Jeanine Grasmeijer (1993) was born in Emmen, the Netherlands, and grew up in de Achterhoek. She joined the swim club as a young girl and early on learned the joy of swimming and being in the water. Being a very studious girl and reluctant to take part in competitions, she never swam competitively but always for her enjoyment. After high school she left to go backpacking in South East Asia and came across a specialized freediving school in Koh Tao, Thailand. Drawn to the idea of learning to hold her breath and being able to stay under water for longer, she signed up for a freediving lesson. Within two months of training Jeanine could hold her breath over 7 minutes, a skill that was thought to be exclusive to the top 10 freediving women in the world. In the summer of ’12, hardly 6 months after she started freediving, she entered her first competition and broke two Dutch records: Free Immersion with -67 meters and Static with 6 minutes and 31 seconds.
Pursuing her new found passion Jeanine trained in the summer of ’13 for the AIDA Individual Depth World Championships in Greece. It was in Greece that she put herself on the map by breaking a world record in a pre-comp. She dove to -90 meters in the discipline of Free Immersion, coming up after 4 minutes and 17 seconds as the youngest female world record holder (20 years) in the history of freediving.
During the World Championships of ’13 Jeanine also set new Dutch records in two other depth disciplines: No Fins (-60 m) and Constant Weight (-80 m). After the WC she went home to get her Bachelor degree in medicine studies, which she had started one year prior. Over ’14 Jeanine continued to do small pool competitions, earning several medals and improving (some of her own) national records.
In the summer of ’15 she returned to the deep to fulfill her dream of becoming world champion Free immersion at the AIDA Depth World Championships in Cyprus, at which she succeeded with a dive to -82 meters. One month later she also became the female winner of the Big Blue World Cup in la Paz, Mexico with good overall performances in all 3 depth disciplines.
In ’16 she finally established herself as a master in Free Immersion, by breaking the world record in that discipline again with -92 meters in the Bonaire Deep Sea Challenge.
Jeanine currently resides in Maastricht, the Netherlands, where she studies and works as a freediving instructor. In 2017 Jeanine will compete in various depth competitions, including the AIDA Individual Depth World Championships (22 Aug – 3 Sep) in Roatan, Honduras.
Free Immersion 92 m (Video) – World record
Constant Weight 80 m
Constant Weight No Fins 60 m ‐ Dutch national record
Dynamic 178 m ‐ Dutch national record
Dynamic No Fins 130 m (Video)
Static 6 minutes 31 seconds ‐ Dutch national record
For more information on Dutch records and freediving in the Netherlands, go to DFA.nu.