Lyn, Ontario – Dive Ontario was excited to catch-up with former Forest City Diving Club (FCDC) diver, Al’X Jordan Pierre. Al’X had a lengthy conversation with us on a variety of subjects, check out our extensive interview below!

Q: At what age did you begin to dive?

I started diving competitively at 9 years old

Q: What does diving mean to you? 

To me, diving meant an opportunity to push myself past what I thought my limits were with the help of my teammates and my coaches.

Q: Why did you start diving? 

It was recommended to me by the head diving coach of Forest City Diving Club at the time, Ioana Marinescu. I’ve always enjoyed playing in the water, and getting to jump in was even more enjoyable.

Q: What keeps you motivated? (specifically during COVID) 

COVID has made it increasingly difficult for children to participate in activities. Knowing that their diving lessons are one of their chances to get out of the house motivates me to make their practice rewarding by feeling a sense of accomplishment by the end of practice.

Q: Favourite dive?

5337D, Reverse two and a half somersault, three and one half twist.

Q: What is your greatest accomplishment as a diver?

Setting a provincial record in Ontario.

Q: Favourite memory from diving?

The trips across the province and country to get to competitions. I always enjoyed looking out the window with my headphones in while watching the scenery. At the time they seemed dreadful because it was a lot of time sitting still, but I enjoy looking back at the traveling opportunities that diving provided for me.

Q: Favourite exercise?

Land somersaults onto mats.

Q: What are some lessons you have learned since you began diving?

  1. Believing you can do something is the first step in accomplishing it.
  2. Being open to new ideas gives you more opportunities to learn.

Q: Biggest fear while diving?

I was always scared of hitting the board. There’s a sweet spot for dives to land in, and it always seemed too close to the board for me.

Q: What is/was the best part about competing? 

Getting to see your friends from different parts of the country. We kept in touch throughout the year, so reunions at competitions were always enjoyable.

Q: Who is your biggest cheerleader/support?

My teammates were always my biggest support system. We went through so much together, that we were able to recognize each other’s needs. You could always count on your teammates for a pep talk before trying something new.

Q: Who is your diving role model?

José Guerra, the Cuban Olympic platform diver.

Q: What are/were your long-term goals for diving? 

I got to reach my long-term goal with diving by going to Eastern Michigan University on a diving scholarship. It allowed me to share my experience with divers at different levels.

Q: Did you have a pre-competition routine? 

Diving is a very mentally challenging sport, so routines were a very prominent factor in my development. My routine involved a lot of modeling and visualization to connect and reaffirm the correct movements. By the time I was in university, I had routines specific to each direction, and a video of my dive to watch before I went up to compete it.

Q: Where are you in life now?

I am finishing up my fourth year of university at Eastern Michigan University.

Q: How has diving impacted your life?

Diving has been a part of my life for so long, that it is hard to imagine what it would be like without it. The time and effort that has gone into this sport has taught me so much about myself that I don’t think I would have found anywhere else. I got to experience different cultures when traveling for training camps and meet different people and learn about their experiences in the sport.

Q: What is one message you would share with younger divers?

Enjoy what you do and even your hardest days will be worth it.

Stay tuned for more Poolside Profiles!