Brad James, born in Auckland, New Zealand, is a passionate freediving athlete, instructor, and national record holder. From an early age, Brad was drawn to the water, engaging in activities like snorkeling and swimming before taking up scuba diving, and basic freediving. However, it was his foray into spearfishing that properly ignited his fascination with freediving. Determined to improve his breath-holding abilities, Brad enrolled in freediving courses, which marked the beginning of his journey.
In 2015, Brad participated in his first freediving competition in the pool, but it wasn't until 2019 that he made his debut in depth competitions. Since then, he has hit many freediving milestones, but the highlight was setting his first National Record in Constant Weight Bi-fins in February 2023. Prior to this his performances also earned him silver medals at the New Zealand Depth Nationals in 2020, 2021, and 2022.
Not wanting to settle, Brad has set his sights on competing in international events in 2023, to represent New Zealand on a global stage. His training regimen includes pool work during the winter months, depth training in Lake Pupuke, Auckland, and frequent trips to Lake Taupo. Complementing his aquatic training, Brad also dedicates himself to gym workouts, running, breathwork, dry equalization training, and yoga.
As a member of the Auckland Freediving Club, Brad actively contributes to the freediving community. He has served as the Club President and a Board Member for Freediving New Zealand. Brad's dedication to the sport extends to sharing his knowledge and expertise as an AIDA Master Instructor. Since becoming an instructor in 2017 and achieving Master Instructor status in 2022, he has guided numerous students, focusing on creating a safe and comfortable learning environment. Brad's teaching philosophy emphasizes building confidence, exploring breath-holding capabilities, and safely pushing limits. Drawing from his personal experiences, he integrates practical examples to support theoretical concepts.
Brad's impact as an instructor is exemplified by several of his students who have gone on to become instructors themselves, perpetuating his dedication to spreading the joy and art of freediving. Seeking new depths and experiences, Brad James continues to push his boundaries while freediving. His future aspirations include adding more records to his resume and exploring new and exciting locations.