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Jack Champion Underwent All Kinds Of Training In Preparation For Avatar: The Way Of Water

When it comes to the training and underwater scenes that the "Avatar: The Way of Water" cast had to go through during its production, we probably all know by now the record-breaking lengths that Kate Winslet and Sigourney Weaver went to. But it wasn't just the film's A-listers who were pushing themselves to their aquatic limits. 

Jack Champion, one of the film's only human characters, put himself through nearly half a decade of training — which eventually resulted in him being able to hold his breath for over five minutes.

"I did freediving training and scuba training for four years," Champion revealed in a December 15 interview with GQ. "They designed a real full face mask — because on Pandora the humans have to have a face mask to breathe in their oxygen from outside — that also worked as a scuba mask for us to be underwater for hours," Champion said, noting how he held his breath "for up to five minutes and 33 seconds at one point" while portraying Miles "Spider" Socorro. 

"It's all about being zen and just being really relaxed so you don't use up too much oxygen," he explained. "Sometimes when I was in the scuba mask I'd be 30 feet down underwater basically for hours at a time. We did breath ups to get rid of a lot of the carbon dioxide in our bloodstream, that could take up to five minutes, and then you have to do a really deep inhalation to get a higher oxygen percentage."

Throughout his training, Champion reportedly focused on not only making himself fit underwater but on land as well, which led to a drastic change in both his lifestyle and physique, according to "The Night Sitter" actor.

Jack Champion went from 'pudgy 13-year-old' to Pandora badass through cardio, weightlifting, and CrossFit

According to the 18-year-old "Way of Water" star, director James Cameron and his film team made sure to have him in tip-top shape for the "Avatar" follow-up — to the point where Jack Champion had to "maintain a shirtless physique" for approximately two years, he says. 

"[Cameron] sent me with a personal trainer — Josh Murillo, who I still work with today — who basically helped me look from a pudgy 13-year-old who didn't really know how to work out to someone who was more lean, ripped and good with movement," Champion told GQ. 

"For like two years I had to maintain a shirtless physique," he remembered. "We had to come up with a plan that would be attainable for two years. I did a lot of high-rep weight lifting, high-intensity interval training along with some boxing workouts and incline walks ... We started with basic movements. Before we did anything with heavy weights we just focused on technique. I had to basically learn how to properly do everything like squats and pull-ups. Then from there we slowly built up to weight lifting, cardio, longer cardio with short high-intensity intervals, and CrossFit." 

In addition to getting his body right, Champion was also tasked with boosting his physical abilities on-screen, which included learning advanced combat techniques and weapons training.

Jack Champion went through intense bow and arrow training, combat classes

As viewers will see throughout "Avatar: The Way of Water," Jack Champion was someone who took his role very seriously — with him spending years doing "bow, movement, and knife training" as if he was a real Na'vi warrior, the actor says. 

"I had to look like I grew up in the Pandora jungle keeping up with the Na'vi kids," Champion explained to GQ. "I had to learn all the bow, movement, and knife training," he said. 

Now, while doing all that training and working out would be hard enough as it is, Champion also reportedly made sure to eat like a warrior while shooting as well. He told GQ: "It was just like protein, protein, protein. One gram of protein per pound of body weight, which is what I still do to this day. Instead of focusing on meals that tasted good or were easy to consume, I would just focus my entire day around foods that are high in protein and count my macros."

Arriving in theaters on December 16, "Avatar: The Way of Water" is expected to be a huge hit with viewers and at the box office.