Dive Ontario was able to interview Conor Burnett, an Aspire level diver, who trains at Optimal Diving Club, in Markham.

Conor is very motivated. He loves to compete and push his limits. Conor values his family and friends, who stand by him and support him in his journey to become the best diver he can be. Aside from diving, Conor loves to express his creativity through different mediums of art.

Please enjoy our interview with Conor!

At what age did you begin to dive?

10 years old.

What does diving mean to you?

Diving is one of the places where I feel happiest. When I learn a new skill, or I finally do a difficult dive perfectly the feeling is priceless.

Why did you start diving?

I was taking gymnastics and went to see the Pan Am games in Toronto and that got me interested, but then I found out about Optimal Diving through a friend, and right off the bat, I loved it.

What keeps you motivated?

During covid especially, knowing I have friends and people around me who believe in me really pushes me out of bed to try my best. It was hard on me at first, not have diving as that big part of my life and fell into a sort of depression, that’s when the people who I surrounded myself with helped the most. They gave me that reason to keep trying.

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

The biggest lessons I have learned are, pain is temporary, how to control my own fear and when something doesn’t go well, how to get back up and try again.

What is the best part about competing?

The best part of competing for me is being able to see where I stand compared to other people. It gives me the motivation to try harder and really do my best. I perform better when I’m trying to beat someone else so seeing what other people can do really motivates me to try harder.

Who is your biggest cheerleader/support?

My biggest support is my family and friends. They are always there and give me the strength to get past every obstacle and do my best whenever I compete.

Who is your diving role model?

My friend and teammate Victor Povzner is the person in diving I look up to most.

What are your long-term goals for diving?

My goal is to be the best diver I can be and not to look too far ahead. I’m always trying to build upon my personal accomplishments and push myself to always do better than before.

And now, a Poolside Personality speed-round!

Favourite book?

The Hunger Games is probably the book I enjoy the most.

Favourite season?

Fall is the best.

If you weren’t diving, what would you be doing?

I’d probably do something similar such as trampoline.

Favourite hobby?

I enjoy making all sorts of art and just anything creative is great because it allows me to express myself.

Stay tuned for more Poolside Profiles!