Freedivers use lead weights to reach the required depth as quickly as possible.
These weights can be strung on a Beuchat Marseillaise belt or a belt with a quick release buckle, so that they can be released quickly and easily if necessary.
You can choose a nylon or neoprene belt. The nylon belt is stronger but has the disadvantage that the weights can slip off the belt, altering the weight distribution around the waist.
The neoprene belt is more fragile, but the weights remain firmly in place on the belt, maintaining an optimal weight distribution around the waist.
The harness is another solution, which better protects the back and especially the lumbar region and prevents pain in the hips and kidneys. It allows you to better distribute the weight on the upper part of your body, especially your shoulders and back. It is available as a neoprene weight waistcoat, and additional weights can be added to the belt.
The advantage of the harness is that it has a quick release system that can be operated with one hand. The harness is released by opening a single buckle.
The weight of the ballast is calculated according to the weight of the freediver, the thickness of the wetsuit, the fishing depth and the salinity of the water. The thinner the wetsuit and the shallower the water, the more ballast is added.
On the contrary, freediving at depth is done with less weight. The deeper you go, the more your wetsuit compresses and you lose buoyancy.
For your safety, start underweight and adjust your weighting during the practice to obtain a neutral buoyancy.
A tip to know if you are neutrally buoyant: stand upright and breathe regularly into your snorkel. You are neutrally buoyant if the surface of the water reaches the middle of your mask.