Welcome to the not-so-secret freediving training diary of David Mellor
Following his recent victory at the BFA (British Freediving Association) National Depth Championship in Chepstow, David enjoyed 10 days of freediving training in Kalamata, Greece. We caught up with him to find out how his training went.
David’s Freediving Training in Kalamata
I have just finished 10 days freediving training in Kalamata Greece. I trained there as it’s similar conditions to Nice where I will be competing in the World Championships.
Previously I had been doing some cold water training in Vobster and Chepstow so Kalamata was a lovely change. The conditions there are pretty much perfect.
Stavros and Nicholas along with their interns have a fabulous set up, you have safety on every dive and on the main line you have a counter balance system along with Nicholas with his scooter. I rented a room from Stavros 200mtrs from the centre so everything was super easy.
Freediving Training in Kalamata – Training Routine and Focus
My alarm would be set at 7am every morning and I would start my pre-dive routine. I start with back and shoulder stretches and then some diaphragm stretches and then finish with equalisation exercises. Breakfast would be 1 banana and a fruit juice and then to the centre for 9am. It’s a 10 min boat ride out to the mark and 9 times out of 10 the water is super flat, the wind usually gets up about 11.30 but we are usually finished by then.
I had seen some bottom camera footage of myself and thought I looked a little rushed getting the tag and decided that I would do some deep hangs so I would feel more comfortable at depth. That was my plan for the first few days and it went well, I did some nice 50 m dives and then counted to 10 very slowly at the bottom, it felt nice and I even did a 53 m hang and stayed around a little longer!
Happy with that progress I moved on to my old favourite, equalisation.
Luckily for me one of the other divers was a Frenchman called Max Gardien, he’s a bit of an equalisation guru, he can hands-free with a mask to 90 m, so I did his two day course.
Max has superb knowledge and taught me many tricks and drills to help, not an instant fix but really good sound techniques which I am currently trying. I would definitely recommend Max to all levels of divers, it’s clear he has studied equalisation for many years.
My next few days in the water were spent trying out some of the new things I’d learnt.
Before I started chasing depth I wanted to see how much air I could have in my cheeks at 50 m, so I spent a couple of sessions doing this.
A couple of the dives felt great, I arrived at the plate with plenty of air, enough I was thinking to get me way past 60 m. It’s still work in progress at the moment as I also had a couple of failed attempts.
While freediving training in Kalamata I had been given the news that Mike Board had decided not to take part in the world championships, for those of you who haven’t heard why I would say read his blog, it’s an incredible story and thank goodness it has a happy ending.
Mike is an inspiration to me, a person I look up to and he is so helpful with any questions I have, he is based on Gili T and it’s one of my favourite places to train. His absence means I am now doing a CNF dive, so I thought it would be a good idea to try some no fins dives before leaving.
I only did a couple of sessions and was pleased to achieve a 44 m dive – a new CNF PB for me! I’mm also pleased as I think there is still more left in the tank. I still have a lot more work to do and progress at the moment is slow but I am still in good spirits.
I have now moved to Villefranche in readiness for the world championships, it’s getting very exciting now.!!
Missed David’s last blog? Catch up with everything, here:
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