During my courses, students are bombarded with a lot of information and new techniques. The one technique I spend the most time on without question is efficient entry technique. I typically spend more than an hour spread over 2 pool sessions just working on entries.
An efficient entry will get you through the first 15ft. of the water column with the least amount of energy. As you probably have realized, that first 15 feet is the hardest to move through as you’re more buoyant in the top of the water column.
This is the exact step by step process I teach in my classes.
Step 1 – Have fins floating on the surface, not hanging down underwater and have your arms pointing down towards the bottom.
Step 2 – Take the biggest breath you can, pre equalize your ears and spit your snorkel out.
Step 3 – Bend 90 degrees at the waist.
Step 4 – Pull one knee towards your chest and then drive the single leg straight up in the air so your fin is out of the water and pointing straight up at the sky.
Step 5 – When your leg is actually sticking out of the water and not before, do a strong arm pull which will pull your fins underwater.
Step 6 – Kick while you bring one hand to your nose for equalizing (keep it there) and the other hand straight over your head.
This works perfectly with a speargun as well, as you can see in photo 6. I have posted a video of how I do the entry with a gun @ www.Immersionfreediving.com/entry
Spearfisherman typically have their fins hanging well below the surface of the water before the entry, which is often caused by overweighting. Having your fins hanging below the water will require you to do needless work to pull those fins up and out of the water, which is why you want them flat on the surface before the start.
Most students start the entry process by trying to pull with their hands first while they are floating flat on the surface. You should easily be able to visualize how inefficient trying to pull your whole body underwater is while lying flat. That is why you don’t even think about pulling until you’ve bent 90 degrees at the waist and your fin is out of the water straight above you. Now you are pointing down straight like an arrow and a one arm pull will easily propel you underwater.
Freedive spearfishing is a sport where you are trying to accomplish as much as possible on a single breath. Taking the time to think through and fix any inefficiency in your dives will lead to an increase in performance on every dive. All these little details make a surprising difference.
I run 2 – 3 classes a month year round in Fort Lauderdale. Find out more information by visiting www.Immersionfreediving.com.