An interview with the former WR holder in Dynamic without Fins: Renate de Bruyn
Interviews :: 2006-03-31 05:57:55
April 16th 2005, when I enter the parents home of Renate in Zevenbergen (NL) she is ready as ever to start the interview. Energetic as she is within 2 minutes I have a drink in front of me and we have laughed for 2 minutes. 2-times World Record holder* and “harum-scarum” Renate de Bruyn born in Zevenbergen the 10th of April 1981 and works as a sports instructor in the Dutch Royal Air Force (air force base Woensdrecht).
This explains her passion for everything related to sports. That in her overfull agenda there is space to train for a sport as freediving is simply amazing, but currently Renate has held the World Record Dynamic without fins (100m/104m) for 1.5 years and took the bronze medal on the 1st individual World Championships in Renens (Ch).
From young age on Renate has spend lots of time in the pool but not only to learn to swim. Before receiving her first diploma she has had 2 years of education; the instructor could shout as loud as she could but Renate didn’t listen because she was under water all the time. After graduating from high school she followed a 1-year post-graduation course in “sports and movement” and after that she chose to go to the CIOS to become an official sports instructor.
Still not knowing enough about sports she continued her education in
with the outdoor sports school ALO. Hereafter she started her first job that started with 16 weeks of basic military training, 11 weeks of military sports education and 10 weeks of work education. She still works this first job but again started studying on the Fontys Sports university (graduating July 2006) and in the mean time also received her NFDB Pool Freediver Instructor certification.
When in June 2002 the Dutch National Championships were organised in Eindhoven Renate paid the competition a visit to see again a new sport and to taste the atmosphere. Without any training or knowledge of the sport she had a go in a lane that was empty (but with safety) and swam 59m DNF, at the same time in the opposite lane Nanja swam a new Dutch record of 67m, not much of a difference. That she had talent to go much farther came also to attention of
(still her coach/trainer) and Jorg Jansen. Both gentlemen guided her to a promising 82m in December 2002 and with this the World Record of Nathalie Desreac (95m) came within sight, with big steps Renate came within reach of the World Record with an easy 93m in May 2003. Even after Yamina Enedahl-Mekki took the World Record with 97m, Renate countered with again an easy 98m in a Dutch competition. Her performances had to result in a WR; October 2003 she took the WR with a safe 100m on the first day. Finally the best of the world, “October 10th and 11th is imprinted in my memory: it is nice to be excelling in a sport, but it gets a lot better if you get rewarded for your performances. My record attempt was beautifully organised and we had loads of public, that was a lot of fun.”
The most important question, what is Renate’s secret? “I have no secret! I am a realistic person, love what I do and train hard. With being realistic I mean that I can also accept if things don’t go as planned every now and then or when having a bad day. My training is important to me because I think a freedive performance is 40% physical and 60% mental, the last one is harder to train. My physical training consists, due to my job, of a lot of sports and that is fine with me as long as it makes my goals possible. So I train cardio but also spent a lot of time in the water.”
She doesn’t really have a big freedive example, although Renate appreciates some character personalities in special; “Tanya Streeter I met in Paris (F) and Patrick Musimu in Utrecht (NL) and they are so ‘normal’ and not arrogant, that is what I like in great athletes. I learn a lot form our club of freedivers, all down-to-earth, nice people” The respect for people that act ‘normal’ she learned from her parents “my parents thaught me that things with the biggest value are often the things that cost the least. I have great respect for my parents because all they achieved in their lives comes from themselves, I hope later I can look back at my live and feel the same.”
If you have Renate choose a favourite discipline within freediving she will pick DNF (Dynamic No Fins), just because she finds that the most fun to do;
“during the swimming I forget everything, that gives me peace of mind and is relaxing and also very important as I need to have something to do while holding my breath, with swimming I have a distraction. Maybe it is strange to say but when training static I do not get distracted and I can’t stand that”. This remarkable point straight away explains the fact that Renate performs exceptionally well in areas with loads of noise or crowds. “Nerves don’t effect me a lot and when expectations are high it is in my advantage”.
Luckily Renate has a lot of challenges ahead of her: “as long as I have pleasure in training I will continue and of course like to get my record back. Of course I will keep studying, eventually go more in the direction of anatomy and physiology” Finally, of courseI want to know if she has a tip for all readers: “My only advice to the readers/freedivers is only to do things that you like to do and that bring you pleasure and to stop doing them if the joy disappears”
* at the time of the interview the World Record was still in the hands of Renate. On April 23rd 2005 Natalia Molchanova broke the record for the first to
after which Natalia broke her own record a few more times to the current distance.