2016 National Champions

Tim MoneyTim Money

Picture Credit: Daan Verhoeven (www.daanverhoeven.com)

Every year, the BFA selects the male and female National Champion based on competition results across all disciplines in the pool and open water. For UK divers this means training year-round and often having to travel abroad to reach the depths needed to excel on the world stage.

The 2016 champions are Tim Money and Liv Phillip.

Both athletes are cornerstones of British freediving; they are not only consistent high performing athletes on the pool circuit, but they rank at a high level in depth disciplines as well. The BFA would like to congratulate them both and wish them every success in 2017.

Liv Phillip commented: “It’s a real pleasure to receive the British Championship award again this year. It’s the 10th consecutive year I’ve won the British Championship, and every year has been very different as my freediving and my goals have developed. In the beginning I just wanted to hit the water with any excuse to do so, which is where my desire to do all the pool and depth disciplines came from. Now I’m a very experienced diver, things of course change, and I find new reasons to continue competition freediving. One thing that does not change is the freedom I feel from being in the water, and specifically in the sea. I made a competition personal best this year in constant weight with a dive to 75m, and the challenge in doing this was having very limited training time and resources, and very few training days doing depth in the sea. What I fall back on is a real joy of the water and the friends I get to share the challenges with along the way. I’d like to thank all the people who have supported me this year, and I’m looking forward to the 2017 Depth World Championship in Roatan in August.”

Tim Money commented: “I love this award and am really chuffed to get it. It’s really challenging to get points on all disciplines, and almost see it as the pentathlon of freediving, as it’s very hard to train and do well across the board. My head says I should be more specific and concentrate on one event to progress, however the excitement factor throws that out the window and I have a go at everything, which is great fun. My main challenge is with time between teaching, family and work – I just don’t get to do enough diving or events. I managed to get to two events this year, so only just got points in all disciplines, and hope to do more in the future. I would really like to thank my family who let me run away to these adventures, and my employer (www.saba.com), as they help me with time to get to the World Championships.”

For more information, please contact Louise Nelson, Press Officer, British Freediving Association at press@britishfreediving.org.

Saltfree Divers is For Sale

Saltfree For Sale

After 14 years, Sam Amps is looking for the right person, or people, to take over Saltfree and continue to make it available as one of the top training facilities for freedivers in the UK.Saltfree was founded in 2003 at what is now the National Diving and Activity Centre, near Chepstow. Saltfree is a busy freedive training facility, a hosting ground for record attempts and competitions and most importantly, a school that is suitable for running freedive courses at all levels, from complete beginners to instructors. Saltfree has been hosting training meets, records, competitions and running courses for almost 14 years. For the last few years, the Freedive Platform has also been made available for other clubs and instructors to rent and use for their own freediving activities.Sam would like to sell Saltfree as a going concern, an established business with a strong brand, all the equipment needed to run meets and courses and all the behind-the-scenes set up including the website and social media channels to keep it alive. She is aiming to sell in time for this season to start as normal in April/May. Anyone interested in taking on Saltfree should contact Sam on sam@saltfreedivers.com for full details

Individual AIDA Depth World Championships Roatan 2017 UK Team Selection

Applications for the UK Team – 2017 AIDA Depth World Championships in Roatan, are now open.

The competition will take place from 22nd August -3rd September and will include Free immersion, constant weight and constant weight no fins.Selection for the team will be based on the highest proven performances in the three disciplines. (AIDA world championship team selection will be by AIDA ranked points dated from 18 months prior to 28 February 2017. In case of candidates wishing to be considered who do not have AIDA ranked points a performance witnessed by an AIDA Judge or AIDA UK Instructor will stand at 80% of the resulting outcome.)

If you are interested in competing for the UK in Roatan please let us know by 15th February. Please send an email to competition@britishfreediving.org listing your highest AIDA ranked performances since September 2015 in Free immersion, constant weight and constant weight no fins with details of where this ranking was obtained.

If you do not have a ranked performance in any or all of these disciplines, please let us know your current best performances in training, and when you anticipate seeing those ratified officially.

If you anticipate achieving a higher ranked performance in any of the disciplines in the next few months, please also let us know that in your email.

If your geographical location makes it difficult for you to gain a ranked performance, please let us know and we will take this into consideration.

If you are interested in going to Roatan as Team Captain/Coach, please let us know you are interested by letting us know your experience in this area, and why you think you would be good for the job. Applications for the Team Captain/Coach position will be considered by the team once they have been selected, and appointed within one month of final team selection.

If you make the decision to apply for the 2017 team, you obviously need to be available to be in Roatan for the dates above. You also need to be sure you can afford your flights and expenses and the entry feesIn the meantime the BFA will be doing all it can to gather both sponsorship and logistical support for the 2017 team.

All competing athletes must be over 18 years old, UK citizens and members of the BFA at the time of the competition.

BFA Members Day at NDAC in Chepstow on Saturday 30 July 2016

BFA Members Day at NDAC in Chepstow on Saturday 30 July 2016

We’re holding a BFA Members Day at NDAC in Chepstow on Saturday 30 July 2016.

We’ve arranged a freedive safety demo (by Liv Philip), talk on underwater photography by Mark Harris (author of Glass and Water), BBQ, camping and yoga (with Rebecca Coales). And of course for qualified divers*, some time on the Saltfree platform and NDAC attractions.

We’ll cover the costs of diving for BFA members. Our BBQ will be at the Beeches Farm campsite where we’ve also set aside space for the freedive group. There’s a normal Saltfree meet the next day for those staying on.

Places are limited for this event so please sign up today by contacting Rebecca membership@britishfreediving.org stating whether you are diving only or diving + campsite. We’ll need a deposit from you if you’re camping

See you there!

*at least AIDA 2 star or equivalent

The 7th Great Northern competition and the UK BFA Pool championships has been announced for the 10th April, 2016

The 7th Great Northern competition and the UK BFA Pool championships has been announced for the 10th April, 2016

The competition has reduced to one day for this year, and will be two disciplines over two sessions.

Static (STA) will be held on the first session, and the second session will be a choice of Dynamic with fins (DYN) or Dynamic no fins (DNF). In the dynamic no fins sessions points will be multiplied by 1.3 to even out the fairness in the point score.

For example, a Freediver getting 130m DYN will be the same points as a Freediver getting 100m DNF (100 x 1.3 = 130m)

The competition winners are those athletes with the biggest point score over the two disciplines. AIDA rankings are given for all disciplines competed in. The AIDA rankings for DNF will NOT be multiplied by 1.3, this is purely to decide the competition winner.

Please visit the site www.freedivingcompetition.com to see more details and enter the competition.

Video from Apneists UK’s last competition: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=fu9GhxeU7sk

BFA AGM 5 December 2015


The 2015 AGM was conducted by Skype on Saturday 5 December and we had the biggest turn out to date! Year on year our membership grows as does the support you all show us so thank you.

2015 was an exciting one for British Freediving. It would be difficult and near impossible to mention everything so a summary of the highlights will have to do! The year started with the announcement of the BFA’s annual UK Freediving National Champions Liv Philip and Michael Board, both top athletes and wonderful ambassadors of our sport. We were treated to multi-national record holder Georgina Miller holding her breath live, for five whole minutes on the BBC1 the One Show, prime-time TV, coached by her partner Daan Verhoeven; the show also featured top British freediving athlete Ian Donaldson. Samphire Amps shared her imaginative insights and experiences as a freediver with Jarvis Cocker for a special edition of Wireless Nights at the Proms. Over the last twelve months we have seen 6 national records set by the following athletes: John Moorcroft (DNF 176m), Georgina Miller (STA 06:33), Alice Hickson (DNF 153m & 174m, STA 06:58) and Michael Board (FIM 97m). And I think it is fair to say that one of the biggest highlights has to be Alice Hickson coming home a World Champion Freediver with not only a gold medal for her massive dynamic no fins swim of 174m, but also a bronze for her equally impressive static breath hold, two seconds shy of seven minutes at Freediving World Championships in Serbia!

Freediving has continued to make appearances across the press, in print, online, on the Radio, on TV and even in the form of a hugely successful exhibition in the centre of London. And we are continuing to appear on Redbull Adventure’s website and Facebook page courtesy of top freediving videographer Daan Verhoeven (www.daanverhoeven.com).

Finally and last but not at all least, a massive thank is owed to our wonderful sponsors Divesangha (www.divesangha.com), Elios Sub (www.eliossub.com), Bounce (www.bouncefoods.com) and Saltfree (www.saltfree.biz) for their generous support of our British Freediving Team in 2015.

From all of us at the BFA, we wish you all wonderful and safe dives for 2016!

Minutes from the Meeting

Location: Skype

Present: Adam Drzazga, Andy Jardine, Bart Lubecki, Beci Ryan, Deborah Gaskell, Georgina Miller, James Cluskey, Jean- Fabrice Detard, Liv Philip, Matt le clerc, Rebecca Coales, Tim Money.

Apologies: David Tranfield & Martyn Jones

1) Thanks were given to Martyn Jones for his time on the committee as Treasurer. We are pleased to announce that Julian Jansen van Rensburg has stepped up to take on the role of Secretary.

2) Notification of Committee Members for 2015/16 were announced:Chairman: Adam Dzraga
Clubs Officer: George Miller
Competitions Officer: Bart Lubecki
E Media Officer: Tim Money
Membership Officer: Rebecca Coales
Press Officer: Rebecca Coales with support from Beci Ryan
Records & AIDA Liaison Officer: David Tranfield
Secretary: Julian Jansen van Rensburg
Sponsorship Officer: Jay Cluskey
Training & Safety Officer: Liv Philip
Treasurer: care taken by Liv Philip & Tim Money

3) Constitution & New Committee Applicants:

a. Working Groups & Volunteers: There have been a number of people expressing an interest in volunteering their time but are unable commit to a full role. It was decided that we should invite volunteers to help with projects that arise throughout the coming year. It was suggested we send an e-newsletter via Mail Chimp to invite volunteers from our database of contacts (a note could be included in the renewal for membership and a list kept on the BFA Drop Box folder).

a. References: It was suggested that any committee applications must be supported with a reference from someone within the freediving community. This proposal was voted in favour and it was agreed that a paragraph should be written into the constitution to reflect this.

b. Statement on role integrity: It was suggested that committee members should be sign a statement on role integrity and again this was voted for in favour. Georgina Miller volunteered to write this up.

4) Treasurer Role: As there were no applications for the role of Treasurer, Liv Phlip and Tim Money volunteered to stand in. Tim will contact Martyn Jones and find out what the state of accounts is.
It was suggested that the Treasurer give regular updates to the rest of committee on the state of accounts; an outline of what this might be is to be drawn up.

5) Membership Officer: See Membership Report
Also to note, Rebecca requested that the note that members get a log book on the website be removed and it was agreed by attendees to do so:

6) E-media Officer:
a. Sponsor logos: These are now clearly displayed on the BFA website on top right hand corner as well as at the bottom of the home page. The sponsor logos directly link to the sponsor’s website.
b. Membership E-card: We have now moved away from plastic cards completely and are using e-cards, which have the added benefit of being more eco-friendly. This year there was a photo competition for members and the winning image is to be featured on the 2016 e-card.
c. Website: Google thinks website has been hacked. This needs to be sorted. Redesign might help. At present we have three options for updating the BFA website:
i. Martyn Jones has a website ready but needs to pass on instructions;
ii. Bart Lubecki has made a suggestion for a completely new website; and
iii. We have received a third option from a potential volunteer

7) Sponsorship Officer: The sponsors for the 2015 teams were Divesangha, Elios Sub, Bounce Balls and Beet-it (Pool Team only). Divesangha, Elios and Bounce Balls have expressed an interest in continuing to sponsor the team in 2016. Beci has agreed to continue her dialogue with these sponsors. Jay has been in contact with other potential sponsors.

8) Press Officer: See Press Report

9) Competitions Officer: See Competitions Report
Bart will send a reminder of the BFA Competition Grants.

10) Safety Officer: As well as offering advice to the media, Liv has been liaising with other emerging freediving agencies that have sought her out for guidance and her expertise. New AIDA material on courses will be available shortly, which is up-to-date and user-friendly. There are a number of projects Liv would like to develop for 2016 and a request was made for a training bursary fund to encourage people to go on courses – this was agreed in principal although a detailed proposal would need to be submitted and then voted on by committee.
The Affiliate Clubs Safety Agreement needs updating. It was reiterated that all affiliate clubs must sign the Safety Agreement in order to be listed on the BFA website. Georgina and Liv to look at updating and sending it out to all clubs to resign.

11) Clubs Officer: See Clubs Report
It was proposed that non-AIDA freediving agencies be allowed to become an affiliate club and listed on the BFA website. After some discussion, it was agreed that as long as the other freediving agency club agreed to sign the (updated) Affiliate Clubs Safety Agreement, then they would be allowed to become an affiliate club and be listed.

12) Team Selection for 2016 World Championships: The BFA aim to send the maximum number of athletes possible to each World Championships. Team members are chosen based on AIDA Ranked performance from 18 months prior to cut off date (with a cut off date 3 months before entry deadline).
a. AIDA Individual Pool World Championships will be hosted by the Finnish Diver’s Federation in Turku, Finland.
i. Dates: 25 June to 4 July 2016
ii. BFA Deadline for applications: 15 March 2016
iii. Registration Deadline: 30/04/16
iv. Maximum number of athletes: 4 men & 4 women, Coach and Team Captain
v. Official website: http://aidafinland.org/

b. AIDA Team World Championships will be hosted by Freedive Club Greece in Kalamata, Greece.
i. Dates: 16 – 25 September 2016
ii. BFA Deadline for applications: 16 May 2016
iii. Registration Deadline: 31 May 2016
iv. Maximum number of athletes: 3 men + a reserve, 3 women + a reserve, Coach and Team Captain.
v. Official website: TBC
An announcement of both events and call for applicants is to be written up and published on the BFA website and Social Media.

13) Membership Fees 2016: It was agreed there would be no change to Membership Fee for 2016. However, it was proposed and unanimously and enthusiastically agreed, subject to checking the accounts for 2015, that £2 per individual membership fee be donated to AIDA International for their incredible work on research into safety.

14) Announcement of 2015 UK Champions: Congratulations to Liv Philip & Tim Money. Results are calculated according to AIDA ranked points from November 2014 – November 2015 (across all 6 competitive disciplines using the website Apnearanking.se). A press release is to be written by Rebecca Coales for the BFA website, Press Contacts and Social Media.

Lung Packing – Safety Update!


From your Training & Safety Officer Liv Philp training@britishfreediving.org:

The BFA are really happy to see so many new and renewed members in 2015. Part of our role is to improve safety in UK Freediving as well as to promote it as a sport. Thousands of pool and depth dives are completed safely and enjoyably each year, and we would like that to continue.

In order to be safe during your pool, depth and dry training as the recreational and competitive season kick off, please be aware that the practise of lung packing (dry or in water) should be avoided. Lung packing is a risky technique that involves inflating the lungs above their natural vital capacity. Packing may injure the lungs, and cause serious injury–even death.

At least three serious incidents have been caused by lung packing recently, one during dry training, and one pre-dive stretching during pool training. We now know that problems are not confined to deep water training and that lung packing can increase the dangers of pneumothorax and embolism.

The BFA & AIDA do not recommend packing; if you wish to pack, please do so moderately and safely. – Dr Per Westin AIDA International Medical Officer.

British Freediving needs you! We are looking for a Treasurer, Press, Secretary and Clubs Officer.


British free diving needs you! We are looking for a Treasurer, Press, Secretary and Clubs Officer..

The committee would like to say thank you to Beci Ryan, Martin jones and Georgina Miller for their time as press, treasurer and clubs officer (and joint secretary) over the last years. We are sad to see them leave and wish them all the best with their diving in the future. Your help will be missed!

It’s that time of year again. This year’s British Freediving Association Annual General Meeting (AGM) will take place on Saturday the 5th December at 6pm where we will all gather on line. You are all very welcome to come to the AGM, listen, take part and give your views. If you would like to attend, please send an email to secretary@britishfreediving.org, add We_are_the_BFA as a friend on skype and we will call you at the start of the meeting

The AGM is your chance to find out what the British Freediving Association has been up to over the past year and express your views on what it should be doing in the year ahead. Most importantly, it is your chance to stand for a Committee position and get involved!

We need to fill quite a few gaps in the BFA Committee this year and really hope you will use this chance to give something back to the sport you love. Without the BFA, we may not be able to compete at International level or organise recognised competitions, will struggle with teaching insurance and won’t get our records recognised properly. If the Committee positions are not filled, then there is a good chance the BFA won’t be able to continue – so please consider whether you might be able to give an hour or so a week to give something back. To continue, according to our Constitution, we must appoint at least a Chair, Membership Secretary, Training & Safety Officer and a Treasurer. There are lots of other roles to fill! At the moment we desperately need a press officer, clubs officer, and secretary,e- media and treasurer, there are others standing for the other roles but if you are interested do stand up to be counted! The Committee posts can all be managed wherever you live, as long as you have internet and email access a couple of times a week. Whilst it would be helpful, to us and to you, you do not need to attend the AGM to stand for a position.

The BFA Committee positions are:

Chair – Currently Adam Drzazga, who will stand again. The Chair manages the organisation of the Committee in terms of the AGM, leads discussions on new developments for the organisation, keeps a bit of an eye to make sure all the Committee members are fulfilling their post’s requirements and generally keeps email and other discussions under control. The Chair sometimes also ends up covering roles in the short-term when vacancies arise and acting as a point of contact for other Committee members when they are on leave.
Clubs – Currently Georgina Miller, who will step down. The Clubs Officer manages the recognition of BFA affiliated clubs, answers questions from club organisers and members, supports the clubs in developing their activities and advises on how to set up new clubs.
Competitions – Currently Bart Lubeki, who will stand again. The Competitions Officer supports anyone in the UK organising AIDA-ranked competitions, oversees the competition from the BFA’s point of view and may work with the E Media and Press Officer to help promote the competition. If organisers do not come forward, the Competitions Officer may be required to proactively seek out and encourage members to organise competitions.
E Media – Currently Tim Money, who will stand again .The E Media Officer runs the BFA website and e-communications. This is the face of British freediving!
Membership – Currently Rebecca Coales who will be standing again. The Membership Officer keeps track of who the current members are, processes membership applications, sends out membership e-cards and works with the Sponsorship Officer on building member benefits. Some IT knowledge is a help in this role.
Press Officer – Currently Beci Ryan, who will be stepping down. The Press Officer liaises with the media (mostly the UK dive press and dive websites) to publicise records, competitions and other Freediving stories and acts as a point of contact for media with queries about freediving. A new appointee will be provided with lists of contacts but it would be helpful if they had some previous PR or writing experience. The Press Officer needs to work closely with the E Media Officer and the Sponsorship Officer, to ensure all stories are covered on the website and that Sponsors get sufficient coverage in return for their support. They also manage the face book page- Phew!
Records and AIDA Liaison Officer – Currently David Tranfield, who will be standing again. This position is responsible for liaising with the AIDA International Board and AIDA Judge list, sending information on any AIDA International Level votes (about 10 a year) out to the Committee, monitoring responses and sending back our reply. This post also handles the management and recognition process for UK records, based on the UK record rules you can download from the BFA website, and liaises with the Press and E Media Officers to make sure the records are publicised. It would be helpful if the person appointed to this post were an AIDA Judge.
Secretary – currently care taken by Georgina Miller and beci Ryan. The Secretary manages communications with members, takes minutes at the AGM and provides secretarial support to the other Committee members as required.
Sponsorship – currently Jay Cluskey, who will be standing again. The Sponsorship Officer manages our relationships with sponsors and builds new sponsorship agreements. Sponsorship normally relates to the UK Team but it would be great to achieve more general sponsorship for freediving in the UK.
Training & Safety – currently Liv Philip, who will be standing again. This post oversees freedive training within the UK, working with the AIDA Education Committee to advise instructors on matters of training. It also has a wider remit, usually working with the Clubs Officer and sometimes with the Competitions Officers, to advise on matters of safety and is responsible for keeping the Open Water and Confined Water BFA safety advice sheets up to do date. The Training and Safety Officer needs to be a qualified freedive instructor.
Treasurer – currently Martyn Jones, who will step down.The Treasurer produces the annual BFA accounts for the AGM, keeps an eye on our finances, makes a final decision with the Chair on major expenditures, runs the BFA bank account and PayPal account. The treasurer ideally would have experience of keeping accounts, or accounting qualifications.

ALL the Committee members are actively involved in voting on AIDA International matters, discussing and putting forward the UK’s views on the development of the sport through AIDA, selection and support of the UK Team at AIDA International competitions and supporting the BFA in various ways in its purpose of “promoting freediving recreationally and competitively, in safe environments”.

Voting Process – In line with the BFA Constitution, anyone who wishes to stand (or re-stand) for a post, should send an email submission, stating the post or posts for which they would like to be considered along with a short CV or manifesto explaining why they think they would be suitable. This should be sent in by the 15th November to committee@britishfreediving.org. Where more than one person stands for a post, it will go to a majority vote of BFA members. Any vote will be sent to all BFA Members by the 21st November. You have two weeks to vote and the results will be announced at the AGM on the 5th December. Thanks again for your support and we look forward to seeing you at the AGM.

British Freediving committee

Get Snapping this Summer!

BFA Underwater Photo Competition

Picture Credit: Daan Verhoeven (www.daanverhoeven.com)

This summer we’re hosting an Underwater Photo Competition with the great prize of a workshop with renowned freediving photographer Daan Verhoeven. The winning image will also be used on next year’s BFA membership e-cards.

So many of you have told us that you’re keen photographers in your membership applications so now’s the time to get snapping!

To enter the competition we ask that you email us your best image by midnight on Saturday 15 August. The address is photo@britishfreediving.org. Your photo should capture the essence of freediving, as you see it.

We’ll then post your photos onto the BFA Facebook page for one week of voting, allowing everyone to give their view on the best shots.

Prize details: The day workshop with Daan can take place in Cornwall or Chepstow NDAC, but not covering any travel or accommodation expenses and must be taken by the end of 2015.

Just a few rules:

  • The competition is only open to current BFA members
  • One entry per person
  • Pictures should be taken on breath-hold

Good luck!