VIDEO: World Record Under-Ice Freedive

Watch Stig Severinsen swim 236 feet on one breath of air
Staff Writer

In March of 2010, Stig Severinsen, a Dane with his PhD in medicine, broke the Guiness world record for longest freedive under ice, swimming 72 meters (roughly 236 feet, or the height of a 26-story building) on a single breath of air. Later that same year, he won another Guiness title by holding his breath for more than 20 minutes. Two years after that, he broke his own record yet again, sitting underwater for more than 22 minutes.

Which is to say that when this video warns you to "not try this at home," declaring Severinsen the "ULTIMATE Super Human," well...that title doesn't seem as laughable as it does when it's the first thing to hit the screen. 

There's still plenty in the video to be weirded out and entranced by, though. It's in Danish, for one, so Severinsen's bizarre breathing routine goes unexplained. And at the end, the 39-year-old lounges in the freezing water, giving an OK sign, speaking a word of English, and then just, you know, chilling.

But when you're a four-time World Champion freediver—and set at least one of those records while swimming beneath two holes in a solid sheet of ice—and the author of a book by the title, "Breatheology: The Art of Conscious Breathing," maybe a splash in freezing water and a new world record is just what the Ultimate Super Human needs to kick back.


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