Jacques Mayol

Jacques Mayol ( born April 1, 1927 in Shanghai, † 22 December 2001 Capoliveri on Elba) was a French apnea divers.

Jacques Mayol was the first diver who came to a depth of over 100 meters on November 23, 1976 without a respirator. He held several world records in freediving. The achievements in this area served as a model for the film The Big Blue.

His immersion technique was based less on muscle training and maximizing air storage for the descent, but rather on the psychological preparation and concentration on the dive. This approach corresponded to the very connected with nature psyche Mayols.

In 2000 he published his nearly 400 -page book Homo Delphinus: The Dolphin Within Man.

Early association Mayol his passion for diving with his interest in underwater archeology and fabled, lost cultures. He examined in the Mediterranean, off the coast of Marseille, and located in the shoal Veyron, putative ruin conditioning, undertook diving excursions to the Bimini Road ( Bahamas) and underwater archaeological sites in the Canary Islands and the Yonaguni Monument in the East China Sea.

In the 1990s, Mayol was a role model and friend who always stronger with increasing age observed depression in him, which eventually led to Mayols suicide by hanging in his home on the island of Elba for the world-class Umberto Pelizzari Apnoisten. He left behind a son and a daughter.

In his memory, the sinking of a monument on the island of Elba off the coast of his place of residence. This monument is located about 16 m depth at the Gemini islands in the southeast of Elba.


  • Biography and more
  • Diving basically commits suicide. Obituary of the BBC, December 24, 2001.