Can I do intensive exercises after scuba diving?

A couple of weeks ago I was driving home after a day of diving when my brother called if I wanted to join in on some intensive workout session. My first response was an enthusiastic 'Yes', when suddenly an alarm bell went of in my head. I had read somewhere that scuba diving and intensive sports / workouts are a bad mix! I started Googling, but I couldn't find a definite answer. With some logic, muscles need loads of oxygen during sport, however after scuba diving they are filled up by nitrogen, I canceled the invitation. Just to be sure.. Still I wanted a real answer, so I contacted a specific scuba diving medical physician with the question:"Can I do intensive sporting, workouts / training after scuba diving?".

Well I'm glad I made the choice that day not to join in on the extensive sport session. Below is the translated answer and the original answer in Dutch from the physician to the question I asked.

Translated text:
"It's not recommend to do intensive sporting, workouts / training after scuba diving. The reason is that the muscles need sufficient oxygen because of the intensive labour. The direct result is that dissolved nitrogen is released quicker back in your blood circulation, which may still cause decompression illness. Intensive sporting, workouts / training before scuba diving is a different story. There are many studies published which conclude that this is a protective factor against decompression illness. You need to sport, workout / train at least 4 to 6 hours before scuba diving. Proper research is difficult however, because there exist such enormous personal differences. Nonetheless the advice not to sport, workout / train intensively after scuba diving holds strong."

Original text in Dutch:
"Intensief sporten na het duiken is af te raden. Door intensieve arbeid moeten de spieren inderdaad meer doorbloed worden om voldoende zuurstof te krijgen. Het directe effect is dan dat de opgeloste stikstof sneller in de circulatie komt. Dit kan inderdaad alsnog decompressieziekte uitlokken. Dit geldt ook voor douchen met heet water na het duiken. Intensief sporten voor het duiken is een ander verhaal. Er zijn onderzoeken gepubliceerd dat dit juist een beschermende factor was voor het krijgen van decompressieziekte. Dit moet je dan wel maximaal 4-6 uur voor het duiken doen. Goed onderzoek blijft echter moeilijk omdat er zulke grote persoonlijke verschillen bestaan. Wel blijft het advies geen intensieve sporten te gaan doen na het duiken sterk overeind."

The above text says it all. There is not much to add to the words of the physician. Watch out with the combination of intensive sports and scuba diving. Definitely not after scuba diving.

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