Getting to Know: Iris Schmidbauer

Iris Schmidbauer
The up-and-coming German reveals all in this quirky interview

Following an impressive year as a wildcard in 2019, Iris Schmidbauer should have been enjoying her first season as a permanent Red Bull Cliff Diving athlete this summer. Unfortunately, we'll have to wait until next year to see the rising German star in action from the 21m platform, where she'll be one of the top 8 women competing at every stop.

For now, let's get to know the 25-year-old a little better with a selection of quickfire questions.

What scares a cliff diver? It's not heights for sure...
To get lost in a dive and to hurt myself!

What's your parents' attitude towards your dangerous passion?
They don't support me, but they also don't try to stop me.

Fill in the following phrase: A cliff diver automatically is also a...
Show maker.

Have you lost the ability to jump in the water like a 'normal' person?
No. Sometimes it's also fun just to jump and you can feel the tingling in the belly.

Could you do mental maths during a dive?
No. I would need to use a calculator to do maths.

What impresses more: Somebody who is able to perform one twist more, or someone who performs two somersaults less than you but in perfect execution?
Somebody who performs one twist more.

How high does a cliff have to be for you to say no?
Anything that is higher than I have to dive off in a completion. I like to stick with 20/21m.

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Iris is at her happiest on the 21m platform. Photo: Dean Treml/Red Bull Content Pool.

How high was the highest cliff you ever jumped from?
23m from a crane in Czech Republic.

At what age would you allow your children to jump off 27/21 metres?
When they are physically and mentally prepared - maybe 14/15 years for 21m and 16/17years for 27m.

If you weren't a cliff diver, what would you have become instead?
I would have studied medicine.

Who looks better doing a dive, the girls, or is it the boys?
The girls look more pretty, the boys look more impressive.

Is there a sport you really suck at?
All ball sports!

What would you want to be for a day? Why?
An astronaut. When I was young, I always wanted to achieve something extraordinary or be someone extraordinary. Astronauts were extraordinary and impressive to me and they still are. Also, I would love to see the earth from space.

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It might not be in space, but this job is pretty extraordinary too. Photo: Dean Treml/Red Bull Content Pool..

Your personal dream location (regardless of budget)
The Alps. (Da bin I Dahoam!)

What advice would you give your 10-year-old self?
When I was 10 years old, I didn't even know that there is a sport called diving yet. So I would advise myself to start with diving.

What would you say is true luxury?
Flying first class.

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This is our idea of first class flying. Photo: Romina Amato/Red Bull Content Pool.

Why cliff diving and not ballet?
I grew up next to a lake with a 10m platform, not next to a professional ballet studio. Anyway, cliff diving is cooler than ballet.

Have you ever used your talent to impress boys at the swimming pool? How did it work?
Yes, it's working pretty good.

Describe yourself in 3 words.
Dance monkey, determined, adventurous.

Your biggest weakness?
Not being able to give up.

Something you always wanted to do but never dared to so far (does not have to be dive-related)?
Skydiving.

What's the most important asset in cliff diving?
Bravery.

What's your main goal for next season?
Finish top 5.