Thursday, November 16, 2006

Important International Freediving Challenge Set

USA Freediving to Challenge Japan Freediving in Competition November 16.

The United States Apnea Association, USAA, has been asked by Asahi Television to field a team of US Freediving athletes to compete head to head with athletes from Japan in Tokyo, Japan to be aired by the network on November 16. Four male and one female athlete will compete in the discipline of Dynamic No Fins, DNF.

DNF is a challenge to swim as far as the athlete can on a single breath for distance in a pool without the aid of fins. The athletes use breaststroke while staying submerged throughout their performance. At the conclusion of their performance the athlete must surface and compete a surface protocol to show they are in control of their performance. The surface protocol must be completed in the first fifteen seconds after the athlete surfaces. The athlete is required to remove their facial equipment, signal okay and say, “I am okay.” within those fifteen seconds. AIDA Judges will be present to validate all performances.

US athletes will represent their country and US Freediving while competing head to head with their Japanese counterparts. Glen Garrett (Wy), Kevin Busscher (Hi), Deron Verbeck (Hi), Brett LaMaster (Hi), and Julie “Jewels” Russell (Az) will be traveling with Linden Wolbert and Grant W. Graves. Grant and Linden will be support staff for the event. Glen is the current US National Record holder in this discipline, Julie is the current US Record holder in Constant Weight No Fins, and Brett is the former world record and current US National record holder in Constant Weight. Kevin is the former US National record holder in this discipline. Deron is the current US National record holder in Free Immersion.

The US group departed November 12 traveling to Tokyo. Training begins on November 13. The competition will be on November 16. Brett LaMaster remarked, “This is incredible to be able to travel to Japan to compete against our friends in Japan and represent the US and US Freediving. They have some really good athletes, this is going to be a good competition.”

The USAA is a nonprofit association founded on the democratic representation of freediving within the United States and internationally. Founded in 2003, the USAA consists of an active membership dedicated to furthering freediving in the United States and abroad. For more information about the USAA, the U.S. National Freediving Competition, and membership please visit

The International Association for the Development of Freediving, AIDA, is the international sanctioning body for freediving, individual and team competition, and freediving world record attempts.

For more information about AIDA please visit

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