Free Diving Movie Free Fall

Free Diving Movie Free Fall

I have a seriously unhealthy love affair with the sport of free-diving. Wait, stop, how many of you even know that free-diving is even a sport. Yeah, let’s cover that particular base first. Free diving is:

“the extreme sport of competitive apnea in which competitors attempt to attain great depths, times, or distances on a single breath.”


There are different types of free diving, but basically the concept is simple enough… divers dive without the aid of oxygen as deep as they can. Its basically the original extreme sport. Its crazy. Literally.

I first began casually following the sport when I accidentally ran across the movie, The Big Blue written by the incomparable Luc Besson – (You know him, I promise. La Femme Nikita, The Professional, Taken, From Paris With Love, The Transporter were all written by Besson.) And after discovering it I couldn’t stop watching it, over and over again. I wore out a VHS tape I watched it so much. And then I spent a hundred bucks to get another one. (Yeah, VHS tapes used to be extraordinarily expensive back in the day in order to prop up the video rental businesses around the country.)   

But at the end of the day, these guys are just so extraordinarily crazy that it defies words. Let these numbers rattle around in your head a moment.  Herbert Nitsch, World Record Holder Freediver, has descended to the depths of 214 – wait for it – meters. Our friend Herbert? He plummeted down 702 feet without the add of oxygen. His swim was over 4 minutes long.  When he reached the top he was asked what he thought about on the way down, he said, “I think about whether I’ll come back up again.” When he was asked what he thought about on the way up what did he say? “I think mainly about the safety divers and whether or not I’ll have to use them or not.”  And William Trubridge, the current no fins world record holder (101 meters) says that he does a lot of mind training so that he can access the subconscious portion of his brain and turn off the voices in his head that constantly try and tell him he is going to die attempting these feats.

Come on. That’s craziness. If you are attempting to do something that your natural, and healthy, portions of your brain are constantly trying to tell you that its going to kill you… you probably shouldn’t be doing it!