Soneva Fushi invites shark savers to freedive and swim with sharks in their sanctuary

1Main – Regional Director of Shark Savers and leader of the ”I’m FINished with Fins” campaign, Jonn Lu was invited to sustainable luxury resort in the Maldives, Soneva Fushi to freedive with sharks in the UNESCO Biosphere protected Baa Atoll.

A hobby scuba diving instructor and freediver, Jonn Lu jumped at the chance to launch Soneva Fushi’s new freediving experience. As the first resort in the Indian Ocean to offer freediving to resort guests, Soneva Fushi has enlisted the expertise of Danish-Japanese Freediving Instructor and athlete, Ken Kiriyama, who is also the Danish National Team freediver, to guide and share the magical experience of exploring the underwater world in one held breath.

Jonn Lu said: ”It was a privilege to be in the Maldives to swim in an ocean that provides sharks with protection against shark fishing. Freediving is a very unique way to experience the ocean with the lowest possible environmental impact; all that’s required is a swimsuit and and a mask, and sometimes perhaps a pair of fins. This is by far the purest way to be in the ocean with marine life, without being encumbered by heavy scuba diving accoutrements. In a similar way, this is how our ancestors experienced the ocean for thousands of years.”

Soneva Fushi owners, Sonu and Eva Shivdasani have actively campaigned for many years to champion the conservation agenda for the Maldivian shark population. The Maldivian government commendably introduced a ban on shark fishing in all its waters in 2010. The ban is a great step forward for shark conservation and prevents fishermen from hunting sharks in up to 12 nautical miles (22 kilometres) off the atoll coasts. Soneva Fushi is the newest corporate supporter of the “FINished with FINS” campaign and Sonu and Eva say that they are proud to be invited to play the role of Corporate Campaign Ambassadors for the Maldives. In their role, they will endeavor to recruit other corporates to join the campaign, and to assist in plans to help thwart illegal catchment of sharks by poachers in Maldivian waters.

Soneva Fushi has reintroduced Freediving Course for the peak season (till April/May 2014); one centered upon the foundations of breath, awareness, relaxation, safety and knowledge. Some people freedive for fun and to observe marine life, and others for the meditative and introspective nature of the sport. There are also those who want to improve their aquatic skills, depth and time, or to experience a break-through.

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