Saturday, January 27, 2007

Jacques Mayol

"A French national born in Shanghais China in 1927, Jacques Mayol was known as the ‘Dolphin Man’ due to his underwater exploits in the field of free diving along with the special relationships he developed with dolphins.

Mayol’s fascination with the sea arose from a close friendship with a dolphin named Clown at the Seaquarium in Miami, Florida, where he was sent from Radio Canada as a journalist to both research an article and produce an audio piece. The director of Programs and Events at the Seaquarium invited him to stay. Mayol accepted and began working on the maintenance of the tanks and the dietary concerns of the various marine creatures. At the same time, he was also given permission to dive in the big tank with all of the dolphins including one destined to become his special friend, Clown.

Clown taught Mayol how to hold his breath longer on every dive, how to behave underwater, and how to integrate himself with the water totally and finally, how to laugh inside. Thanks to these lessons, he also integrated the powers of Yoga and Oriental philosophies with his dive skills, disciplines he first became aware of while growing up in Japan. This emotional and psychological discipline opened the path that led to his record setting 100 meter dive."

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