Dive Specific Exercises

Strength training includes a large number of targeted exercises. We have listed three examples with some hints on how they can improve your diving performance. Improved physical strength can increase your confidence in using the equipment. Thinking about how certain exercises affect diving can motivate you during training.


Standing up in full diving gear can be a challenge, especially on a wobbly boat or during a difficult boarding and alighting from shore. A training program that includes standing up exercises and knee bends will make this easier for you. Sit on a sturdy chair without armrests and stand up straight. Start with 10 repetitions. Perform this exercise twice a week or until it is no longer strenuous. Increase to three times a week or add weights and/or skip the chair. Use dumbbells or weights from your weight belt to add resistance.

Preventive rowing

Climbing a dive ladder or lifting various items of equipment places the most strain on the back and arm muscles. Preventive rowing specifically trains these muscle groups. Stand a little further than shoulder width. Bend your knees and hips so that you can bend your upper body over your feet. Your back must remain straight throughout the exercise. Hold the weights directly under your chest in your hands. Raise the weight to the chest and then let it slowly and controlled sink back to the starting position.

Upright rowing

The shoulders and arms are most strained when lifting diving equipment. In addition, the shoulder and elbow joints tend to overexertion injuries. If you are not used to lifting heavy things outside of diving trips, you may easily confuse the resulting pain with other diving conditions. By training these areas, you can improve the muscle strength in your shoulders. Stand with outstretched arms and slightly wider than shoulder width. Pull the weight on your body up to your shoulders. Hold your elbows slightly higher than your hands. Slowly lower the weight back to the starting position. Perform the desired number of repetitions.


A dive must be well planned and the equipment properly maintained. Your body is the most important part of your equipment and it also needs maintenance. Sufficient physical strength is essential for safe diving. Understanding the procedures and benefits of strength training can help you prepare for the physical challenges of diving. Fitness planning is like dive planning. Set up a plan and follow it to achieve the best results. Begin with simple exercises and increase as your ability increases. Pay attention to your body rhythms to avoid overexertion and injury. Plan your training and train according to your plan. Improve your strength and strengthen your diving skills.

Physiology of muscle formation

Regular strength training maintains muscle mass, bone mass, connective tissue and increases the number of activities you can perform without any problems. With more strength you will also have more fun diving. 40-50 percent of the human body consists of more than 600 muscles. The main functions of skeletal muscles are movement, posture support and breathing. Muscle contractions are initiated by a complex series of processes. Electrical impulses originate in the central nervous system and stimulate the onset of voluntary muscle contraction. Proteins in the muscle fiber interact with each other, shortening the muscle. The shortening of the muscle leads to contraction pressure. This process continues until the electrical impulses decrease or the stimulation stops. Without sufficient energy, muscle contraction is no longer possible, which can lead to muscle slackening. Strength training increases performance and delays fatigue during exercise.

Terminology/definition of terms

Overuse – Excessive muscle use with insufficient rest periods that can lead to reduced performance and/or injury.

Gradually Increasing Stress – Gradually increasing resistance/weight to achieve a consistent workout result with improved skills and resilience.

Expression – the training mainly affects the trained muscle groups and the associated movements.

Resistance training – perform an exercise with resistance, such as gravity, water, dumbbells, equipment, straps or body weight, to improve physical fitness.

Repetitions – how often an exercise is performed without pausing.

Rounds – a certain number of repetitions.

Physical endurance – the ability of muscles to contract (repeatedly or continuously) over a period of time.

Physical strength – the maximum force that can be generated by a muscle or muscle group.

Muscle Tension – Muscle fibers are activated to overcome/resist a certain resistance/weight. The strength is further increased with additional tension, up to the limit of physical strength.

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