Free diving, also known as breath-hold diving, is a type of skin diving that does not involve the use of scuba tanks or other underwater breathing equipment. Instead, a free diver relies only on a single breath of air taken at the surface. Free divers very rarely have to worry about decompression or "the bends" and can move much more freely and unencumbered underwater than traditional scuba divers. There is a very mental side to free diving -- many divers practice yoga and meditation in order to relax and lower their oxygen consumption while underwater.
Free diving has been practiced by many cultures through the ages as a way to spearfish and dive for pearls. Today, free diving is more often done for pleasure or sport, though some people still spearfish this way. Many professionals vie for the record of deepest or longest dive in a number of different competitive divisions. The sport is more popular in Europe than it is in America.
If you should search any online databases or OPACs for more information, use the keywords FREE DIVING, FREEDIVING, BREATH-HOLD DIVING, or SNORKELING for best results. To search under subject, use SKIN DIVING or UNDERWATER DIVING.
"Freediving page 1." http://www.geocities.com/~freediver/freedivingpage.htm. Accessed: 1 Oct. 2000.
This is probably the most comprehensive site on the Internet concerning free diving. It has some information about current records and events and an extensive page of links to other sources.
"The UBUC Freediving Page." http://www.bris.ac.uk/Depts/union/Diving/freedive/freedive.htm. Accessed: 2 Oct. 2000.
Part of the site of the free diving club at the University of Bristol, UK, this page has information on the physiology, gear, and dangers of free diving. It also has a link to a small but enjoyable photo gallery.
"Pipin Productions." http://www.freediving.net/indexing.htm. Accessed: 1 Oct. 2000.
Besides being the official website of Pipin and Audrey Ferrerus, both champion free divers, this site also has some discussion of the history and physiological affects of free diving.
"Umberto Pelizzari Web Site." http://www.softntt.it/pelizzari/index_en.htm. Accessed: 1 Oct. 2000.
The offical site of Umberto Pelizzari, another professional, record-holding free diver.
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This pathfinder was written by Zach Tomaszewski for LIS 601, Fall 2000.
An electronic copy can be found at http://www2.hawaii.edu/~ztomasze/pathfinder.html.
Intended audience: 10 years and older.
PLEASE DO NOT ABUSE THIS PATHFINDER.