Almost every day we work with pearl oysters that are stored on our maritime concession from 6 to 8 meter deep. The divers have to get there every morning and afternoon, take time to detach or to tie several baskets of oysters before getting back to the surface. Each dive lasts 1 to 3 minutes and has to be repeated a dozen times, in the morning and in the afternoon. To make it easier, and for security reasons, this process is done free diving, meaning the divers should be able to hold their breath during that time. They indeed require very good physical abilities but also they need to improve their techniques.
At the pearl farm, 4 of us have applied for a free dive lesson at Hemisphere Sub, a diving club, with a French free dive champion, Francis Le Gall, as a teacher. He gave us many advices and trained us to stay longer underwater without oxygen. Firstly we learnt how to do to breath correctly and improve our capacity, and then he taught us some good stretching. Personally, I totally ignored some of those muscles we worked with. The first day, we trained for static apnea (holding our breath the longest), and the second day we went for the deep blue and tried to reach the deepest we could, for course the security and recue techniques were taught and performed before. The results were really satisfying because in average we stayed 3 minutes of apnea and reached 30m deep (with a maximum at 46 meters!!)
It was a very interesting experience that will help us professionally but also, I hope, will help us bringing some more fish when we go spearfishing!