Interview with Derek Marshall Dunning

Today’s episode is with Derek Marshall Dunning, president of the South African Underwater Fishing Federation, founder of DMD Fins, freediving instructor, national judge, master freediver and absolute spearfishing nut in Cape Town, South Africa! He along with South African Freediving Federation president Matt Stow (referenced in the episode a few times), run NAUI Freediving Africa and offer a wide variety of freediving and spearfishing courses. Find out about spearfishing in Cape Town, how to hunt local fish like Cape Bream (known as Hotties to the locals) Mussel Cracker and Red Roman, some great ways to cook Yellowtail and some remedies for difficult equalization. You can buy a pair of fins from him as well and you can do one of his courses and if you’re in Cape Town come and join the Blue Spearos Spearfishing Club, they have a telegram group that is full of people who love spearfishing!

We hope you enjoy this episode, let us know what you think in the comments!

Derek and a tuna

Important times:

  • 00:12 Welcome back to the Noob Spearo Podcast!
  • 06:55 Welcome Derek
  • 07:42 How long have you been involved in spearfishing in South Africa?
  • 08:38 Was freediving natural to you?
  • 10:36 Getting back into the water
  • 11:16 You have a sticky left ear, tell us about your equalizing history
  • 12:38 What do you do to fix this?
  • 13:45 Medicine or training your body to equalize better?
  • 14:22 Cortisone
  • 15:22 Snort salt water
  • 15:32 Tell me about your courses
  • 17:15 Weighting for new divers
  • 20:01 TV interview about spearfishing
  • 22:32 The value of teaching basic skills
  • 23:24 What common problems do you find in your students?
  • 24:47 “How do you hold your breath for longer?”
  • 25:26 Diving with better divers and spearfishing clubs
  • 26:48 Memorable fish in SA and how to hunt Mussel Cracker

Derek with a Cok and a Mussel Cracker

  • 28:59 Recipes
  • 29:56 Yellowtail recipes
  • 32:54 Merits of diving in the shallows
  • 34:43 Competitions
  • 35:36 Tell us about conditions in Cape Town
  • 37:51 We travel for big fish
  • 38:37 What is your approach to spearfishing?
  • 39:40 Cape Bream – The Hottentot, good eating?
  • 40:21 How do you find Cape Bream and Red Roman?
  • 41:28 What is an experience that scared you?

Derek and the Barracuda that bit him

Battle wounds from a barracuda

  • 43:39 We went through a series of Matt being a dick
  • 44:52 You meet a lot of interesting people and make good friends
  • 45:42 Veterans Vault: DMD FinsDMD Carbon Fins finished
  • 47:43 Plastic fins vs composites vs carbon
  • 51:17 I was a gearslut with a rolling tab at Rabitech
  • 52:10 The value of pool training and being in a club
  • 53:33 The value of doing a spearfishing course
  • 54:09 The history of spearfishing clubs in Cape Town
  • 55:45 Fuzzy takes new spearos out into the sea
  • 56:14 Enter the competitions
  • 58:15 What foot pockets have you settled on?
  • 59:14 Woman in spearfishing in SA, Mariette De Jager and Talya Davidoff
  • 01:01:32 Competitive freediving vs spearfishing – head space
  • 01:03:57 What makes a good spearo, my fish nemesis
  • 01:06:21 More funny stories
  • 01:08:52 What’s in your dive bag?
  • 01:10:21 What is Hydroglide?
  • 01:12:10 Where can people buy your gear?

Noob Spearo x DMD fins

  • 01:14:37 Spearo Q&A
    • Best piece of advice you’ve been given for spearfishing
    • If you could start over, what would you do differently?
    • What’s something you do differently in your spearfishing?
    • What does spearfishing mean to you?
  • 01:16:46 “If there’s water, we dive” – Thank you Derek!
  • 01:18:54 Sam Veasey’s voice message

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