PADI Members go free to DIVE MENA Expo!

The DIVE MENA Expo

26th February -2nd March 2019

Dubai, UAE

Exclusive PADI Member Offer

Free access to the show if you’re a PADI member – just show your PADI card on entry!

The DIVE MENA Expo co-located with Dubai International Boat Show offers everything that a scuba diver can imagine – from the latest equipment on the market, product demonstrations and showcases, and talks from renowned speakers in the scuba diving field.

DIVE TRACKS

Dive Tracks will be a series of exciting talks led by diving experts that cover a complete range of topics for divers from diving with marine life, underwater photography, local dive spots for marine conservation and much more!

IMRAN AHMAD

An internationally known underwater photographer. He is known for his Experimental Photography with light and motion. Read more

ERNST VAN DER POLL

Ernst runs his own PADI Dive Center and swimming academy, where he teaches adaptive diving for people with life-changing injuries. Read more

CHRISTELLE HOLLER

Christelle has been involved in ocean conservation projects for many years working closely with Oceana, Conservation International and The International SeaKeepers Society. Read more

STRAP A TANK AND BREATHE!

Try out the new dive pool! Lead by Bermuda Diving who will cover training on basic scuba skills and introduce attendees to the joy of the underwater world.

FIND OUT MORE

Partners:

  

Dive Club Partners:

Emergency First Response Instructor Trainer Course Dates 2019

Are you looking to grow your EFR business? We are pleased to announce the EFR Instructor Trainer course schedule for 2019.

The EFR Instructor Trainer course prepares candidates to teach the EFR Instructor courses, both Primary and Secondary Care and Care for Children. It includes independent online learning followed by a live interactive knowledge development and practical day conducted on the dates shown below. This programme authorises successful candidates to market and conduct EFR Instructor courses, making it particularly beneficial for those with a focus on EFR business development, as well as those working within a PADI Instructor Development Center or involved in the PADI Instructor Development process.

Paris, France15 January 2019French
Düsseldorf, Germany19 January 2019German
Bristol, UK19 February 2019English
Warsaw, Poland28 February 2019Polish
Sliema, Malta09 March 2019English
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia09 March 2019Arabic/English
Mauritius14 March 2019English
Johannesburg, South Africa24 March 2019English
Athens, Greece31 March 2019English
Lisbon, Portugal31 March 2019Portuguese
Aiguablava, Spain14 April 2019Spanish
Hurghada, Egypt21 April 2019English
Dubai, United Arab Emirates29 April 2019English
Tenerife, Spain24 May 2019English
Lanzarote, Spain29 May 2019English
Stockholm, Sweden02 June 2019Scandinavian
Helsinki, Finland09 June 2019English
Copenhagen, Denmark16 June 2019Scandinavian
Bern, Switzerland16 June 2019German
Eindhoven, Netherlands23 June 2019English
Bristol, UK09 September 2019English
Dahab, Egypt16 September 2019English
St Raphael, France28 September 2019French
Cabo de Palos08 October 2019Spanish
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia12 October 2019Arabic
Lecco, Italy02 November 2019Italian
Bergen, Norway03 November 2019Scandinavian
Kuwait03 November 2019Arabic/English

Prerequisites to attend one of these events include:

  • EFR Primary / Secondary Care Instructor
  • EFR Care For Children Instructor
  • 25 EFR student course completions or conducted at least 5 separate EFR courses

You can register for a EFR Instructor Trainer course by completing and returning the EFR Instructor Trainer registration form – click to download the form now:
January to May – June to December

Leveling up from Divemaster to Instructor – What You Need to Know

January is a popular time to reflect on personal goals and hopes for the future. As a Divemaster, you may have thought about leveling up to PADI® Instructor. For some, it’s a foregone conclusion; for others, teaching people to scuba dive seems like a big step. Whether becoming a scuba instructor is at the top of your to-do list for 2019, or it’s your Plan B if you get tired of office life, here’s what you need to know:

The basics:
To enrol in a PADI Instructor Development Course (IDC) you must hold a Divemaster certification and be a certified diver for at least six months. Other requirements include:

  • Current training (within the past 24 months) in CPR and First Aid from Emergency First Response©, or other qualifying organisation
  • A medical statement signed by a physician within the last 12 months.

Before taking the instructor exam, you need:

  • 100 logged dives
  • A CPR and First Aid Instructor certification from EFR® (or other qualifying organisation). Most people take the EFR Instructor class in conjunction with the IDC.


Frequently asked questions


How long does the IDC take?
The minimum length of an IDC is five days, but most are a full week. Some programs take place over three consecutive weekends.

How much does it cost?
Prices vary depending on location. Generally speaking, the cost is similar to what you’d pay to become a yoga instructor, and cheaper than becoming a ski or snowboard instructor.  

What if I don’t have teaching experience?
The PADI system of education was designed to help people with no teaching experience become instructors. You probably didn’t have experience breathing underwater when you became a diver, right?

The IDC focuses on teaching people how to conduct in-water training sessions, present information to students, and provide feedback. Many PADI Instructors tell us the skills learnt during their IDC made them better, more confident communicators.

Is it worth it?
Helping people experience their first breath underwater is an indescribable feeling – ask any PADI Instructor. In addition, PADI Instructors are the most sought-after dive professionals in the world. The job board on the PADI Pros Site is filled with job openings around the world, and a PADI Instructor credential opens doors to a variety of careers.


I’m not sure I’m ready…
Going from Divemaster to instructor may seem like a big leap. But the reality is, your experience and training as a Divemaster has you well-prepared.

What are you waiting for?

According to one study, those who made a New Year’s Resolution were ten times more likely to achieve their goal than people who resolved to make a life change at other times of the year.
Whether you’re the sort of person who makes New Year’s resolutions or not, why not resolve to take the first step towards becoming a PADI scuba instructor?

Step one is easy, use the PADI Dive Shop Locator to contact an IDC Centre. If you’re not sure whether you might want to do your training locally or abroad, look at the PADI Pros employment board to see where the job opportunities are.

Something We All Need

In 2008, something happened to Leo Morales that most of us can’t even imagine – his leg was amputated to stop aggressive cancer. But what would be lifelong setback for some didn’t deter him. Already a passionate diver, Morales not only went back to diving, he became an instructor and a tec diver. Then he set two records (depth and distance) for divers with disabilities. Then he . . . well, he grew into an impressive and accomplished person by any standard: a PADI AmbassaDiver, Tedx presenter, author and inspiring mentor for hundreds – maybe thousands of people. Amazingly, Morales says that if he could change the past and keep his leg, that he would not. “Scuba diving gave me my life back,” he says. He actually took his life backusing scuba, leveraging it to do more and now gives back more than many would expect. Amazing.

It’s a moving story, but only one example that diving, beyond its force for healing the oceans, heals people – and there are more stories than you can count. Paraplegic at age 12 from transerve myelitis, after the discovering freedom and therapy scuba gave her, PADI Advanced Open Water Diver Cody Unser now uses scuba to help people living with paralysis, and participates in related research, through her First Step Foundation. Losing his legs in a combat zone, PADI Divemaster Chris Middleton, U.K. similarly found the healing power of scuba when he started diving with Deptherapy, and now works with Deptherapy to get more people involved.

And it’s not just physical healing. After serving in Iraq combat and discharged in 2014, US Marine Juan Gonzales had diagnosed Post Tramautic Stress Disorder (PTSD). It impeded having healthy connections with people – particularly his family – but discovered diving through WAVES (Wounded American Veterans Experience Scuba), which uses diving’s healing power to help veterans with physical or psychological wounds. Gonzales says the peace he experiences diving has been a major help in his battle with PTSD.

PADI Course Director Thomas Koch can’t hear, but with scuba, his “disability” turns into an advantage. Why? When his daughter Claire got her Junior Open Water Scuba Diver certification with PADI Course Director Cristina Zenato, they talked as fluently and as much as they always do – underwater, using American Sign Language.

There are hundreds of stories – miracles really – about how, through diving, people have helped, healed and comforted. There are literally hundreds of dive professionals and divers who serve divers with disabilities, and you bring honor and meaning to the dive community as a Force for Good.

But, the truth is, scuba’s healing power goes beyond this because everyone needs healing at times. The dynamics of life can often hurt. There are times when it feels like the weight of the world got dumped on your back. Maybe you can’t sleep and you’re not much fun to be around. Maybe the people you care about most don’t get to see your best, and yet they worry about you. And you see it in their eyes.

Then you go diving . . . and something wonderful happens. The worry world stays at the surface as you descend into the underwater world. Your mind clears. What’s really important can finally break through. Your buddy signals, “okay?” And for the first time in a long time, you really mean it when you reply, “okay!” Maybe it takes a couple of “doses” (dives), but you become you again. It reflects in the faces of those you care about.

My point is this. We share diving because it’s a wonderful experience that we’re passionate about, but we should also share it because it’s a restoring, healing experience. Some of us need it more than others, but that’s something we all need.

Wishing you the happiest New Year,

Dr. Drew Richardson
PADI President & CEO

Engagement and Productivity

Over the last decade and a half, “employee/work engagement” and “productivity” have risen as hot, linked buzzwords in the business community. Though definitions and measures of “higher productivity,” “better performance,” “lower turnover,” “better quality” and similar concepts differ, studies consistently find higher engagement correlated with them. Studies also find it correlated with a positive customer experiences. In other words, “engaged” workers do more, better.

What Does “Engagement” Mean?

Schaufeli (2013) acknowledges that “work engagement” and “employee engagement” are used interchangeably, but they have slightly different meanings. Simplified, “work engagement” may be defined as being mentally and emotionally connected to work goals and performance in a manner that motivates the person to further both, beyond expected minimums. “Employee engagement” is work engagement, plus an emotional commitment to the organization for or within which the person works that motivates furthering the organization’s reputation and interests beyond expected minimums. It’s important to note that “engagement” is not “satisfaction,” “happiness,” or “workaholism,” which can be high without engagement.

Rising Importance

Measuring individual worker productivity is increasingly difficult as “knowledge-based” services make up more of the economy. In many countries, as many as half of all workers create and use intellectual property rather than physical property, making conventional productivity measuring methods obsolete and unreliable. Impraise, a management software company, notes that “knowledge-based employees simply can’t be measured by the output of their productivity.”

Engagement behaviors, however, can be observed and measured, and their effects can be seen on the bottom line. For this reason, more and more businesses concern themselves with encouraging and measuring engagement behaviors and overall results.

The Takeaways

Much of the dive industry falls in the knowledge/service domain, making engagement central to increasing and sustaining productivity. Creating engagement is complex, with entire courses on how to do so, but experts seem to agree on a few common themes:

  1. Communicate regularly and personally. Frequent one-on-one communication with the dive operation manager/owner should increase engagement. Focus on purpose and how each person’s purpose fits in with it. They also need to know and see specifically how their efforts make a difference.
  2. Quality is often more important than quantity. This especially includes instruction. Beyond the more important safety issues, well-trained divers are more likely to invest in gear, travel and more training, and more likely to refer friends. So, training fewer divers well in a given time is likely more productive from a business perspective than training more divers poorly in the same interval.
  3. Dive businesses thrive on customer experience. Diving is all about customer experience, especially in training and travel. Engagement and customer experience tend to go hand in hand. Engaged employees and instructional staff have a passion for what they do and with whom they work that contributes to this.
  4. Trust. Knowledge-economy workers need relative autonomy and responsibility for managing their own productivity. This doesn’t mean ignoring what dive center staff does, but providing guidance and goals that allows them to get their work done without micromanagement.
  5. Results over effort. Recognize when people work hard and for long hours, but for most tasks focus on doing the right things well over simply staying busy. Reward innovation that saves money/time, expands services or improves customer experiences.

Adapted from the 4th Quarter 2018 edition of The Undersea Journal®, written by Karl Shreeves.

Dry Suit Diving Safety Tips

Written by DAN Staff

In the Northern Hemisphere, temperatures are dropping as winter approaches and for many locations that means it’s time for dry suit diving courses to start. Dry suits are excellent exposure protection for comfort and safety. They provide warmth, redundant buoyancy and the ability to get in the water all year long, but they come with some specific safety concerns. Brush up on the hazards so you can better prepare your students for cool water diving.

Constriction Concerns

Tight wrist and neck seals aren’t just uncomfortable, they can cause real problems for divers. Neck and wrist seals should fit snugly but should not restrict blood flow. Wrist seals that are too tight can cause pain in the fingers and hands as well as numbness, tingling and loss of dexterity. They can also increase the risk of a cold injury due to decreased feeling and blood flow.

Tight neck seals have the potential to induce carotid sinus reflex. This reflex slows the diver’s heartbeat and the flow of blood to the brain and can make the diver feel dizzy or lightheaded or lose consciousness if left unchecked. You’ll size your student’s wrist and neck seals during a class, but double check them when you get to the dive site. Changes in temperature, position or stress can cause minor swelling and make a seal tight enough to cause a problem. Make sure seals are trimmed and stretched to the appropriate size before getting in the water.

Dermatological Concerns

There are many causes of diving-related skin conditions, and some of them have the potential to mask more serious concerns. This is the case with many dry suit-related dermatological issues. New divers who fail to add gas to their dry suits as they descend and experience a squeeze may get rashes, chafing or bruises as a result. While uncomfortable, these typically have no lasting ill effects. These bruises can be dramatic, however, and sometimes resemble cutaneous DCS, also known as skin bends. If one of your students appears to have bruises after a dry suit dive, always consider the possibility of DCS and respond based on the apparent symptoms (or lack thereof). Early recognition of skin bends is important and can significantly increase the likelihood of a positive outcome for an injured diver.

Urological Concerns

Urination systems are not common in many dry suits, especially rental suits,  because of hygiene concerns. However, if your student divers own suits with urination systems, it’s a good idea to teach them how to properly use the system. Pneumaturia (the passage of air during urination), urogenital infections and catheter squeeze can be caused by improper equalization or maintenance of these systems. Covering system-specific equalization, using balanced systems with one-way check valves to prevent water ingress, and covering thorough and regular cleanings as part of hygienic equipment use are critical parts of instruction.

In Celebration of the PADI Divemaster

A good divemaster is the PADI System’s “secret weapon.”

The PADI® System of diver education is built upon a foundation of learning and applying safe diving for fun and exploration. It is this system that makes PADI Pros the most sought-after professionals in the scuba diving space. While many divers may not fully appreciate the significance of the PADI Divemaster, PADI Instructors, Dive Centers and Resorts do because certified assistants are integral to the PADI System. Divemasters are a key component that allows other parts of the system to move freely and function at full capacity, working toward optimal safety and education to enhance fun and adventure.

The role of the PADI Divemaster can’t be underestimated. Divemasters are often the conduit between student divers and instructors. Sometimes students find themselves struggling with particular cognitive or motor skills. Instead of risking looking foolish in front of the instructor, reaching out to the dive master for help creates a strong bond of trust. A diver may look for assistance in mastering the physics of diving, overcoming an inwater skill, making the best equipment purchase choice, figuring out how to get to the dive site or whether to bring sunscreen. The divemaster can become the source of all kinds of dive knowledge for that diver.

What is a divemaster’s value to an instructor and dive center? From the PADI Instructor’s perspective, a good divemaster is like the best birthday present ever. Someone who anticipates needs, shares the course planning and execution load, communicates effectively and empathically with divers and works independently when needed, a divemaster is a trusted second-in-command whose presence can help ultimately contribute to effectively conducting PADI courses.

For the dive center, a good PADI Divemaster can be the store’s secret weapon; its USP (unique selling proposition) that drives repeat business. Happy customers are often repeat customers, and repeat customers translate to increased revenue. PADI Divemasters are the most versatile of creatures who may be found filling cylinders, preparing a site briefing and assisting on a training dive that morning. In the afternoon they may be out guiding certified divers or coordinating a Dive Against Debris® survey. (Does this sound like you?)

The breadth of knowledge and skills needed to become and remain a competent PADI Divemaster can’t be overstated. Everything learned and experienced at this professional level forms the foundation of the PADI Instructor you may aspire to soon become.

Earning the prized title of PADI Divemaster is pretty awesome, with much kudos attached to it, and you’ll want to hang on to it. Do this by staying current. Renew your membership each year. Read all published training and standards updates. Go to live Member Forums and network with other PADI Pros. Look for opportunities to practice and further develop your knowledge and skills. Take PADI specialty courses. You never know where or when you’ll be called upon to use your divemaster knowledge and skills, so always be ready.

Be Best. Be PADI℠.

Customer Service and PADI Standards

There are times when complaints come into PADI that are more about customer service issues than clear violations of PADI Standards. The PADI Quality Management team won’t tell PADI Members how to run their businesses but will get involved when a member’s practices fall within the parameters of PADI Standards, including those found in the PADI Member Code of Practice (found in the first section of your PADI Instructor Manual).

Here’s a review of a few common customer service complaints, along with tips to help you avoid disappointing your customers and hearing from the Quality Management team:

  1. Customers express concern and frustration when planned dives are changed at the last minute to very different sites than those initially advertised. For example, the dive was scheduled for a shallow reef, but en route the boat captain tells customers they’re going to a deep site with more challenging conditions because one buddy team, or worse, a crew member, requested it.

In the Member Code of Practice, you are required to comply with the intent of safe diving practices, consider individual comfort levels and err on the side of safety. Divers who are prepared and comfortable doing a shallow reef dive may not be ready for a deep, challenging dive. If you must change sites, make an effort to choose alternate sites with dive profiles and features similar to the initially planned dives.

  1. Another common complaint from student and certified divers alike is concern about rental equipment provided to them. For example, divers describe ill-fitting BCDs, wetsuits that are either too small or too large or a leaky alternate air source.

PADI Members have an obligation to put diver safety first. Providing a student diver or novice with ill-fitting equipment, or worse, equipment that isn’t functioning properly is inconsistent with this obligation.

Proper equipment maintenance is paramount to diver safety, customer satisfaction and risk management. Enhance your customer service by asking customers if they’re familiar with and comfortable using the provided equipment. Showing your concern for the diver’s safety and enjoyment is both prudent and good business practice.

  1. Customer refunds are a common customer service issue. For example, a customer complains that a “three-week” Rescue Diver course is only partially complete after three months due to continuous rescheduling on the instructor’s part. The customer asks for a referral and the instructor refuses without explanation.

Remember that PADI Standards require you to issue a referral if the student diver completed at least one segment of the course and has met agreed-upon financial arrangements.

The best way to avoid customer service and quality management issues is to apply good judgment when providing dive services and to be diligent about maintaining professional business practices.

PADI Regional Headquarters opening times over the 2018 holiday period

The PADI EMEA Regional Headquarters at Bristol will be operating between Christmas and New Year. Please find below the dates and times of opening:

24th December – Phones are open 08:15 – 13:00

25th December – EMEA Office Closed

26th December – EMEA Office Closed

27th December – Phones are open 08:15 – 17:30

28th December – Phones are open 08:15 – 16:00

31st December – Phones are open 08:15 – 13:00

1st January – EMEA Office Closed

Hours resume back to the usual working hours of 08:15 – 17:30 as of Wednesday 2nd January 2019.

Get yourself covered all year round, worldwide

As a PADI Professional, it is critical that you can get on with what you do best. Teach students the world’s most popular dive curriculum, show them the wonders of the ocean, and transform their lives. To help you do this, PADI has teamed up with Divers Alert Network Europe (DAN Europe) to offer PADI endorsed professional liability, personal accident insurance and FREE dive accident cover for an unlimited number of your students so you can have peace of mind while you teach.

Maintaining current liability insurance is not only good risk management but PADI Pros working within the PADI Europe, Middle East and Africa territory may need to carry professional liability insurance to remain in PADI Teaching/Active status.

As a PADI dive professional, you’re a champion of safety working on the front lines every day to protect the divers in your care. The PADI endorsed DAN Europe insurance program provides PADI Pros access to risk-mitigation and safety programs to protect both divers and dive professionals.

Features of PADI endorsed DAN Europe insurance program

    • Personal accident cover for diving emergencies that is valid all year round, worldwide
    • Access to the renowned DAN specialised multilingual hotline, 24/7
    • Unlimited cover in case of hyperbaric treatment and repatriation
    • Travel insurance provided for non-diving medical emergencies abroad
    • € 4,000,000 professional liability cover, including legal defence, per occurrence
    • EXCLUSIVE PADI FEATUREFREE dive accident insurance for an UNLIMITED number of your dive students up to PADI Advanced Open Water Diver (AOWD) and PADI Advanced Freediver level*

In addition:

    • Members benefit from specialized consultancy services from the DAN Legal Network, so you have access to a worldwide network of legal experts and lawyers who are knowledgeable in diving-related disputes

Exclusive pricing for PADI Pros – Get Pro Silver for the price of Pro Bronze!

PADI Pros get access to discounted DAN Europe insurance plans receiving Pro Silver coverage for the price of Pro Bronze!

Sign up for the PADI endorsed DAN insurance program today

 

*The dive accident cover for an unlimited number of YOUR dive students is for the following PADI courses: Discover Scuba Diving, Open Water Diver, Advanced Open Water Diver, Basic Freediver, Freediver and Advanced Freediver.

Student dive accident cover includes:

  • Alarm Centre and management of medical emergencies 24/7
  • Worldwide emergency medical treatment & medical evacuation (€15,000,00)
  • Search & rescue of the missing diver (€ 2,500,00)