It’s that time again! The Olympic Games are upon us. We are filling our hearts and homes with national pride (despite our differing nationalities) and will soon be sitting at our kitchen tables with a schedule of the Games and a highlighter, sure to catch every promising athletic moment we have waited for the last four years.
Where does this leave you die-hard freedivers? There will be no static breath-holds or dynamic events at this year’s Olympic Games. You will not be able to tune in as your favorite freediver just barely earns a white card on a shaky surface protocol. Although the lack of freediving publicity is unfortunate, countries from all over the world are already putting together teams to compete at the biennial World Freediving Championships.
This year the championships will be held in Nice, France. The best of the best will come together and test their physical endurance and mental fortitude in three disciplines: static, dynamic and constant weight. The Americans are no exception and have already selected team members for the upcoming competition. This year the team looks even stronger than already stout past teams. The women’s team is still looking for one more athlete but the line-up is strong. Never before has the US sent a more well-rounded set of teams.
The success of the US seems set in stone but there are some challenges. In order for the Americans to really make a splash on the world stage they must train, train, train. With multiple national and two world records under their collective belts this is not an impossible task for the accomplished group, but the money is. The cost of getting the team to suitable locations to train for depth not to mention the cost of going to France for an extended period of time has presented some issues.
The only option for the star spangled athletes is sponsorship. They are currently seeking sponsorship in the form of airfare, living and training expenses. Let’s get creative though. Dollars and cents are great but maybe you have extra skymiles you are willing to donate. Maybe you have an “in” with a wetsuit manufacturer or someone who can donate custom designed t-shirts for the team. Spread the word so the US can bring home the gold on all fronts this summer, including freediving.
Cue the chant “U-S-A, U-S-A!” Oh the excitement! There will not be opportunities to tune in to ESPN to catch the record setting underwater swim or the ever humbling black out. However, you will be able to catch internet updates from the second-most exhilarating world athletic event!