local dive shop and learn how to do it properly. Once you understand the way you breathe, hop in the pool and get to practicing. I can handle free diving to the depths of 25-30' it takes me too long to clear my ears and lose valuable down time any deeper. I much rather strap on the tank and enjoy my down time. It takes a really special person to do what Shari Day and crew do. They are diving some serious depths free diving and spearing. Oh by the way your run around the block ain't going to help you much when it comes down to holding your breath. It will help you on your recovery time thou. My good diving buddy is way out of shape and he can almost double my down time.
A 14 year old told me to get my head vertical when adjusting your nose.

I went from can`t, to can, that fast.

Cheers,
GFS
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Old 04-05-2012, 05:18 PM
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spearboard.com is a good site also.
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