It'll be overlooked by many, given that freediving is an obscure sport with a niche following, but William Trubridge's recent plunge to 328 feet, on a single breath and without fins or any type of assistance, ought to be regarded as one of the more remarkable feats of human achievement in 2010.
I spoke with the New Zealander on Dec. 13, the day of his record dive at Dean's Blue Hole in the Bahamas, and posted a story on the GrindTv.com outdoors blog. It briefly made the Yahoo homepage and received more than 1 million views, so Trubridge at least gained some mainstream notoriety.
I'm mentioning this because Trubridge today released a video of his dive, and it's worth a look. Consider that he set the new unassisted freediving record -- breaking his own record -- and cracked the historic 100-meter mark using no weighted sleds or balloons. Then try to imagine yourself swimming to 300-plus feet, and back up again, using only your arms and legs for propulsion.
The dive lasted 4 minutes, 10 seconds, but I'm guessing it felt like an eternity. Enjoy the video:
-- Pete Thomas
Photo of William Trubridge after his dive is courtesy of Igor Liberti