By Shannine O’Neill
TERRIFYING footage shows this woman freediving through the tightest hole you are likely to see 99-feet underwater while holding her breath for three-minutes and 30-seconds because it helps her RELAX.
Bartender Tiffany Marie Owen (30) from St. Petersburg, Florida, USA started freediving over a year ago and can now hold her breath for a total of three-and-a-half minutes, even though people tell her online that her videos bring out their phobias.
In this insane video we can see Tiffany descending through the hideaway hole at Ginnie Springs, Florida, where incredibly Nestle has been known to pump over one-million gallons per day for the company’s bottled water business.
Freediving is a form of underwater diving that relies on breath-holding until resurfacing, rather than having any breathing equipment.
There are extreme and sometimes deadly consequences to freediving, if not carried out correctly, because of the breathing limits and the pressure associated with such low depths in the water.
In this video, Tiffany had three safety divers who accompanied her, two above the hole and one who dove with her below and the whole dive only took 30-seconds.
“For this attempt, I had three safety divers,” she said.
“Two of my safety divers were on the top of the hole and the third safety diver that followed me down and waited until I surfaced.
“I don’t mind tight spaces, I find comfort in them, I felt safe and confident.
“It was a quick dive, it only took about 30 seconds from start to finish.
Tiffany finds freediving relaxing and is able to get into a deep meditative state while diving.
“It’s more about relaxing the mind, slowing your heart rate, and being in a meditative state before diving,” she said.
“Our mammalian dive reflex plays a major role in our multi-system physiological response to being in water, just like manatees, otters and dolphins.
“Humans were meant to dive.”
Although Tiffany finds the sport to be relaxing and loves being in the tight spaces in the caves, many who watch her content on social media have claimed to feel uncomfortable and claustrophobic when watching her dive.
“Freediving is an amazing sport that has helped me build mental fortitude, relaxation is everything in this sport,” she said.
“ A lot of people claim my videos make them feel claustrophobic and a bunch of other phobias.
“The general public, I don’t think they understand it.
“Which is why I use my platform to help inform them of the safety precautions and procedures behind the scenes.”
After getting into freediving over a year ago, Tiffany has been able to get certified, which Tiffany says is imperative as the sport can be fatal if not performed correctly.
“I started solo paddle boarding a few years ago after having my first baby once a week to get some alone time,” she said.
“I started meeting freedivers, a friend I had met invited me to a freediving meet up with central florida Freedivers.
“Yes, there is always a healthy amount of fear involved, which is why I always dive with a safety team when I am attempting a new (to me) swim through a cave.
“This sport can be deadly, which is why I feel people need to know how to do it as safely as possible. I encourage anyone who is interested in freediving to go and get certified.”
Although freediving has given Tiffany a world of benefits, it has also made her realise the damage that the environment has succumbed to because of population and pollution in Florida, as she has even found rubbish in the caves she explores.
“The population in Florida has exploded,” she said.
“Florida is facing severe challenges due to the continuing development and destruction of our land.
“The animal population is declining, Florida coral reefs are dying, red tide is getting worse with every passing year.
“The health of Florida springs are also declining due to the use of fertilisers, and due to human impacts the submerged aquatic vegetation is dying and being replaced by algae.
“I find trash everywhere I go, even in the caves.”