The SuperHOME Cup is one of the many depth competitions you can find throughout the year if you enjoy competing in freediving. This competition was organised by Freedive SuperHOME which is located on the small tropical island of Panglao, Philippines. It was the second time that I competed in a depth competition - the first one being organised by the Apnea Association of Singapore in Bali in September 2018.
The SuperHOME Cup was the first few competitions of the year which were incorporating the new discipline set by AIDA International: CWTB (Constant Weight Bi-fins). Previously, the discipline of CWT (Constant Weight) incorporated both Bi-Fins and Mono-Fins into the same category. Therefore, we saw numerous NRs (National Records) being set during the competition.
Being one of the few competitors who can barely reach 50m in depth, I was quite intimidated. But I constantly told myself, “the only competition in freediving is with yourself.” Prior to the competition, I trained for a few months after a long hiatus from the water. I also participated in the Singapore Pool Competition 2019, a month before the SuperHOME Cup, as a stepping stone to get back in shape for the dives. The trainings you do in the pool can roughly translate to your performance in depth if equalisation is not a problem for you.
In Panglao, it was just the sun, sand and the deep blue for 2 weeks straight. It took me about 2 days of diving to get back to my previous PB (Personal Best). After I started to push past my previous personal best, it got harder. I was equalising with the Frenzel technique all the way till 40m, where I realised that I had reached my RV (Residual Volume). This meant that I had no more air to equalise with. To overcome this, I had to relearn the Mouthfill technique from other senior freedivers. After a few days of trial and error, I was back in the game and I was able to go deeper than before!
The new CWTB discipline was up on the first day of the competition. It was a little scary, as I was attempting a new PB, but I managed to pull through. I knew my body and capabilities, but my mind was tempting me to turn early because I was afraid. So I had to fight that inner voice. I dived, made the turn at end of the rope and came up clean with a new PB and default NR.
The second day was a breeze, as I love FIM (Free Immersion) and the dive was a relaxing one.
The last day was when I got over my fear of attempting a PB for CNF, knowing that my last deep dive was only at the previous competition 6 months ago. I don't trust myself enough, which affects my performance in CNF. No aid in going down or coming back up other than my human arms and legs? No way! But your body has a way of telling you what it can and wants to do. In the end, I did a clean CNF dive and ended the competition on a high note. I couldn't stop smiling all the way till I reached the shore.
Overall, it was a great experience to dive alongside familiar faces and new found friends. I discovered new limits and encountered familiar voices during my dives. Freediving is an ever-learning journey which will always leave you in an “aha” moment. To many more discoveries!