Diving for the Feeling

Krista Stryker
10 min readMar 12, 2024

Suzy Malseed and her Passion for Freediving

Illustration by Mihajlo Stojanovic

“The first time in my whole life I ever experienced silence was when I went underwater. Everything went quiet. I just fell in love.” — Suzy Malseed

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“What’s this?”

Suzy Malseed stops short as she spots a table labeled Freediving across the room at the Auckland, New Zealand sports expo. She came here only one day after graduating from college as a way of getting to know her new city. Something about the word draws her in — even though she’s never heard of it.

“It’s going underwater and holding your breath,” says John Wright, the person manning the booth. Then he asks her a simple question that sends her plunging headfirst into a whole new world that, to this day, she hasn’t left and says she never will.

“Want to give it a try?”

“That. I’ll do that,” she says, agreeing to the offer. “That’s my thing.”

It was a knowing — and fortunately, there was a way to confirm it right away.



Krista Stryker

Performance coach, writer, and athlete. I write about how you can experience personal transformation through movement and exercise. www.kristastryker.com