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Alpena residents learn to free dive

ALPENA, Mich. —  Students at Saturday’s free–diving class at the Plaza Pool spent most of their time holding their breath.

Free–divers differ from scuba divers in the fact that they don’t use any pressurized air. They dive with their own breath and a pair of flippers.

Saturday’s divers aimed to hold their breath for three minutes.

Instructor Nick Myers told WBKB taking a big gulp of air is only one part of staying under water.

“Part of the breathe-up technique before you hold your breath is to make sure that your bloodstream is very well oxygenated. And on an extended dive, most of the oxygen uses isn’t in our lungs, it’s actually what’s already in our blood.”

In other words, free–drivers practice breathing exercises to put oxygen in their blood before they take the plunge.

The class wrapped up on Sunday with an open-waters exam.