300 feet down: two bare feet and one breath of air   20 Apr 2010

AIDA NZ - Today at 11:50am in Dean's Blue Hole, Long Island, Bahamas New Zealander William Trubridge became the first man to pass the barrier of 300 feet (92 meters) freediving completely unassisted - a discipline called "constant weight no fins."

Swimming a form of adapted breaststroke he descended next to a vertical line, collecting a tag from the bottom plate as proof of depth, before returning to the surface with only his hands and feet for propulsion, in a total time of three minutes and forty five seconds.

Constant Weight No Fins is the purest measure of human aquatic potential, and athletically the most demanding of the freediving disciplines.

The dive took place during the Vertical Blue Suunto Dive-Off competition which runs from April 17-27 and sees the best freedivers in the world compete to extend the limits in this extreme sporting discipline. Dean's Blue Hole is the deepest blue hole in the world, at 203 meters (660 feet).

The greatest danger for Trubridge during the dive was the risk of running out of oxygen and blacking out underwater. Safety divers were on hand to assist him in the case of emergency, and a counterweight system could be deployed to bring him back to the surface if it happened very deep. His newly wed wife, Brittany, waited on the surface during the dive, counting out the seconds until he returned to breath again.

Trubridge uses a silicon coated wetsuit specifically designed by Orca, as well as swimming goggles that have been adapted with corrective lenses mounted on the inside so that they can be filled with water and enable vision underwater. The record depth was officially verified by a Suunto D4 depth gauge that Trubridge wore on his wrist, as well as underwater cameras that were viewed by judges from AIDA - the official organization for freediving record homologation.
Brittany and William Trubridge spend seven months of the year training in the Bahamas, and the rest of the time traveling through Europe teaching freediving and yoga courses. They were the hosts of the recent AIDA World Championships, where William won gold and bronze in the two disciplines with and without fins.

ends

 

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