Well ladies and gentlemen of the underwater world, it’s official; November 2019 Deep Week was the largest non-competitive freediving event in the history of the universe and it was held in the sleepy fishing town of Amed in East Bali.
For those of you that don’t know Deep Week, it’s a congregation of freediving students, instructors and celebrities that all converge on one location a few times a year to hang out, train, dive, learn from and get deep with each other!
Image: Francisco Mesina (@francisco_mesina_films)
Headed by Australian freediving champion Adam Stern, Deep Week has become increasingly popular and this week’s was the largest Deep Week yet. With 111 students, 67 instructors and four freediving celebrities, it really was a smorgasbord of freediving fun, logistically achieved through the amazing efforts of the Apneista and Blue Earth Village crews!
In what was probably the smoothest Deep Week yet there were no incidents and the safety crew had an easy week spending most of their time sunbaking on the paddleboards whilst debating quantum physics and reciting Machiavelli. The conditions were virtually perfect inside Jemeluk bay – as usual – and divers were well protected from the spring tides and strong winds we experienced during the week. Visibility was between 20 and 30m with the average water temperature sitting around 30C. November is always a great time to dive in Amed as the water has warmed up again after winter but the rain hasn’t spoilt the visibility yet!
Joining Adam was New Zealand freediving superstar and 102m Dynamic No-Fins world record holder, William Trubridge. William held workshops on No-Fins technique, maximising MDR and lung volume and equalisation it was fantastic to learn from him and have him visit Amed. Hopefully we’ll see him again soon!
Also visiting were Ukrainian world record holder Natalia Zharkova who held workshops in bi-fins technique, training programs, diet and equalisation, and Molchanovs pro instructor Vitomir Maricic who helped people solve their problems throughout the week as well. A big thanks to all of our visiting celebrities for giving their time to help everyone out.
There were plenty of highlights throughout the week but probably none more impressive than the lucky students that were visited by first a mola mola and then a pod of dolphins on the boat dive. Equally impressive was Adam Stern’s fin rescue in Jemeluk Bay (third video in the Instagram post below). When you lose a fin in 45m of water, who ya’ gonna call?
As usual, the wreck diving was a big hit with the students and in their free time students took advantage of the amazing wreck diving that East Bali has to offer, with past visitors to Amed particularly keen to take a look at Amed’s fourth and newest wreck!
The lap pool and the static pool are both now open in Blue Earth Village so Deepweekers took full advantage of the great facilities to train and test themselves in the pool disciplines.
Image: Harry Webber
When you combine all of this diving with the hands-on training and problem solving on offer during deep week as well as yoga, crossfit and meditation in the mornings and evenings it’s no wonder Deep Week is becoming increasingly more popular as word continues to get out about this wonderful festival.
The next Deep Week begins this Saturday in Amed and there are a handful of last-minute places available so if you’re interested get in touch with Adam Stern ASAP. There’s also another Deep Week in Amed in April next year which is filling up quickly too so get in touch with Adam if you’re interested.
Image: Harry Webber
So with all that said and done all that’s left now is to rock the Deep Week closing party tonight but unfortunately for you guys there’s no cameras allowed because as any Deep Weeker knows, what happens at the Deep Week party, stays at the Deep Week party!
See you at the next one!
Written by Jereme Lane
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Nowadays, visualisation and mindfulness meditation are not uncommon terms. Even kids have heard of meditation and they know to sit and close eyes with index finger and thumb pressed together. They are both important tools and highly effective if practiced with discipline. Here at Apneista in Amed, Bali, our yoga teacher training program includes learning about methods to discipline our minds through both meditation and visualisation.
Though they two are not synonyms, visualisation and mindfulness meditation are both effective mind training. There are hundreds of different meditation styles and visualisation is just one of them along with affirmations, mantras and chanting.
I used to teach yoga to a group of artists and every time we sat down to meditate, at least one or two students would open up to me after class, rather embarrassed, saying “every time I sit down, I try to clear my mind but all these great ideas would just pop up in my head and I feel such a strong urge to write them all down…”
And that is precisely what can happen if we get confused in various methods of meditation. A tsunami wave of great and not so great ideas, thoughts, emotions rushing into our mind all at the same time. Visualization is an extension of imagination. If we do not cultivate an ability or discipline to steer and clear those waves of thoughts, even the most effective visualization can be just a cover up for another thought and it would only create agitation, anxiety and more destructive, unproductive thoughts that would hinder your performance (if it is being used for freediving) or your well-being.
The reason great ideas just seem to pop up one after another when we sit down to meditate is because we are constant talking machines to ourselves. We have about 50,000 thoughts a day. We rarely sit down, and just BE to watch our breath. And so when we do sit down to meditate, our minds see a little gap of silence and all of a sudden, we can see things very clearly, kind of like that Limitless
pill Bradley Cooper took. Well, not that dramatic but slowly, we have more gaps and pockets of real presence that allows our visualisation to become more precise and effective.
So set aside a time to create a discipline and a habit of sitting down with one pointed awareness. Notice your thought, place your mind on your breath. Best idea ever? Go back to the breath again. Then take a separate time for visualisation. Over time and practice, you will find your visualisation to be much more effective. In future, we will be looking at more visualisation and mindfulness meditation techniques suitable for yoga practitioners and freedivers.
We’re coming up to three years that we started the whole apneista project in Bali and the last year and a half has been really intense. . with lots of new stuff.. starting at what I reckon is probably one of the coolest…
Dark moon freediving…
That’s it, freediving at night..We have now started using the latest in glow in the dark rope ‘technology’. two glowing lines, the liquid darkness and clouds of bio-luminescence. It is an intensely beautiful and surreal experience, something difficult to describe or photograph, like the Northern lights…We have established a whole new protocol for this activity and it is open only to students who have shared some training with us (for obvious safety considerations.)
Freedive trips to nusa penida to Freedive with mantas,
We’re organising group trips to freedive with Mantas and other pelagics on the amazing reefs of Nusa penida, starting in May.
Freediving trips to Komodo and Raja Empat,
We are teaming up with Graham Abbot, one of the most respected specialist dive guides in this incredible area to offer something really special, freediving, yoga and Scuba trips to the Eastern Dive Jewels of Indonesia.
Fly and dive intensive.
From the 7th to the 12th and from the 15th to the 22nd of September Acroyoga and freediving intensives…with the amazing Bex Tyrer, Bali’s queen of acroyoga. This practice is a beautiful hybrid of acrobatics, yoga and Thai massage with one person ‘flying the other’ with another acting as a spotter.. It is the perfect complement to freediving in every way, we are pretty excited about this.
Another bit of news is that we are now offering SSI certification alongside our own Apneista training system. We will continue to do what we do best, adapting training to suit the individual and expanding our curriculum, but now for those interested in Global certification we now offer SSI training as well. For those who want to get signed off for SSI,we will be running one day SSI assessments during May.
New training space, yoga sala, cafe, equipment shop and more training lines.
On the beautiful bay of Jemeluk we are finally finished with the unending refurbishment and we now have what we firmly believe is the sweetest freediving shop in all of Asia. Chill out area, yoga sala, equipment shop and now a wonderful cafe, right on the beach. We have also set more lines at various depths and are now initiating some reef and beach clean ups, so that Bali’s best freediving spot becomes even better. Please roam the webpage for more details and pics.We are still processing a resource page with interesting research and training material relating to the breath,freediving and yoga, coming soon…
P.S. anyone with 5 minutes to spare and with great things to say about us here’s a link to tripadvisor, your help is sincerely appreciated.
Coming very soon… The best Master freediving course in Asia, with optional Yoga and meditation training.
In the last year we have been so taken up with the building of our new training space that we have resisted taking on Master students. We didn’t want to take on Master freediver students while there was still ongoing refurbishment and the possibility of people having a less than perfect Master freediving course.
But this summer we will start our new and improved Master Freediver internship programme. We intend to make this the best full immersion freedive training course available in Asia, (seeing as Dean’s Blue in the Bahamas is pretty hard to beat.)
Our training space with Cafe is built right on Bali’s best freedive training spot, meaning that freedivers can easily spend most of their waking hours training on lines or freediving the amazing reef which is all the way up and down the coast. When not on the reef or lines students can attend yoga classes in our sala, or receive training in Pranayama and other meditative techniques from Yoga. Full Master freediving course curriculum coming soon…