WED | LOOK: Training for Freediving in the Philippines by Thibault Guignes | So we know that Thibault Guignes as the instructor behind Camotes Freediving in the Philippines. But let’s find out the story and what happened before establishing his freediving center, let’s get to know Thibault a little bit more.
Thibault was born in Bordeaux, France, but he grew up in La Rochelle and Brittany, areas that are near the sea. He decided to study Oceanography, and during his doctoral research trip that brought him to French Polynesia, he realized that he belongs to a life in the open and on beautiful islands. He created a plan to set up a scuba diving shop somewhere in the tropical seas. After working 5 years as an employee, Thibault set out into the world to find a suitable place for his scuba shop. In the process, he was introduced to freediving at the beginning of 2014.
That was the moment that changed his life forever. He immediately rearranged his life plans around the sport. The initial scuba shop shifted and instead, Thibault operated Freediving HQ in Cebu, Philippines. Thibault started to train intensively and quickly became one of the rising stars of Freediving. Only after a year, he was selected as part of the French Team to compete in the 2015 World Championships.
He specialized in depth disciplines and is recognized as one of the deepest freedivers in the world. Thibault earned quite a number of medals and broke freediving records in 2019, including the top French national record for the Free Immersion discipline (117m). In the same year he ranked 5th in the world in the Constant Weight Bi-fins discipline as well. He was the winner of the OceanQuest Curacao challenge, the Japanese Cup in Panglao, Philippines and came in 2nd in the Blue Element competition in Dominca.
His progression was not left unnoticed by Molchanovs, a freediving movement that is revolutionizing freediving education and training. Thibault is not only a Molchanovs athlete, as he is the head of the Molchanovs Education and member of the Molchanovs Movement Board. He personally attends to his students, and maps out an individualized training course for each one.
This year he is equally excited about training and entering competitions again, and further developing at Camotes Freediving as a premiere training center for freediving in the Philippines, and arguably even the world. The calm waters offer unlimited depths, and a newly installed platform with counterweight provides important safety measures for all the trainees. Even before freediving in open water, students receive lectures and have discussions in the cozy classrooms at the center and achieve breathhold goals in the 25m swimming pool.
Thibault has definitely contributed to the advancement of Freediving as a sport, a profession and an industry. So don’t be surprised if freediving in the Philippines will include international competitions at Camotes Freediving Center. See you there!