Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

When practiced by individuals who received proper training and follow safety protocols, freediving is among the safest water sports there is.

Accidents do happen on a regular basis though, when divers are either untrained, or do no have another (trained) diver with them acting as a safety, which is the #1 rule of freediving. Many spear fishers for instance loose their life every year in the Philippines.

It is therefore essential to receive proper education and follow safety protocols.

You will have to fill in a medical form prior to any course with us, which will ensure that you have no preexisting condition that would be contrary to the practice of freediving (such as a prior pulmonary or ear injury for instance). 

We also ask you not to drink alcohol and avoid using the AC or eating dairy for at least 3 days before the course. Any of these are likely to cause sinus congestion which will make it much more difficult to equalize your ears as you go down the water.

As a general rule, Apnea Total is built around the student experience, while AIDA (which is considered as the reference worldwide) and SSI aim at covering all aspects of the sport. We would suggest you browse through their website and get a taste for yourself.

AIDA and SSI impose requirements to progress to the next level of training (including the ability to equalize head first), while Apnea Total lets its students evolve more freely until reaching higher levels of training. For that reason, you will be able to automatically crossover from AIDA/SSI to Apnea Total, but not the other way around. 

At a professional level, Apnea Total and AIDA instructors can work as freelancers, while SSI instructors need to be working with an established SSI center. 

Apart from sharing the passion for freediving and raising awareness about environmental concerns among the visitors of the island, the primary reason why Conservation Freedivers Bohol was created is to logistically and financially support the Apnea Green Organization, a non-profit environmental organization that acts to protect marine resources and benefit local communities in the Philippines.

Once the center covers its monthly expenses (rent, instructors’ salary and so on), all profit will be donated to Apnea Green.

We accept bank wires on our Filipino account, cash (pesos, euros or us dollars), as well as Bitcoin. If need be we have a PayPal account as well, through which an additional 4% would have to be charged to cover the PayPal transaction fees.       

We ask for a non-refundable deposit of 50% of the price of your course. In the case of a coaching session, the amount is to be paid in full. 

If you let us know a bit in advance, you can reschedule your course.

In any exceptional event (accident, passing of a relative and so on) please reach us and we’ll find a way.


The easiest way to come here is to fly to Bohol–Panglao International Airport (TAG), from which you will be 20min away from our center. Alternatively, you can fly to Mactan-Cebu International Airport (CEB), then take a 1h transportation to the pier, take a boat to Tagbilaran (which is a bridge away from the Island of Panglao), and finally a 30min transportation to our center.

The school is located inside the premises of Almira Diving Resort, on the north shore of the island, at 10 minutes drive from the airport and 20 minutes drive from the seaport in Tagbilaran. 
If you are alone or with one other person, you can go there with a tricycle, the resort is well known from the drivers, and it should cost around 300 php from the International airport or 400 php from the seaport.
For a taxi, it should cost you around 500 php from the airport and 700 php from the seaport. 

Please find the place here on Google maps

If you know how to drive a scooter, actually quite a few things. You have cinemas, restaurants and bars within 20min of our center. You can also take a few days off and explore the island of Bohol, famous for its Chocolate Hills, water falls, conservation parks and great landscape to explore. 

A swimsuit and a towel will do. If you have corals harm free sunscreen, bring it too… If not, no worries. We take care of the rest. 

The mammalian dive reflex (MDR) is a reflex hard wired into our genetic makeup and is brought on by immersion in water (particularly the face) and holding your breath.

It is seen in all kinds of mammals and is very strong in children. In the middle part of the twentieth century, when people started setting freediving records for the first time, the mammalian dive reflex in humans had not been recognized and it was believed that a dive to 30m would crush the lungs. Experiments on freedivers, particularly with Jacques Mayol and Bob Croft, demonstrated the extraordinary effects of the mammalian dive reflex and research is still being performed today to further investigate the incredible adaptations of the human body to breath holding.

The main characteristics of the mammalian dive reflex are bradycardia, peripheral vasoconstriction, blood shift, and the spleen effect.

If you are a beginner, each course and each federation (AIDA / SSI / Apnea Total) has its own specific limitations in order to ensure gradual progress. 

If you are already certified and want to do  a coaching session with us, it will all depend on three factors. A a general rule, you will not go deeper than you can :

  • comfortably equalize your ears
  • feel comfortable physically
  • feel comfortable mentally

While a linguist might disagree, yes you can! At a certain depth (starting at around 20m), the air in your lungs will be compressed enough for your body to be negatively buoyant. At that point will you experience what is commonly know as the “freefall”, the most enjoyable part of the dive…