Pierre Frolla, the Flying Freediver

Publication date: 11/8/2017
The world record-holding freediver has developed a revolutionary wetsuit that makes it possible to fly underwater like a Manta Ray.

OceanWings, the wetsuit developed by the Monegasque champion with a group of his friends, revolutionizes adventure under the seas – it's in the shape of a wing, enabling freedivers to transform themselves into a Manta Ray, to glide in the oceans and meet the sea giants that live there!
It's the story of both a champion and a poet.  Between 1996 and 2007, Pierre Frolla set new freediving records.  Then, he created diving schools in Monaco to make the public - especially children - aware of the fragility of the marine world.
For this big-hearted man, adventure is above all about meeting people and sharing.  And his passion is the sea!  He has always wanted to "become water" and merge as much as possible with the marine environment, to meet the giants who inhabit it.

To realize his dream, he designed a tool that combined the grace of the Manta Ray with the discretion of the whale shark and the speed of the dolphin...

After four years of development with designers from the largest dive equipment manufacturers, the prototype was perfect!  It is both aesthetic and autonomous, making it possible to glide at a very high speed while freediving;  quite simply, it's a revolutionary way to explore the oceans.  The "OceanWings - Meet the Giants" adventure could begin.  A first expedition took place this summer in Monaco, with a "gliding" dive over the Toulonnais, a wreck that contains a huge artificial reef, and in the depths of Cape Estel. Also on our champion's agenda are swimming with schools of hammerhead sharks in the Galapagos, racing with dolphins in the Bahamas, gliding with the Manta Rays of Hawaii, sliding into the ocean depths with the sperm whales of the Indian Ocean and making contact with humpback whales in Rangiroa ... A world tour like no other!

Après quatre années de mise en point avec les designers des plus grands équipementiers de plongée, le prototype est parfait ! A la fois esthétique, autonome et permettant de planer à très grande vitesse en apnée statique, il révolutionne tout simplement la façon d’explorer les océans.  L’aventure « OceanWings : Meet the Giants » peut commencer. Une première expédition a eu lieu cet été à Monaco, avec une plongée « planante » au-dessus du Toulonnais, une épave qui accueille un immense récif artificiel, et dans les canyons du cap Estel. D’autres sont au programme de notre champion : nager avec les bancs de requins marteaux aux Galapagos, faire la course avec les dauphins aux Bahamas, planer avec les raies manta d’Hawaï, glisser dans les abymes avec les cachalots de l’océan Indien, vibrer au contact des baleines à bosse à Rangiroa … Un tour du monde vraiment pas comme les autres !

OceanWings could not have been created without the help of...
- Guillaume Binard, designer at Aqualung's Dream Lab (one of the largest dive equipment manufacturers for more than 70 years)
- Peyo Lizzarazu, creator of a lifejacket for surfers, who kindly allowed Pierre Frolla to adapt it to his suit.
- Pierre Frolla's team of enthusiasts:  Marc Counil, Yohan Bray, Philippe Somaini, Marcel Ginestet and Jimmy Golaz.
- Submarine Nice, which developed a pocket to accommodate an inflation system that gives the suit perfect autonomy.


© Alexis Rosenfeld  (photos 1, 2, 4)
© Jerôme Espla (photo 3)