Freediving is right on the edge of blowing up, and it is hard not to notice the unfaltering parallel to surfing. Big wave chargers such as Ian Walsh and Maya Gabeira are learning more about breathing techniques to better their chances of survival. Because let’s face it, suffocation is scary – and it’s not just suffocation that freedivers face. At the depths they are reaching, the body reacts to the pressures around it. It goes without saying that freedivers and surfers both have a profound connection and understanding of the ocean.
When asked why freediving instead of scuba diving, Kirk Krack, founder of Performance Freediving explained, “It’s the freedom. Similar to the reasons most surfers prefer paddling to tow-ins. Scuba diving is like being in a SUV with air conditioning and music,” he said. “Freediving is like grabbing your backpack and hiking through the forest. You have to be adaptive and understand your surroundings.” Like surfers, they seem to thrive in uncomfortable situations.