By Kristina Zvaritch
The 2021 CMAS World Freediving Indoors Championship in Belgrade, Serbia will be held from June 21-27, 2021, and it will be the first competition as Molchanovs athletes for Mai Morimura from Japan and Rami Bladlav from Sweden.
Mai currently lives in Sweden and will be competing in Dynamic (DYN), Dynamic with Bi-fins (DYN BF), and Dynamic without Fins (DNF), and will be using both the A2024 Noseclip and the A6063 Noseclip, as well as the CM3 Monofin with medium stiffness. Rami will compete in Static (STA) and DYN and will be using a 5mm Men’s Training Wetsuit, a 5mm Men’s Performance - Hoodless Wetsuit, an A6063 Noseclip, and a CM3 Monofin with medium stiffness.
We sat down with both athletes to hear their thoughts on the upcoming competition.
Molchanovs: The CMAS World Freediving Indoors Championships are quickly approaching. How do both of you feel about going into competition?
Mai Morimura: I feel excited at the moment. Nervous too. This will be my first time competing outside of Sweden and also my first time with CMAS. There are many new things and it feels challenging, but great experiences and learning always come when you are outside of your comfort zone. So I am curious and I will try to enjoy it; it will be fun to see all the other inspirational athletes from all over the world.
Rami Bladlav: It feels amazing; it gives my training extra focus and motivation. I know that competing in a World Championship does not happen many times in life, so I’m trying to do my best, even if it’s my first World Championship. I’m very happy that I qualified.
Molchanovs: Big congratulations to both of you for competing! What are your competition goals and/or expectations?
MM: I have been practicing only DNF and DYN BF, and my goal is to have nice dives with white cards. DYN will be just enjoying the moment since I will get my monofin on the same day that I compete. My expectations are to get white cards in all disciplines, and if I get a PB (personal best), then I’ll be very happy. I also want to work on my mental state, see other inspirational athletes and learn from them, enjoy myself, take it all in, and experience it fully.
RB: My goal is to be in the top 3 in STA. It may be a bit hard and unrealistic, but I decided on this goal to have great motivation while training. My expectations are to perform on top and push close to my limits.
Molchanovs: Good luck to you both! Can you tell us how your training has been going for this competition?
MM: I have a personal training program which is made just for me! I had some expectation problems a few weeks ago for the World Championship: my own expectations and also expectations from the outside. I got nervous and could not find joy, but it is released now and I’m in good form.
RB: It’s been a tough year with the pandemic. But in the end, my club helped the team book some places and we got very good training in these last 2 months. I am working with Florian Dagoury and Valdemar Karlsson for training. Valdemar and I train and coach each other every day, and I talk to Florian every day to do small changes in my training. I’m finding a perfect balance while planning my training with them.
When I train dry, it’s hypoxia with empty lungs. In the water, I do short warm-ups or no warm-ups and then I do long breath-holds. Once a week, I do some CO2 tables; I like the Molchanov STA maximum 20 minutes. I do lots of cardio and weight lifting up until 3 weeks before the competition.
Molchanovs: Do either of you have a special diet or exercise regimen?
MM: No special diet! I eat what I like, mostly Asian and Japanese food. I drink a lot of tea!
RM: Yes, I’m eating less and fewer times per day. Maximum 2 times per day to keep my body weight and metabolism low. It’s nothing extreme, but I don’t recommend it to anyone without the help of experts.
Molchanovs: That’s really interesting, thank you for sharing! Where are both of your favorite places to train?
MM: Stockholm, Sweden, with my friends at Freedive Nordic. The people I train with are both funny and motivated, and I feel lots of joy while training.
RM: Any swimming pool from 16°C (60°F) with a 5mm wetsuit, and up to 33°C (91°F) with no wetsuit.
Molchanovs: Do you have anyone you especially admire or an inspirational figure in the freediving world?
MM: My buddies in Stockholm who train with me inspire me every day. Also Mirela Kardasevic! She is such an amazing person, strong both mentally and physically, and very friendly.
RM: They are many. I watch clips on YouTube and talk to many freedivers. I’m learning from everyone, but a person who’s been very important in my freediving career is Valdemar Karlsson. He’s helping anyone who wants to learn about freediving, and his passion for pool training, breath-holding, and teaching is unique.
Check out Mai and Rami on Instagram!
Mai Morimura: @mai.sailor
Rami Bladlav: @ramibladlav
Stay tuned for Molchanovs daily competition reports of the 2021 CMAS World Freediving Indoors Championship in Belgrade, Serbia!