However, the good news is that its gain in popularity means there are other dedicated clubs around. We strongly recommend finding a qualified instructor and doing a proper course if you want to try freediving. Start by contacting one of these groups to find a local club or instructor:
Mainly what we do is a little training to help us go further underwater on a single breath - people train to go deep/distance, for under water hockey/rugby, some for spearfishing - mainly it's safely playing underwater without anything other than the air in your lungs.
But when we're in the pool, anyone who is a UniDive member can come along and play - but you do have to be a Unidive member.
At the moment we are in the UQ pool on Thursdays after the usual shed meeting and play underwater rugby. If you want lanes to yourself to practice breath-hold training, come along to the 7pm sessions when we have the whole pool to ourselves (and make sure you bring a friend!)
There are a few things you should know before jumping in:
There is no coach or trainer, each buddy team looks after themselves, but there are some rules that everyone has to follow:
All pool training is conducted with a competent buddy. Never freedive alone!
We conduct every session with a one up/one down safety protocol.
The "one up" has a primary safety role to watch his partner's entire swim and be focused on this task alone.
If in doubt of a diver's state we pull them up immediately.
We use the surface protocol after every swim.
We announce the distance or duration of each swim before we start it.
All big swims are conducted with direct supervision of the freediver.
Snorkel in the mouth when diving.
We look beyond our lane to ensure safety of all.
Any hypoxic incident results in the end of diving/training for that diver for the day.
We regularly practice our safety drills.
We support each other and work within our personal limits.
We plan our training sessions and work to that plan.
No competitive spirit, that can increase the risk of Sambas and BlackOut issues - simply fun!
Surface Protocol means 1) Remove mask 2) give ok signal with hand 3) say "I'm OK".
Having a buddy watch your entire swim (swimming along above you, ready to pull you up if anything goes wrong) is absolutely unquestionably mandatory. If you do not comply you will be asked to leave by the pool staff (they insist upon this rule too) and reporting to the safety committee who will consider whether you are welcome at future pool sessions. This is not just for your safety, but also for the reputation of the sport - if the pool staff cannot trust participants to follow the rules of the sport, they will ban it.
The only gear you need are swimmers & mask/goggles, even fins are optional.
This safety video is required viewing before the session please.
And if you get time maybe some of the other safety videos found here.