Spearfishing 101: Tips every beginner spearo should know

Thinking of taking up spearfishing? There are things you need to know before you go spearfishing, though. There are regulations to follow and spearfishing gear you’ll need to buy.

But let’s start with the basics. Here are nine tips for the beginner spearo.

1. You’ll Need a Wetsuit

First things first, you’ll need a wetsuit before you can head out spearfishing in the big blue. While you might think you’re rugged enough to go without one, trust us on this.

You shouldn’t choose just any wetsuit. Take some time to find the best one for spearfishing.

Your suit should fit you just right and provide all the protection you need.

2. You Might Need a License

Depending on the area where you plan to dive, you might need to get a license. Make sure you find this out for each area where you want to fish.

Whether your location requires a license or not, make sure you know how to swim and dive properly. SCUBA and diving lessons are very helpful in this regard.

You’ll need to be able to swim while you hunt, so the swimming and diving part of your adventure should be second nature.

3. Holding Your Breath is Key

If you aren’t very good at holding your breath for very long, you’ll need to work on that. Why? Because you’ll have to hold your breath the whole time you’re underwater.

Spearfishing doesn’t use traditional SCUBA breathing gear. While it does use some of the same gear, like a wetsuit, you won’t be bringing any air down with you.

If you’re not great at holding your breath but want to go spearfishing, there are exercises that can help you get better at it.

4. You Always Need a Companion

Diving alone is dangerous. It shouldn’t ever be done, just in case something unexpected happens.

You might have an unexpected blackout. This happens when your brain doesn’t have enough oxygen.

This can happen in even shallow water, so don’t think you’re good when you’re just playing around at smaller depths.

There’s always the chance that something will go wrong, so always keep a companion with you.

5. Success Isn’t Guaranteed

Just like with all other types of fishing, you won’t always be successful. So don’t get super frustrated if your trip doesn’t turn out the way you want it to.

Remember, this is a hunt. The fish don’t want to be your next dinner. So you’ll have to take the time to look for them.

This is one reason why holding your breath for longer periods is so important.

6. Your Timing Needs to be Right

When we say timing, we’re not talking about when you send that spear flying. We’re talking about when you go on your fish hunt.

You’ll need to pay attention to what’s in season when you want to go. There are lots of types of fish, but you can’t just shoot the first thing you see.

Some fish are endangered, as well, so make sure you’re aware of those too. Always plan ahead so you know what you can shoot at once you’re down there.

7. Always Take a Knife

You might think your spear gun is sufficient for your dive but think again. You should always take a dive knife with you.

This isn’t another thing to throw at the fish. Though it will help you kill the fish humanely once you’ve got it.

Dive knives are important for your safety, too. You never know what you’ll run into under the water. You or your friend may get caught in something, such as ropes or nets. In this case, a dive knife is literally a lifesaver.

8. Start in a Beginner Spot

Don’t let your excitement to spearfish get the better of you. You’ll need to start out in beginner locations.

Choose areas where the water is less than 20 feet deep. Dive shops will be able to direct you to the right places.

If possible, take a more experienced spearo with you. Since you’re not familiar with the situation, it’s always good to have someone knowledgeable around.

9. Avoid Dark Holes

This advice isn’t just for people in movies. Sticking your hand, foot, or spear in a dark hold under the water is never a good idea.

What’s hiding in those dark holes? While you never really know under you stick something in there, you may just run into an eel. You definitely don’t want to know what that feels like.

All in all, it’s best to avoid dark holes. Caves should be avoided as well. Stick to lighter areas to increase your chance of diving and fishing safely.

Use These Tips for Successful Spearfishing

There are plenty of types of fishing that can be exciting, but spearfishing may be toward the top of the list. Not only do you get to see and hopefully catch amazing fish, but you also get to dive while you’re doing it. 

Safety and knowledge of the sport are crucial, so make sure you take both with you when you go. And don’t forget to keep these tips in mind! If you do, you might just find the success you’re looking for.

Wondering if you need a spearfishing license where you plan to dive? Click here to find out.