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July 11, 2010


US Women’s Freediving Team Wins Bronze Medal in the 2010 AIDA Team Freediving World Championship with New Women’s National Record


Okinawa, Japan.  The United States Women’s Freediving Team finished third in the 2010 AIDA Team Freediving World Championships.  The team concluded their performances today with the Dynamic Apnea event.  Andrea Kawabata reached a new US Women’s National Record in the event with a swim of 146 meters (479 feet).  This performance beat the old record held by Annabel Edwards who was also competing as part of the US Team.   

The women needed to make strong performances in this last discipline to secure their medal.  They entered the dynamic event in first place needing near personal bests to hold on for third.  They did just that.

Andrea said, “I have wanted this and the record.  I have trained for six months to go for the record and I am so happy I got it and we placed so well here.  The competition was so strong, I am so happy we hung in there and won the bronze.  All the work has been worth it!”

The team is made up of three women; Andrea, Annabel and Annabel’s daughter Jessica Wilson.  This is Andrea’s first world championship.  Annabel and Jessica have been members of the US team for the past decade. 

The US Men’s Freediving Team is also participating in the event.  The team consisting of Leo Muraoka, Ron Smith, and Ben Weiss placed seventh. 

The AIDA Team Freediving World Championships is a biannual event that tests nations to send their best three male and female athletes to compete as a male and female team.  Three freediving disciplines are contested in depth, time and distance of apnea.  This year’s event is being hosted by AIDA Japan with over ten nations participating.  For full results checkout

The depth event is known as Constant Weight and requires the athlete to freedive with fins or a mono fin on a single breath to a prescribed depth and return with a tag.  The time event is a pure breath hold for a maximum time with the athlete lying face down in a pool, known as Static Apnea.  The distance event is known as Dynamic Apnea and requires the athlete to swim on one breath with fins or a mono fin as far as they can while submerged in a pool.

The team championships differs from most freediving competitions because it awards the team with the highest point total from three athletes in three disciplines rather than individual performances.  This requires teams to plan and strategize performances to ensure that the maximum point totals are achieved and to not risk disqualification by any team member.  Disqualification in even a single discipline results in zero points for that performance and can move a team down the ranking list dramatically.  The team that is able to field three athletes that do well in all three disciplines rather than one or two tends to rank very well. 

The USAA is a nonprofit association founded on the democratic representation of freediving within the United States and internationally.  Founded in 2003, the USAA consists of an active membership dedicated to furthering freediving in the United States and abroad. For more information about the USAA, the U.S. National Freediving Team, and membership please visit

The International Association for the Development of Freediving, AIDA, is the international sanctioning body for freediving, individual and team competition, and freediving world record attempts.  For more information about AIDA please visit


Images available upon request. 


Contact Information:

Grant W. Graves, President
United States Apnea Association, USAA

3642 Seahorn Dr.
Malibu, CA 90265
Phone: 310-560-6104

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Pictures provided by Rebecca Garrett, Deron Verbeck, Tec Clark and Jon Zeaman.