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Freediving USA
United States Freediving Team - APNEA USA is a non-profit organization established in 1998 to further the sport of Freediving in the USA and to establish training standards for the sport. Their mission is to promote the sport of freediving through safe and responsible activities and events with an emphasis on education and program development. more...

The Women of Freediving
Tanya Streeter is the latest freediving sensation. In just 18 months she has sent world records tumbling and is now set to take on the chaps who dominate the sport. More...

Tanya Streeter World Record Holder

On October 21, 1996 Mehgan Heaney-Grier established the first ever United States freedive record for both men and women when she plunged to 155 feet deep on a single breath of air. Less than one year later at the age of only 19 she went on to break her record by ten feet diving to 165 feet. More...

Mehgan Heaney-Grier

On June 6, 1998, Audrey Mestre Ferreras set the new Female Freediving World Record, reaching a depth of 115 meters (378 feet) in a tandem dive with her husband and world famous freediver Pipin Ferreras.

Audrey Ferreras
Her major achievement was obtained on May 13th, 2000. Off the coast of La Palma Island in Canary Islands, Spain, Audrey broke the Female World Record in Freediving, No Limits Category. She reached a depth of 412.5 feet (125 meters) in 2 minutes, 3 seconds. With this dive she became the Female World Champion as well as the 5th deepest person in the world. more...

There is nothing like the feeling of diving into the deep without the constrictions of a tank on your back and regulator in your mouth. And you can sneak up on fish without the bubbles! This sport has gained a lot in popularity in the last few years.

How to be a Freediver
Most people have been freediving without instruction for years. The International Association of Nitrox and Technical Divers (IANTD) has now introduced a whole range of freediving courses to choose from to increase the particular skills this sport involves. All the courses will be taught at IANTD facilities only and range from one to three days in duration.

The course will teach comfort and breath holding abilities, create and understanding of the history, physics, physiology and psychological factors involved in freediving. In-water training sessions in constant ballast techniques are part of the curriculum. This program will also increase the diver's safety through breathing procedures and emergency procedures.

There are four courses to choose from:

Snorkel/Skin Diver (surface to 15ft/5m)
Open Water Freediver (max. 33ft/10m)
Advanced Freediver (max. 66ft/20m)
Master Freediver Course (max. 99ft/30m)

Instructor and Instructor Trainer programs for the above are also available. Get more information from IANTD (The International Association of Nitrox and Technical Divers).

Freediving Speak

The term used to describe breath holding.

On only one breath of air, freedivers attempt to reach their maximum depth. They must be weighted perfectly so that they are able to sink but are not too have to fin back up. Freedivers cannot use the line to which the tag is attached to assist them.

No-limits apnea
The freediver descends with the aid of a ballast-filled sled that runs down a line. At the required depth, the diver stops and inflates a lifting bag that assists in the ascent.

Currently medical experts are predicting that death will follow if freedivers push the limits any further. This is perhaps the most controversial form of freediving, and is not recognized by any official sporting bodies.

The record is held by Pipin Ferreras.

The samba
As the body goes into blackout, the arms and legs convulse, giving the appearance that the diver is dancing the samba.

Dynamic apnea
Involves swimming horizontally as far as the freediver can on one breath of air. Monofins are a popular means of propulsion, as opposed to normal fins.

Mammalian diving reflex
This phenomenon is common among diving mammals (dolphins, seals, etc.). Human retain this reflex, which causes the heartbeat to slow down when the face is immersed in water.

Shallow water blackout (SWB)
Caused by a dramatic reduction in the partial pressure of oxygen during an ascent, leading to hypoxia. As a result, the freediver experiences unconsciousness. There are no indicators to predict the onset of SWB.

For safety reasons, freedivers never train alone. Their buddy is referred to as a spotter and will step in to assist if there is any sign of a problem. The spotter is trained in the necessary first aid techniques.

Static apnea
Takes place in a swimming pool, with freedivers lying in a position in which it is impossible to breathe, and remaining in this position until they need to breath. Towards the end of their attempt, they must indicate to a spotter that they are OK by responding to physical signals.

Yoga, meditation, hypnosi...
Many freedivers use these techniques to slow their heartbeat and breathing rate. Many practice visualization techniques to empower themselves with the belief that they can achieve their target. World-record diver Pipin Ferreras visualizes that he is being injected into the ocean's depths by a syringe.

Desert Divers (Dahab, Red Sea)

Associations & Information

IAFD (International Association of Free Divers)

Redefine Your Limits

Freediver Magazine UK

Free Diving USA
Free Dive Hawaii
Diving Canada
Pippin Ferreras

Free Diving Manual, Tanya Streeter
Freedive! Terry Maas
Free Diving: With Mask, Snorkel, and Fins, John Black Lee
Free Dive Videos
Snorkeling and Free Diving, Jim Flagg, Tom Scott


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