How does your experience as a scuba and tech instructor differ from your teaching as a freediving instructor?
As a scuba instructor, I knew there were certain skills the students and divers had to be able to perform comfortably. Once they achieved these it was all good and smooth diving from thereon. Naturally, most of the attention was going to the students having a harder time getting there.
In freediving, the only constant is the challenge, even for exceptionally good and experienced divers there is always the next step to take, and it is actually much more challenging coaching experienced diver than beginners.
Another difference is the fact that freediving focuses on the mental aspect first and technicalities come in far second. Of course, there is a lot of mental work that goes into being a good scuba instructor as well, but naturally, I was just not equipped back then, with the knowledge I have today on the subject.
I try to work with scuba instructors whenever I get the chance and share some ideas and tools from the freediving and breathwork worlds.
What is your favorite part of a dive, and why?
I love everything about this sport and every second of most of my dives. But my favorite part, by far, happens a few seconds into the descent once I become a little heavy and I get into a rhythm. I smile a little and start enjoying myself. This is also usually when I will know if it is going to be a good dive or not.
What is next for you in your diving career?
As for my plans for the future, in 2020 I was supposed to participate in the “World Freediving Series” which was taking place for the first time. Unfortunately, with everything that went down this year, it has been canceled. I really hope it will go through in 2021. I miss competing and I mostly miss traveling to new diving locations.
But even without traveling or competing, as a freediver, there is always another challenge to overcome. A new depth to get to and another issue to figure out about yourself. As a way of life, I will continue training and constantly trying to get better as a diver!
Follow Tom’s journey as a competitive freediver and trainer on his Instagram and contact him for more details to improve your own breath-hold.