“Yoga gave me the ability to control my mind and my fears. Sometimes to improve you need to step back and change your whole approach. People’s minds are a mess. Once you are in the water, and you hold your breath and you dive down, 10, 20, 30 meters, is the place where you find out that your mind is a mess, and you can not go deeper until you address them. Freediving turns a mirror in yourself, and when you think you are a relaxed person, maybe you have had a mask on, but that mask doesn’t work when you are underwater. The ocean is the most honest mirror we ever find and we can blame our lives, other people that our relationships are not working, we can blame our jobs, our parents, we can blame all kind of stuff, but when you are in the ocean breath-hold is just you, just you, and your subconscious fears come to the surface, and you have to deal with it, and the mask that you have created is off, and this is what I believe that people that come to freediving get so passionate about it, and is because in a space they see themselves for the first time, and that’s beautiful. It is touching. Freediving can be some moving thing with many tears that can be released on the buoy or under the water, and this is the beauty of realizing who you are. Freediving has huge potential because it attracts people who may not necessarily come to yoga class, but they get the same lesson, that they would get in a yoga class, and I think it transforms people so quickly. Freediving speeds up the discovery of the spiritual part of your life”
(Sara Cambell, The Freedive Cafe, the worlds freediving Podcast)
Sara Campbell was a World Champion in deep diving only after 9 months of training. Such an amazing achievement kept the attention of two researchers from the department of health Sciences at Mid Sweden University. They were wondering how this is possible?
Sara Campbell learned to free-dive at the age of 35, going from a beginner to a world champion very quickly. In other sports, it takes years of hard and dedicated training to reach even a national level. Like many other freedivers, Sara simply discovered that she could dive and the importance of deep relaxation. At the age she enters into the sport she was a well-experienced yoga instructor.
It seems that freediving can be easily learned by most people, given some training, and that some individuals, particularly with yoga or meditation experience, can reach astonishing results in a very short period. It could suggest that there was once a period in human evolution with selection for performance in and underwater and that our bodies still possess this ability, which can be revived with relatively little practice.
Schagatay, E., Johansson, O. (2014) Sara Campbell, World Champion in Deep Diving After 9 Months of Training – How Is This Possible?. Human Evolution, Vol. 29, no 1-3, p. 67-73