ABC in plain English
“ABC” is not the acronym for Airways, Bleeding and Coma that is typically taught to Scandinavians in terms of administrating first aid to trauma patients. It is instead an attempt to clarify and demystify the language and vocabulary commonly used in Free-diving circles.
What exactly is Free-diving? 

Basically, all diving that does not use any externally supplied air supply. It might sound too technical and is probably not what most people would say, or think, when asked to define the sport.

Free-diving is huge. There are a lot of people and organizations out there that use the Dolphin as a symbol to represent the sport. 

On the other hand, there are others who would much rather talk about the characters from the Big Blue movie to attempt to represent the sport and what it is all about.  Even the most novice diver will have heard the names of Jagques Mayol and Enzo Mayorca and can easily imagine the sport thru their eyes.  It is however virtually impossible to convey the feeling either via words or pictures from a free-diver to a non-free-diver.  It just has to be experienced first hand.

Why education and training?

1)To become a better free diver.

Now, “better” does not necessarily mean to just go deeper or to hold your breath longer.  A good free diver has a sense of own potential but even more importantly, understands the current physiological limits.  You need to bring respect for the depth and above all, be a safe dive partner in order to enjoy this sport over the long run.

2) To fully appreciate the risks associated with free diving/APNEA.

You have to distinguish between recreational snorkeling and APNEA.  They are two completely separate events.  I don’t intend to over dramatize free diving, or APNEA, as advanced free diving is better known as, but I don’t want to understate it either.  There are impacts to the body from APENA that you need to be aware of and seriously consider before participating in this sport.  For example, you would not expect anyone to participate in scuba diving without being properly trained and certified.  Why would APNEA be any different in that regards?  There are certain inherent risks in both sports that one has to get educated about in order to make the activities more fun, safer and more accessible to more people.

Different levels and categories within Free-diving
Most people will try some free-diving while on a nice sunny vacation or whenever they feel like it and the environment is available.  There are others who are even more serious about the sport.  Some of them intend to simply get better and some eventually intend to compete in the sport.  Over the years, certain categories of free-diving have emerged.  Some categories are for Competition purposes and others for Exhibition purposes only.  Below, I have summarized the main activities of the officially recognized categories.

Constant Weight

Variable Weight

This category is by far the most physically challenging within the sport of Free-diving. Here you have to descend and then ascend under your own propulsion.  It is called “Constant Weight” because you’re not allowed to alter your weight once you start your dive.  You can’t for example drop your weight-belt at the bottom to make your ascent easier.  What goes down must come up. In this category, you’re allowed to alter your weight during the descent and ascent of the dive profile.  Typically, you’ll descend, headfirst, holding on to a weighted sled down to your maximum depth.  The weight on the sled can not be more than 30kg or one third of the divers weight whichever is more.  For the ascent, the free-diver comes up alongside a rope using fins to propel upwards.
No Limit

Static Apnea

If you mention the movie, the Big Blue, most people will recognize this category as the most dramatic and spectacular category of free-diving.  In this category, the free-diver descends using a weighted sled and then ascends up using an inflatable airbag that pulls him up alongside a rope.  I highly recommend that you click on the link here to read the story on how the current Swedish record in this category was set.  It really gives you the insight on what is involved.
Svenskt no limit rekord.

In short, hold your breath for as long as possible while in a resting, stationary, position.  You’re essentially face down in the water while floating on the surface.  It is incredible the times you can achieve with proper training and technique.


Dynamic Apnea

Free Immersson

Dynamic is the terminology to describe someone swimming under the surface in a pool.  It is a matter of preference if you do it in a 25meter or 50meter swimming pool.  It is just a matter of availability.  There is even a category of Dynamic Apnea that does not make use of fins.  The records show category with fins.

This category is not particularly well known even within Free-diving.  In this category you can not use fins at all.  To descend, you have to pull yourself downwards alongside a rope and to ascend, you either swim or pull yourself up to the surface


ABC courses focus on free-diving.  If you’re interested in product information, please visit our Webshop where you’ll find ABC about products and all the rest. the >>the shop<<