1. Welcome to the DeeperBlue.com Forums, the largest online community dedicated to Freediving, Scuba Diving and Spearfishing. To gain full access to the DeeperBlue.com Forums you must register for a free account. As a registered member you will be able to:

    • Join over 38,500+ fellow diving enthusiasts from around the world on this forum
    • Participate in and browse from over 473,000+ posts.
    • Communicate privately with other divers from around the world.
    • Post your own photos or view from 5,500+ user submitted images.
    • All this and much more...

    You can gain access to all this absolutely free when you register for an account, so sign up today!

[News] Famed Magician In Freediving World Record Stunt

Discussion in 'Article & News Commentary' started by DeeperBlue.com, Apr 16, 2006.

  1. DeeperBlue.com

    DeeperBlue.com DeeperBlue.com Editorial

    New York, NY - World famous magician David Blaine has announced a live television special in association with the ABC network, in which he will attempt to break the world static apnea record of 8 minutes 58 seconds.

    Blaine's breath-hold feat wi...

    This is an news discussion thread for discussing the following DeeperBlue.net News item: Click here for original DeeperBlue.net News Item
  2. Walrus

    Walrus Oz freediver

    Great a magician !
    I'm guessing is a good reason for not having validation by any freediving body..... :t
  3. Sergiu

    Sergiu No gravity

    Any publicity is good publicity - so they say... in the end, why not, if it's bringing our sport to a larger audience. Just that i hope nobody (well, except for that blonde swimming trainer :chatup ) will ask me to pull some magic tricks while doing my statics at the local pool! rofl

  4. Haydn

    Haydn Well-Known Member

    Of Course, the real problem here is that David will obviously and magically break the world record. Kirk knows though, that this attempt cannot ever be fairly claimed, advertised or promoted as a "World Record attempt" unless Official governing bodies (Aida) are included to verify. Without Aida, this static is nothing more than a televised personal best attempt, a training static or a publicity stunt (which may be building in some form of cheating). Frankly, I would be surprised if Kirk allowed himself to be involved in anything like this unless he first makes it clear and without any shadow of doubt, that the stunt is either a true attempt or simply a magic trick or allusion. If this is a genuine record attempt it should be accepted as such, and validated. Aida should therefore force the issue and make themselves involved. Remember, the whole world will accept what they see and the hype that will afterwards claim David Blaine as an exceptional world record holder. Viewers will not understand that Davids static wont count, assuming he suceeds, particularly as Kirk and his team will add support to Davids claim to have broken the record. Personally, I dont believe it possible for David to fairly compete for this honour, and think it is unfair to Tom Sietas and Sam Still. Lets put them in the water at the same time and make a competition out of it and we will soon see this Houdini copycat disappear............Its a fantastic concept though, well done Kirk. David will well deserve his record and we should ensure it can count. I wonder if we will see him try a constant or no limits next, or even turn up as a regular competitor somewhere?
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2006
  5. Panos Lianos

    Panos Lianos New Member

    AIDA can only go if an athlete ASKS for AIDA judges to be present.
  6. Groenberg

    Groenberg New Member

    I also like this idea very much.

    But it's not only the aspect of pulic attention for freediving.

    As Blaine shurely isn't the athlete with the best physical condition he will have to focus on the mental aspect.
    And as he seems to be pretty shure about him getting the record there shurely is a sophisticated plan.
    I just wonder what will happen if Tom Sietas could combine his physical condition with whatever Blaine is planning to do...
  7. Haydn

    Haydn Well-Known Member

    But we will have a world renowned celebrity making claims to have broken the world record, these claims will be supported by testimony from Kirk, Martin and Mandy (and what better authority is there than these three)? Also comentators and viewers around the world will have witnessed the event. David may even claim to be the world record holder. This will never be the case, unless the static is validated by Aida. AIDA must be there, invited or not. What if David breaks 10 minutes? How will that steal the added value of our true competitors who could otherwise fairly claim to be the first to break this fantastic barrier. We must think Neil Armstrong, Chuck Yeager, Amundsen.
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2006
  8. DeepThought

    DeepThought Freediving Sloth

    David will need to cooporate with AIDA inorder to make this a valid record (blood doping is a must for example).
    If David will indeed breaks the worled record without varifying with AIDA he will actually do more damage to freediving as a recognized sport than promoting it I think. Which will put what Kirk and his team did for freediving so far for a little shame I think.
  9. Stephan Whelan

    Stephan Whelan Papa Smurf Staff Member Admin

    Folks - let me preface my comments by saying that i'm all for AIDA ratifying this record attempt and i'm sure Kirk and the PFI team have worked hard to ensure it is carried out properly.

    Now - to my position.

    If the record attempt is done under proper supervision (Kirk et al in this case) and whether or not a record is completed, don't you think the exposure that David Blaine can bring to the sport will not help it immensely? I can imagine that a huge number of people will be watching the event and will gain an understanding - if not a keen interest in FreeDiving?

    The flip side may be that the sport gains a reputation of being a "stunt" instead of a real sport so likewise it may generate negative associations.

    We will not know till the event has been run and the public and critics react afterwards.

    Till then - i'm just glad Kirk and the PFI team are involved.
  10. Walrus

    Walrus Oz freediver

    Any decent freediver can pulloff a WR static without AIDA rules....
    My best comp static under AIDA, 6.40, training 7.03. Without AIDA, anything goes sorta rules..... 15min+ !
    naiad likes this.
  11. pkotik

    pkotik FreeDiving Editor

    There seems to be some interest in transforming an event carried live by a major US television network into many millions of homes, earning tens of millions of dollars in ad revenues, making our leading freedivers household names, and being a hell of a lot of fun for everybody - into yet another obscure, monastic and poverty-preserving microhappening.

    Would it really be so awful if it came to pass that the world's top freedivers could actually earn a decent living at it ?

    Naturally, I'm pleased that my 2002 forecasts for our sport are beginning to come true : http://www.deeperblue.net/article.php/213

    I'm a little dismayed to find myself on the progressive side of this issue ! My general philosophy of life is : "It's new. It's different. I DON'T LIKE IT !".

    But let's do have fun, eh ? Remember that thing ? Freediving: recreation, not religion. With sincere apologies to any who have made it their religion.
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2006
  12. Panos Lianos

    Panos Lianos New Member

    The fact that Kirk, Martin, Mandy, the president of AIDA himself, or anyone else will be there, doesn't make it a valid AIDA wold record. There are certain procedures that one must follow in order to claim an AIDA world record. Kirk, Martin and Mandy know this better than anyone, since they follow AIDA rules themselves when they go for a world record.

    I'm fine with the publicity and everything else. But we must respect all the athletes who do their official performances with judges and protocols (doping tests, rules etc). And talking about world records (or any records) without judges there, shows some lack of respect for all these athletes. You could say "he did a static that exceeds the official world record time", but that doesn't make it a world record. Just like Tom has done more than 10min in training. Amazing, but not a world record.

    Haydn, how on earth can AIDA go there and validate the static, if an athlete dosn't want AIDA to be there?

    Isn't this simple?
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2006
  13. rcerdena

    rcerdena New Member

  14. Stephan Whelan

    Stephan Whelan Papa Smurf Staff Member Admin

    Well - let me put it this way - PFI will be paid for their time training David Blaine and I doubt it was at "normal" PFI Course rates. It most definately would be worth their while.
  15. Cliff Etzel

    Cliff Etzel Freediving::Yoga:Digital Imaging

    Paul - I disagree with your perception of keeping freediving as
    On the flip side, the over-sensationalism of this event isn't doing the sport much good either from my POV.

    Not being one to espouse the religion of freediving, I do take issue with how this is being presented to the general public - I have no problem with freediving being promoted - it needs to be, but in this particular instance, it appears to be about being a hollywood show - and how to make a quick buck without giving thought to how someone in the general populace will perceive what they have seen. Impressionable individuals - without proper training, will more than likely try to attempt the very same thing in their hot tub - with a very real potential of injury as a result - it has happened on more than one occasion. Not good PR for the sport at that point.

    This should be about presenting freediving as an experience that is unlike scuba diving.

    Having been in seclusion for sometime - and lurking about DB as well, I revisited why I became a freediver. I have my reasons - and to me - some of them are quite personal. And I am sure others would agree in saying that it is almost a form of therapy. To see the sport I love become almost a type of freak show for the general public to oooh and aahhh over - is kind of sickening.

    Freediving IS a sport - yes - promotion is good for increasing awareness of the sport - but gimme a break - all this smells of a quick buck instead of showing how freediving can allow people to truly enjoy the aquatic realm in safety.

    Media such as "The Big Blue" and "Ocean Men" are what generated interest to numerous people to freediving. If freediving has to be reduced to a level of palatable pablum for the general populace to swallow so as to appease its ever increasing A.D.D. - it ends up becoming like the rest of the dive industry - one of little substance - and one that has its 15 minutes of fame. The nay sayers feel the way they do about freediving for a reason - it IS different - it should be a sport that one has to truly believe in - no weekend warrior poser wannabe's - freedivers do what they do to be different - bringing it down to a level of mass commercialism that this is going to go to - well, we all know this is about the short term almighty buck - no matter what the long term effects may be...

    But hey - each to his own I guess... :hmm
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2006
  16. Stephan Whelan

    Stephan Whelan Papa Smurf Staff Member Admin

    I think we need to take a step back here. What do we know about the event so far:
    1. David Blaine is performing a breath-hold
    2. It is on TV
    3. Kirk Krack and the PFI Team helped train him
    4. PFI will be in-water with David Blaine as coaches/safety
    Beyond that we know nothing about the event until it happens - no matter how much we try to guess about motives, promoting the sport or trying to predict outcomes.

    We will know more on May 8th - till then everything is speculation.
  17. featherland

    featherland Well-Known Member

    Is everyone missing the point that this is a MAGIC TRICK?? Or do you really think that surgeons are theatened by magicians sawing women in half and putting them back together again?

    The presence of freediving experts on the TV show is known in the entertainment business as "patter" or "set up". Just like the policeman called from the audience to make sure the "handcuffs are real" before an escape trick.

    Don't get me wrong, many magicians are decent athletes, as many magic tricks *are* physically challenging in nature. But I trust in the intelligence of the general public to take the event for what it is, a well executed illusion. If you can get some publicity for the REAL sport in the process, great.

    Here is a good article:
  18. Cliff Etzel

    Cliff Etzel Freediving::Yoga:Digital Imaging

    hmm.. :hmm
  19. Bill

    Bill Baron of Breathold

    I heard the first rumors a few months ago, from a usually reliable source. Then Kirk mailed the 'press release' and a comment seemed appropriate. My daughter beat me to it and as you might expect from someone who writes books, did a better job.
    Wal's guess about what will happen on stage is the same as mine and we'll just have to wait to see how it turns out.
  20. efattah

    efattah Well-Known Member

    It is now only three weeks until the David Blaine event, and AIDA has not been invited (see the AIDA website). AIDA rules require announcing the record attempt one month before hand, so this record attempt won't be recognized.

    For everyone who thinks it is going to be a magic trick, please explain why David Blaine lost 50lbs of body mass on his 44 day fast, and nearly died of hypothermia after 61 hours in an ice block.... these were not magic tricks, nor were any of David's endurance stunts. Sure, give him a deck of cards and he'll do magic... In my opinion there is a good chance he will NOT pass 8'58", and if he does not, then why call it a magic trick? If he really wanted to do a magic trick, he would just do 12 minutes on pure O2 and 'blow away' the record, but I'll bet this won't happen at all.

    Finally, for those who think that the 'Big Blue' was a better promotion of the sport, let's not forget the huge number of people who died as result of that movie. Cyril Isoardi, along with many other french divers, perished after copying stunts they saw on the big blue, and sorry to inform people but the dives in the Big Blue were FAKE.... and the depths reached in the movie far surpassed the real records of 1988 (when the film was made). Doesn't that show disrespect for the REAL record holders of 1988 ?