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Holding Your Breath for 7 Minutes & Swimming 218 Meters Without Coming Up for Air

By September 16, 2013May 24th, 201915 Comments

Sure, you’ve seen him on shows like CSI and Gilmore Girls.  But today’s guest isn’t just another actor.  He can do some amazing things you can’t. Very specific things, albeit obscure. Like hold his breath for a full seven minutes. Or swim 218 meters underwater along the bottom of a pool without coming up for air — not a single breath.

Welcome to the mind-blowing world of Freediving, explained through the lens of one of the best in the sport — Australian National Record Holding Champion Tanc Sade.

One of the things I love about the podcast is the excuse to meet compelling people doing amazing things outside the mainstream — things I would ordinarily never come across in my daily life and yet find utterly compelling.  Freediving certainly fits the bill — a sport that couldn’t be more different from endurance athletics and yet in certain respects still shares a commonality.

Although the pursuit of excellence in any sport (as in life) require a strong mental game, Freediving requires unparallelled mental & emotional preparation. Learning to control the flexibility of not just your body or your thoughts but even your metabolic process through advanced meditation techniques.  Getting there is the fascinating part, and Tanc shows us how he does it, and why.

And that’s just the beginning. No spoilers. Just sit back. Listen. And let Tanc blow your mind.

In the interim — and to just paint the picture for you about what we are talking about here — have a look at Tanc’s 218-meter Australian national record-setting effort – an event called “Dynamic Apnea”:

NOTE: Tanc is a professional. You are not. So no matter how inspired you may be by this interview, please DO NOT attempt your own half-baked unsupervised freediving experiment at home —  any type of breath hold work unsupervised can cause death. If you are interested in learning more about the sport, research freediving courses and/or clubs in your locale and undertake proper instruction from someone skilled in this discipline. And if you have additional questions, reach out Tanc on Facebook and he would be happy to advise and guide you in the right direction.

PHOTO CREDITS: The trailer video thumbnail image of Tanc is by Mike Raabe. The green-tinted image is by Gregg Porteous. The 2nd image is by Daan Verhoeven. The remaining three images all by Mike Raabe.



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  • RIck Petersen says:

    Trust your training. Stay calm in the storm. That’s a lesson here. Thanks for posting Rich!

  • Ned says:

    freaking awsome podcast.. always was interested in this.. thanks Rich

  • Amy K. says:

    Wow. Unbelievable — this is exactly why I listen! What a fascinating guy!!!

  • @Threshold says:

    GDay fella’s. Great podcast. Great to hear another Aussie 🙂
    So good hearing Rich so excited about something he is so green on (I am absolutely the same). As an ex swimmer you have just thrown down the challenge & I’m going for 100m bi fins this season (starting next month down here). As Tanc said, 75m would usually pull me up as a kid (no fins though), so this might be some fun while I sort my shoulder out. Thanks guys

  • richroll66 says:

    Awesome – just make sure you get proper instruction and guidance – Tanc is very keen on making sure people don’t try this stuff without getting properly educated first!

  • Tanc says:

    Glad you folks enjoyed the podcast as much as I did. @@Threshold:disqus if you’d like me to steer you toward any freediving clubs in Australia let me know. 🙂 Tanc.

  • Litchi fruit says:

    Wow… Thanks both of you Rich and Tanc… I’m an ex-freediver. Still have my mono fin. I just may come back to this fascinating sport again. I miss it so much.

  • Karen says:

    And to think I struggle to breathe every 5 strokes. I’m amazed.

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