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Old 03-18-2018, 07:18 AM   #1
hydroid
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How young to start spearfishing

My grand daughter is 13yrs old and very comfortable in the water, and I would like to get her started spearfishing. How young is too young and need a recommendation on gun/pole spear? I've spent most of the last 3 years in the Marshall Islands and now that I'm home, she does not let me out of sight, ha ha.
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Old 03-18-2018, 09:59 AM   #2
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

She's old enough for a speargun with dad close by. Started my son at 8. I loaded the gun for him. Just look at all the young kids that go hunting with dads and grandpa. For example: Michigan deer opener is Nov. 15th every year and schools are closed that day.
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Old 03-18-2018, 12:14 PM   #3
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

13 is plenty old enough
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Old 03-18-2018, 01:18 PM   #4
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

I grew up as a fish from age 4. By 10 we moved to Panama City. FL. and were full blown snorkelers and scallop pickers extraordinaire. At 11 I was hunting on the jetties with a small JBL--legal back then. At 13 (back at Randolph AFB Texas) my brother and I got Healthways guns (JBL knockoff) for Christmas--God Bless Santa Claus. I still use those guns--albeit reworked. Just as with any pointy-shooty-thingy safety and awareness is paramount to teaching. Snorkel and free diving abilities and the requisite safety awareness are the foundation. I was placed on top side watch restriction for a day for coming back on board with a loaded gun and never, ever did it again. I am in the process of training my two Boyz 8.5 & 9.5 yo. They've been with us almost 3 years and I've taught them range safety on archery, BB gun and slingshot. When they focus they're scary good. Dad (83) and I have taught them swimming and starting on snorkel/diving. Focus and the reward is key to motivation. JBL D-5 mini would be a good starter gun for under $100. Good luck and God Bless!
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Old 03-18-2018, 09:11 PM   #5
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

freedive or scuba? I thought my 13 yr old handles this emergency situation pretty well - probably better than me?

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Old 03-19-2018, 08:51 PM   #6
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

Just Freediving, more like snorkeling. My family and I have not put on tanks in 15 yrs.
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Old 03-19-2018, 09:30 PM   #7
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

I think you should get her in a freedive class before you put a gun in her hands.. but to each their own
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Old 03-19-2018, 10:01 PM   #8
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

My sons could freedive spearfish pretty well by 11 yrs old. I think the kids need to watch spearfishing for a while before you let then try shooting fish.
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Old 03-20-2018, 02:04 PM   #9
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

I totally agree with the observation part but disagree with taking a course until she's going to free dive over 25 feet.
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Old 03-20-2018, 03:32 PM   #10
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

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Originally Posted by agbiv View Post
I totally agree with the observation part but disagree with taking a course until she's going to free dive over 25 feet.
TOTALLY agree. And more, IMHO freediving classes are one of the main causes of newbies spearfishing at 70+ feet in no time (two weeks or less) and having accidents. Even if safety is one of the main focus in freediveing classes, must of the people I know join the classes to dive deeper without going through all the learning curve. Spearfishing is a totally different ball game than freediving, and there's a lot of factors involved that there are not while freediving.

This being said, my youngest son started at the age of 8 and he got his first wahoo by the age of 12. Now, at 15, he shoots more fish than me for sure!
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Old 03-20-2018, 07:55 PM   #11
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

Learnt swimming by 5, and have been spearfishing since 8,
Or over 23 years.... best thing that happened in my life (and shaped how I perceive life and many other things...)

My daughter is 5, she swims and is comfortable diving to 5-6ft in a swimming pool.... Iíll probably get her spearfishing by age 8-10


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Old 03-20-2018, 09:36 PM   #12
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

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TOTALLY agree. And more, IMHO freediving classes are one of the main causes of newbies spearfishing at 70+ feet in no time (two weeks or less) and having accidents.
Have you ever taken a freediving class Marco?
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Old 03-22-2018, 06:17 PM   #13
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

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Have you ever taken a freediving class Marco?
I did. But was already an experienced spearo. All the other spearfishermen taking the class with me just wanted to dive deeper.

Freediving and spearfishing are very different; while in freediving you want to hit a maximum while descending by a rope and having one or more people watching you, in spearfishing there are too many factors that can go wrong.
I always tell my kids to watch each other, but I also tell them that they can't
totally rely on a buddy, since there are too many factors as current, murky water, a nice fish passing close by, etc. that can distract your buddy attention.

The safety part of a freediving class is nice, also knowing what's going on with your body, but I think that diving too deep too fast is a no-no.
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Old 03-31-2018, 04:44 AM   #14
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Re: How young to start spearfishing

Good subject. I learned how to swim when I was 4-5 years old and did not get into real diving until I was 17-18 years old. Before that I just swam in pools,lakes,etc which is a joke compared to the ocean. With time I was able to comfortably hunt in 60-80 feet of water, and freedive to 90-110 feet, and even do long beachdives where I did not touch the ocean floor for over 10 hours. All of this took me years, and I am glad I took my time instead of rushing myself like so many others do in this sport. I agree that a responsible diver should take their time to become a good diver, since real life experience earned though years of diving is worth far more than taking a free diving class.
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