Spearfishing: More Than Just a Sport, It’s Our Way of Life
What is spearfishing? Is it a sport? A way of life? A means of survival? A passion?
For us at Spearfishing Today, the answer is crystal clear: spearfishing is all of the above.
The roots of spearfishing go back thousands of years. Since human beings began to hunt for their own food, spearfishing has been an important means of survival.
Over time, what was once done out of necessity is now mostly done for sport or pleasure.
However, spearfishing was, is, and should be much more than that.
At Spearfishing Today, we don’t hunt just for sport. We hunt to put food on the table.
For us, the thrill of the sport is in large part the fact that, by taking what we catch from sea to table, we are feeding ourselves in a sustainable manner.
No supermarkets. No middle men. No preservatives added.
At the same time, we share with our guests a lesson of a lifetime: how to be more with less.
The History of Spearfishing
Spearfishing began thousands of years ago, long before the advent of underwater fishing equipment such as snorkels, masks, wetsuits, or spearguns.
Born out of necessity by ancient cultures looking for means of survival, what we know as spearfishing today took root in the most elementary needs and conditions.
Thanks to those who came before us, those who learned the art of catching their own meals through the use of hand-crafted spears, humanity could grow and thrive with fish as one of our main forms of sustenance.
In fact, cave paintings found in the Cosquer cave of southern France indicate that spearfishing from the shore goes back at least 16,000 years.
It wasn’t until the 1920’s, however, that spearfishing started to become more popular as a recreational sport.
With the advent of masks and snorkel gear around the middle of the 20th century, freediving began to be more common thus giving birth to the modern form of apnea spearfishing practiced throughout Mexico today.
Where can I go spearfishing?
Technically speaking, wherever you can find a body of water and edible fish.
There are many great destinations throughout the world to practice spearfishing, including lakes, streams, and oceans.
In addition to the abundance and size of fish, visibility and current are two factors to take into consideration when considering where to go hunting.
Likewise, always take follow local regulations and remember that you should never hunt in protected areas or vulnerable species.
In the Mexican Caribbean, conditions are ideal for some of the best spearfishing in the world.
With the world’s second longest barrier reef — the Mesoamerican Reef — running all the way north off the coast of Cancun down south to Honduras, fishing conditions are ideal in this region of the world.
Add to that an overall excellent level of visibility and mostly calm currents, and you’ll find some of the premiere spearfishing spots in the entire world along Mexico’s Caribbean Coast.
What type of spearfishing gear do I need?
Depending on where, when, and with whom you go spearfishing, you may need to bring along your own gear.
If you’re going to hunt in the cooler waters of the Pacific, for instance, you’ll be wise to always use a wetsuit. In the Mexican Caribbean, where we operate out of at destinations such as Cozumel, Cancun or Playa del Carmen, a spearfishing wetsuit is a bonus but not a necessity as water temperatures remain around 28 ºC year-round.
In addition to fins and typical snorkel gear, you’ll also need to decide if you are going to use a speargun or a polespear. Spearguns are more common for beginners as using a polespear to hunt is much more challenging.
Please note that the use of scuba gear for fishing is strictly prohibited in Mexico.
For more information, see our detailed list of gear and equipment.
Who can go spearfishing?
Spearfishing is challenging for the mind, body, and spirit. It’s also an extreme sport that comes with the necessary precautions.
It’s a sport that requires patience, stamina, feeling comfortable in the water, and being a good swimmer.
It’s a sport and a way of life for almost all ages.
At Spearfishing Today, we do take out as kids and teenagers (only under parental supervision) not as much to hunt but to become comfortable in the water and in practicing apnea.
And, of course, as long as you’re in good physical condition, you’re never too old to learn to spearfish. Unless, of course, you believe the old adage that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.
Like any new sport or physical activity, learning to freedive and mastering the apnea breathing techniques takes time and practice.
For those wanting to learn at a quicker pace, we also offer a PADI freediver certification course.
Be sure to check out our FAQs for more answers to our most frequently asked questions.
Spearfishing as a Way of Life
As we mentioned above, spearfishing is much more than just a sport to us.
We practice it with passion and truly believe in the life lessons we learn from challenging our bodies and being able to feed ourselves.
In consequence, our slogan From Sea to Table is much more than just a nice-sounding phrase.
Rather, it’s our guiding principle and what we try to share with our guests who visit us from all over the world to go spearfishing in the Caribbean.
Lately, we’ve been learning more about the Slow Fish Movement, and trying to steer our organizational ship toward the practices and ethics that will make us part of this back to the roots and sustainable vision of food and where it comes from.
Our spearfishing operations are based out of the Mexican Caribbean.
We began our charters almost ten years ago on the island of Cozumel.
Today, Spearfishing Today operates out of Cozumel, Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Tulum, Holbox, and Isla Mujeres.
Each destination has its own charm and its own challenges. All are graced with the tropical beauty and blue hues of the Caribbean Sea.
No matter where in the Mexican Caribbean you are located, we can arrange for pick-ups and even excursions from almost any destination up and down the Riviera Maya coastline.
With some of the best fishing in the world here, we’re happy and privileged to call this heavenly haven our home.