Amber Fillary set a new World Record by diving 70 meters in freezing water, wearing a two-piece bathing suit… all for mental health awareness.
Oppsjø, Norway (03 March 2020) – Amber Fillary is an accomplished free diver who recently set a new World Record in Norway. One would ask, why attempt to dive into freezing waters? For Amber, it was all in aid of raising awareness for the plight of those suffering from mental illness.
Amber hasn’t been shy to share her own struggles with depression. In the past, she has shied away from swimming challenges due to her mental health. By using swimming as her medium, Amber is able to manage her own wellness as well as raise awareness for mental health.
Amber attempted to set the new record back in 2019. She travelled to Finland where she hoped to break Johanna Nordblat’s World Record which was set in March 2015. Johanna set the record by diving 50 metres under the ice in 2 °C water while only wearing a swimsuit, mask and cap.
Amber failed to set a new record but refused to give up. The failure triggered her depression and addiction, but Amber worked hard to overcome it and try again.
“You will recall that I broke the record in training but on the day of the attempt became entangled in the camera cables and had to abort my dream.
This setback plunged me into a battle with my depression and addiction. I have emerged renewed but it was an uphill struggle.” – Amber Fillary
She planned and prepped and set her 2020 goal. Now, she can proudly say she did it wearing nothing but a bikini and a proudly South African swimming cap.
Her journey to setting this record was filled with ups and downs, much like the process of dealing with mental health. Her successes are empowered by her failures and using them to raise awareness about the global disease if powerful in its own right!
Congratulations on your success Amber, you have made South Africa incredibly proud! Take a look at her record below.
View this post on Instagram