Although reading isn’t quite the same as doing, it’s always a good idea to do some reading about your hobbies and interests. The same holds true if you’re a keen freediver. If you read freediving books, you can reap many benefits, whether you’re a brand-new freediver or a highly experienced one.
While freediving books can never replace an official freediving course, such as one from the respected organization PADI, they can give you the chance to learn some helpful and professional tips from scientists and athletes alike. These tips can help you to hone your freediving abilities. So, what are the top freediving books for you to check out? Here are six of the best on the market today.
Umberto Pelizzari – Manual of Freediving
This freediving manual is one of the very best freediving books on the market today. Written by the world record holder, Umberto Pelizzari, it is a must-read thanks to how comprehensive it is. While it isn’t an actual learning tool to replace proper training, it offers excellent visual descriptions and extremely detailed drawings.
Whether you’re new to freediving or already experienced, this book will enable you to improve exponentially. In this book, you find both practical training tips and scientific explanations, a history of freediving, advice about water and land training, pool exercises, finning techniques, equalization, a safety section, and even dietary tips to point you in the right direction.
Japp Verbaas – Longer & Deeper – Cross Training For Freediving & Spearfishing
This manual has been written specifically for freedivers and those who want to try their hand at spearfishing. It enables you to achieve improved performance, deeper dives, and longer periods underwater. The book focuses not only on pool training but also on land exercises.
It includes detailed posts about how the muscles and body work, alongside top exercises from freedivers, weightlifters, and sprinters. The result is a complete training program to help you stay fit all year round, thanks to user-friendly explanations from the perspective of a freediver on how to train your muscles to hypoxia, reduce leg muscle burn, and minimize drag.
Umberto Pelizzari – Specific Training For Freediving – Deep, Static & Dynamic Apnea
The second book on this list by record holder Umberto Pelizzari, this manual gives experienced freedivers practical advice to enable them to progress. Inside, you’ll discover valuable information, including detailed training timetables and workout plans, and interviews with some of the top freedivers in the world.
You’ll also discover insights into Pelizzari’s own methods and techniques which center around traditional strategies with an innovative twist.
Stig Avall Severinsen -Breatheology – The Art Of Conscious Breathing
Although it may appear that this isn’t a freediving book, it’s certainly a very helpful manual for anyone who wants to excel at freediving, thanks to its focus on breath-holding techniques. While it doesn’t contain explanations about how to hold your breath for incredibly long periods or how to be a freediver, it does help you learn how to breathe correctly so that you can become better at freediving and reap the benefits in your daily life.
The book centers around breathing techniques and theoretical explanations about breathing’s importance, and the practical exercises help you improve your breath-holding so you can enjoy health benefits. The author of this book, Stig Avall Severinsen, certainly knows what he’s talking about. He is a freediving world champion with years of experience practicing breathing techniques and learning which ones are most effective.
The result is an in-depth manual about the five kinds of breathing – trained, powerful, sustained, soothing, and therapeutic – and the ways in which they can help you manage your stress better, increase your energy levels, reduce chronic pain, and live a healthier, longer life as well as freedive more effectively.
Jacques Mayol – Homo Delphinus
Written by Jacques Mayol, the reputed grandfather of freediving. This book takes readers on a fascinating journey through the history of his passion for marine life as well as his world record-breaking dives, including his impressive 100 meters in just one breath.
Thanks to its beautiful photographs, this book isn’t just a wonderful read for any freediver but also a fantastic addition to your coffee table collection.
James Nestor – Deep
James Nestor, Deep’s author, is well-known for living an adventurous lifestyle. From living with farmers in Vanuatu to participating in surfing expeditions to Norway, his life has taken some fascinating twists and turns. During one of these adventurous trips to Greece, he first discovered freediving.
The sport fascinated him, leading him to find out more about our body’s capabilities and the secrets of the sea. One of the books listed as Editor’s Choice in the New York Times Book Review, this book introduces readers to freediving while also adding some interesting facts about marine life. While it’s a must-read for any freediver, it’s also an interesting read for anyone curious about life beneath the waves.
Can Books Tell Me All I Need To Know About Freediving?
While books are an interesting and helpful addition to your freediving practice, they can’t possibly replace the benefits of actually doing some real practice, preferably with a qualified instructor. No matter how detailed and useful a freediving manual may be, it can’t give you the practical experience of learning the techniques for yourself in a safe environment.
It’s recommended that you make these books part of your freediving equipment. Along with your mask, fins, and dive watch. But don’t rely on them entirely to teach you everything there is to know about this sport. There’s a lot more to training for freediving than simply reading about it. However, picking up a book on the subject and familiarizing yourself with the basics is a great place to start.
You can read more articles about the various types of diving here.
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