HYPOXIA founder Rob Pierce traces the brand’s roots to a dusty high school basement in Moanalua, Hawai’i circa the late 1990s. Huddled for hours over a rusting, single-color silk-screen station he slowly refined a stubborn passion for crafting ocean-themed apparel one blank t-shirt at a time. For the first few years beach vendors in Waikiki and the Aloha Stadium Swap Meet were the only distribution channel those early designs would ever see, but the seeds had been planted and hints of something greater slowly germinated.
Rob spent the formative years of his life diving the pristine waters of Hawai’i, Lake Michigan, the Mediterranean Sea and the US East Coast, and drew inspiration from each when developing the aesthetic of what would formally emerge in 2009 as HYPOXIA. With the growing rise in popularity of spearfishing, and with “freediving” entering the common lexicon, he set his sights on molding his one-time personal hobby into a community-built brand dedicated to the promotion of safety awareness and sustainability.
HYPOXIA was founded on three guiding principles:
- Safety Advocacy
- Sustainable Harvest
- ‘Ohana (Family)
It’s our primary mission first and foremost to promote all of the amazing communities worldwide that thrive around the love of subsurface adventure.
As of 2021 HYPOXIA annually sponsors 50+ events and tournaments worldwide and works directly with more than 100 professional freediving instructors to make our sports safer.
We’re often told that our shirts are the softest, most comfortable threads on the planet. And… that’s pretty much what we were going for. When we started out we used whatever we could get our hands on, just like every other basement operation, because it was cheap and the only way not to go broke. Nowadays we use some of the most expensive materials in the industry, because we value quality and comfort over profit. We started HYPOXIA because we wanted cool, comfortable clothing that represented our lifestyle and we’ve spent the last 10 years scouring the Earth for the finest components to keep that a reality. This is craftsmanship. If you’re ever not happy with your purchase, simply send it back and we’ll get you a refund. But we’re pretty sure you’ll be blown away.