Friday, March 11, 2011

speed apnea

Inspired by Peter Pedersen's 200 meter in 2 minutes, a legendary dive in freedive circles, the first time somebody did the 200,

i wanted to test if i could even do half that: 100 in a minute. 100 under normal conditions is a bit tough, even if you can do more than 150, since the hard part tends to be between 50 and 100, when the contractions are at their meanest and your body isn't fully into oxygen-saving dive mode yet. Normally it would take me about 1 minute and 20 seconds to do 100, so i'd have to sprint a bit. Best i'd done sprinting full-out is about 23 seconds for 50 -not very fast. So i'd have to go nearly full-out and maintain that for a minute. I was worried about that: it'd burn a lot of oxygen and probably hurt loads. But i tried, somewhat apprehensively and reluctantly.

The advantage of speeding is that you don't really have time to think, so it never gets mentally hard. The disadvantage is that if you really go all out, you start hurting quite badly quite quickly after the turn. Though 100 within a minute is not so tough, to do 200 in 2 is borderline unbelievable. To maintain that pace for such a long time is a monster achievement, and it took a couple of years of much slower long dynamics until a new king of speed and distance arose in the form of Fred Sessa, who did 255 in 2:37

Fred commented afterwards that it hurt pretty bad at 100, and got progressively worse after that.

It is an interesting discipline, more finswimming than freediving perhaps, but could be useful as training. I wonder how quick Fred and Peter can do the 100. Probably faster than the current official CMAS world record, which is 42.85 seconds, held by Cosimo Garofalo

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