The Sanskrit Sutra quote, and incidentally, the name I gave to my small freedivers boat , “Ishvara Pranidhana” , can be absurdly simplified to, “I surrender all that I am to YOU”, whether that be that your god, the universe, or the elements you perceive to hold that immensity. I feel the sea, the water, the air….

In many forms of Yoga, Ishvara-Pranidhana is considered the “final” step, stage, practice, observance or niyama.[2] … Compare the meditation and mindfulness exercises of Ishvara-Pranidhana with Zen. “Connecting to the Divine Within,” or attentiveness and surrender to the Divine within in Ishvara-Pranidhana, parallels the concept of connecting to the inner Buddha-Nature in Zen. Continued…



I will be explaining the methodology of this yoga technique, called, Uddiyana Bandha, (Definition: Abdominal lock. The second of the three interior body “locks” used in asana and pranayama practice to control the flow of energy),and several others, with Pranayama breath control exercises as part of the advanced courses and Instructor courses.

I have 15yrs of experience in yoga and meditation awareness techniques and have seen the growth of Apnea as a sport before AIDA was even a formal concept, and certainly before the mainstream realised the importance of some of the aspects of the 8-limbs of yoga. The yoga exercises shown here and several more used in the context of freediving, have been adopted over the years, I’d hazard a guess to say, by almost ALL FREEDIVING SCHOOLS. You don’t have to be a wild yogi, Continued…



Maria Teresa Solomons, with years of freediving experience behind her will be running the 1st AIDA Instructor Course in Mexico. The Sea of Cortez where la Paz is situated, was acclaimed to be the Aquarium of the world by Jaques Cousteau, although as with many once were underwater paradises, it has become the seat of several NGO’s fighting to rescue and recover the natural beauty that it is. Espiritu Santo which is a Marine Protected Area is a natural reserve of astounding beauty still, with probably the greatest number of whale species in the world passing through, Whale Sharks are common to the waters here and it is the home of a huge sealiion colony on the northern most part of the island and many wild birds.

During and after the course there will be opportunities to visit some of the best dive locations around the islands to explore the wrecks, reefs and swim with the seals and whale sharks- if we have reported sightings over those days.





This exercise is called Uddiyana Bandha and has been used as a abdominal tonification and purging exercise in yoga for hundreds of years. Recently in the world of freediving the effects of diaphragmatic manipulation in this way has been proven to improve the elimination of air from the lungs and thus enables the ribcage to flex and compress more with the more extreme pressures at depth when the lungs have been reduced to Residual volume. Simultaneously with the reduced volume and the increased flexibility the trained freediver is able to “pull up” a little more air from the airways for deep equalisation.

This exercise must be practised carefully on an empty stomach, and regularly to reap the benefits. However a word of caution, just with this practice alone it DOES NOT mean that a freediver who has a good equalisation technique should jump irreverently to depths without a well prepared training program. The body needs time for physiological adaptation and the rush for depth must not be at the expense of safety.

Injuries that can result in irreversible damage are pulmonary barotrauma, i.e lung squeeze and trachea squeeze, that can leave scarring and result in limiting your depth freedives permanently. ALL UNNECESSARY AND COMPLETELY AVOIDABLE.

After all, Freediving is about fulfilment, exhileration, human potential and absolutely about humility!