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US National Team

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New Member
Jan 11, 2002
To all US National Team Members,

Congratulations on making the team!

Give'em hell up there.

Remeber to have fun!

Hey Deron,

Long time no hear! Thanks, and we'll do our best.

Are you going? As an individual I mean? I hear you have to try the beer and Clamato!! (tomato cocktail + .1% clam juice!) :D

Peter S.
Hi Peter,

No, I'm staying here in Kona where the water is warm.

I had enough cold water in Cyprus. :D

Plus it was going to be to rich for my blood with air fares, tryout fees and entrance fee into the worlds. Our month long trip to Brussels (worlds deepest swimming pool) and Cyprus cost us about $10,000. :waterwork

Again congrats and good luck!

Longfins- Do you know if you are staying in the dorms?
I wonder how close the teams will be staying to eachother.
I wish I could have a video of all the tips that are traded.

Yeah, the athletes will be staying in the dorms for the duration. Since I'm going ahead of time, I'll probably go camp out on the beach or something... :D

How close? Well hopefully not TOO close! But probably within the same suite or the same floor...

Peter S.

In that case I shall be seeing you there. I'm leading a team of DB staff covering the event! It's so close you can almost feel it!
So who made the team, and what happened to the last day of diving? Did they decide the team with out any actual diving?
I'm still awaiting the results from USAA to say who made the US National Team..
Cheers to the US Team. I hope you enjoy Vancouver and all it has to offer, and do well in the comp.
Erik Y.
Hey Congrats to everyone on the USA team

Our boys and girls are looking forward to showing you all what we can do in cold water!

And yes we are staying in the dorms to - from 4-13 and most of us are at the YMCA before that

Captain/Coach to the uk team
Could somebody share what went wrong with the counter balance system?

It seems in the future we/organizers should be sharing this information quite readily, since it is a system that is being employed often and new people will be devising them. It would be much safer if there was a general awareness of where pitfalls have occured in practice, so preventitive measures could be taken and better systems planned out.

My opinion. What do you think?
I'm hoping the next trials are a little more inclusive.

The location, insurance requirements etc. made it prohibitive for a lot of folks to even try out -- like how does DSV not end up not on the team? Not bitching, just genuinely interested in how to get better regional representation in the U.S.. Our national records in a lot of men's categories (free immersion, cbnf, dynamic w/ & w/o fins) don't refect the talent out there.

I realize that it's a big country and that freediving is considered a sport on the lunatic fringe, but I suspect we can do better, even w/ limited resources. If any USAA reps want to get a northeast branch started, please drop me a line. Maybe we can get some events going as early as sometime this summer. We've got facilities - we got game;).

Oh yeah - and congrats to the team members! We'll be watching:cool.
Last edited:
Pezman, I like the idea of having a Northeast or an East coast USAA group. Just reading deeper blue it's apparent that there are plenty of talented freedivers in WI, NC, NJ, NY, PA, FL, etc.

I'll be the first signature on the pettition :D

I think it is great that enterprising folks are talking about expanding USAA throughout the land.

Signatures are important.

They must be affixed to CHECKS.

For that, dear friends, is what makes it all happen. As DSV pointed out, the reason he opted out of US Nationals and
Vancouver is that he simply cannot afford it.

Until somebody can get Marlboro or Jose Cuervo or some other
sponsor to pay for us to compete, we must pay for ourselves
to compete.

This, I'm afraid, will indeed act to exclude those who cannot or
wil not pay.

Bless your enthusiasm ! Carry on !
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I have started another thread to keep this one from drifting any further off topic.
Originally posted by tylerz
Could somebody share what went wrong with the counter balance system?

It seems in the future we/organizers should be sharing this information quite readily, since it is a system that is being employed often and new people will be devising them. It would be much safer if there was a general awareness of where pitfalls have occured in practice, so preventitive measures could be taken and better systems planned out.

My opinion. What do you think?


What happened was the vertical distance between the buoys and the separation bar was a bit long, so the horizontal separation bar as well as the pulleys dipped too far below water. When you clip your lanyard to it, you're almost pulled underwater. The seas got pretty rough (rougher than 2003 Cyprus last day, I hear), so Annabel DID got pulled underwater intermittantly. She completed her dive, but things couldn't be fixed in time for the next competitor because of safety scuba's schedule.

Some remedies:

- Test the system in the same/similar condition before it goes Live. I was at last year's WRC to witness the rig incident as well as here, so we know the organizers don't always have the time to test everything. This is probably why there's the 'opener' (a non-athlete person who 'opens' the event by doing a performance)

- Have a way to communicate with the safety scubas below - it's been suggested that code streamers on rings dropped to the bottom like a tag to indicate 'wait 5 minutes', 'event cancel', 'emergency! bring up rig' etc.

I'm sure others have ideas popping up already as we have time to reflect on this. These two above were tossed about soon after the event.

Interestingly, half a dozen of us who were present know what a counterbalance is, how they are designed and constructed, and seen them in action (I have built a rig of my own) but were unfortunately not able to foresee this incident, so there's the pressure of the event to consider (the organizers were operating on less and less sleep as the event progressed). I believe there's a learning curve even if you know the stuff inside and out. So any system must have multiple safety cushions so not one event can cause harm to a competitor.

The competitors including myself probably could have continued and completed the event, but the organizers wisely cancelled it at the first signs of trouble. THAT's the hardest call to make and I'm glad to see Grant's years of tech diving experience played a role in this.

Peter S.
Can you tell us what the announced performances were for the men, I seem to remember that in Kona during the trials and during the comp the men ranged from 62 to 50 mtrs, but I did'nt recognize any of the names from this years comp so I was wondering how deep they were planning on going.
I think the announced performances are on the usaa website.
The deepest CW was 52 meters.
Peter S,

Thanks for the details.

For communication couldn't one use a combination of message streamers and those underwater writing plaques that SCUBA use if more detail is required on a specific message. Somebody at the surface writes the details and drops it down the line.

Also, it keeps being stated that the circumstances are unforeseen and definatelly proven that the systems have not been worked with to demonstrate their feasibility, under various conditions. It seems that most systems are being tested for the first time at costly competitions (not only the USAA National). And if this is not the case, whoever argues that it isn't, then please detail the processes that were taken to test these systems in advance and how these uprisings of problems varied from testing circumstances, so we can alleviate ourselves of this perspective. However, my point I am leading to here, is it seems obvious that new systems should be tested many times, before being deployed to the unsuspecting competitors. Who I guarantee, unless told ahead of time, assume the system is tried and tested.

I know the people putting these together are good people and doing things in their spare time, so don't flame me as though I am ignorant of this. If you argue this, then it suggests that the competitors are due an untested system because of poor organizing. Volunteer or not, organizing is about organizing. And good organization does not leave frequent holes (referring to the consistent problems with these systems in practice). But the systems can be tested plenty ahead of time and others can be included in this process. One mind will not see what 3 minds will. And this is part of organizing. Organizers have the time between each competition to "organize" the advancement and testing of these systems, so that does not strike me as any small window of time. It is part of the efficiency of organizing that finds one rushing to do the most important things as the time draws to a close.

Why not have weekends where you simulate a competition with the rigs? People come out to try the system out and help work on the issues. Bit by bit the system's performance is assessed and suggestions are pooled. We have lots of problem solvers in the communities, many perform intensive problem solving for their jobs every day or just out of passion.

Anyhow, maybe some out there feel there has been considerable testing and proper approach taken to these systems, and maybe you are right. Myself, and I am certain others, would love to understand the extent to wish this may be the case. Especially, one should be aware that if it is detailed, then probably people with more experience could shed some light on fundamental holes in the organizing process, which allow these problems to regularly occur. Maybe... and maybe these are just unforeseeable. But discussion and community/multi-person involvment will only improve it.


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