walt-333-nov-staNovember 30, 2014 - We Freedive Suunto Series Static Competition - 1st Place

I am thinking this is important enough to cover it specifically. For this particular static, I did about the most minimal breatheup I could ever imagine. I got in the water about three and a half minutes before my OT. My breathing was normal relaxed tidal breathing until about 15 seconds before OT. Then I did 3 relaxed breaths (about 80% inhales followed by relaxed, not forced, exhales to FRC), a full final inhale, no packs, and then the static.

This was the first time I have ever tried a no-warmup static in competition. I really hope this direction I am taking works, because it has great advantages in competition.

  • I stay in the water a relatively short time, so I am less likely to get cold.
  • I don't have to worry about searching for a buddy for my warmup. It is a much easier question to ask someone to show up 3 minutes before my OT rather than the much more extended breatheups I have done historically. In the past, my breatheups have varied in length all the way up to starting the full 45 minutes before OT.
  • Doing this kind of breatheup, the risk of blackout is much much less. Currently, I am unable to hold that long.
  • In competitions where there are several events in one day, such as the 2014 We Freedive Suunto Series Final (STA, DYN, and DNF in one day) on December 21, it will be much less exhausting to go without warmup holds, I think.

I have done this kind of breathing for my first two warmup holds since early 2008, almost back to when I first started dry training, so I am very familiar with how these holds should progress. My PB static using this breathing has steadily increased over the years and now stands at 5:39. I am currently poised to blow that PB away though.

I have said for a long time that if I could get these no-warmup statics to 6:00, I would ditch warmup holds forever. I have already done that with dynamics. Now is the time, I think, to go after that 6:00 and forever be free of warmup holds.

I have the perfect opportunity to do that this month, as we have a competition soon, and I will get plenty of training days in between now and then.

Notice I have covered mostly the practical aspects of this subject. There are also technical reasons that no-warmup statics seem to be beneficial, at least for some. Ever since Tom Sietas made no-warmup stuff popular, there has been much said and studied about them. For me, in terms of statics, it boils down to two non-technical things - consistency and length. If I end up consistently doing holds in competition longer than about 6 minutes (my competition PB being 6:04), then this will have been a success.

One thing I have noticed lately in training is that doing 5+ statics in training seems to be really helping them get easier. It is almost like doing a mini-CO2 table, I think.

I have also started going most of the static without knowing the time. I am liking it a lot. I can focus completely on what is happening in the static and not worry about any "expected" time. I am finding statics very enjoyable this way.

As an addendum to this article, in late 2015, I finally reached my goal of 6 minute no-warmup statics. I so far have achieved a max of 6:36. That was in early 2016. Good bye warmup holds.