Share Your Vision

Diver Underwater - Scuba Diver - School of Fish

It’s estimated that every two minutes, humanity takes more pictures than were taken in all of the 1800s. As of 2018, they say we shoot at least 1 trillion images annually – 2.7 billion daily or 1.9 million every minute, posting about 300 million daily.

As amazing as these numbers are, what I find more amazing is that just as these words found you amid the approximately 9-quadrillion-plus words humanity uses daily, the images you and I take as divers do not get lost amid the trillions of others taken. In fact, they are more visible than in the past.

This is because while image volume is skyrocketing, how we use imagery is expanding. Not that long ago, the average person shared crude (by modern standards) snaps as prints or a slideshow with a few friends, and relived memories now and again by flipping through them. Reaching more than a handful of people with stills or video was almost exclusively the domain of serious enthusiasts and professionals.

Scuba Diver Selfie - Women in Diving - Underwater Photography

But not anymore. Today we use mobile devices to capture about 90% of images, and imaging has grown into part of everyone’s communication. We all reach thousands-plus on social media. We can post in (or almost in) real time whenever we want, and our images transcend “pictures” because they’re messages sent to people with whom we have personal ties – that’s what gets your images (and words) through the staggering numbers to get seen, and it doesn’t end there. On the receiving end, your friends see them almost immediately and when they’re interesting and/or compelling, they broaden who you reach by reposting to others with whom they have personal ties. So, our imagery reaches more people, and it is more powerful because it is a universal communication that conveys our experiences, visions and perspectives across national borders and language barriers.

This is especially true for us divers. Thanks to its extraordinary ability to emotionally connect with the human experience of going into inner space, photography has always been close to the heart and soul of diving (the first underwater photos actually predate scuba). Today, divers easily snap images with color, sharpness and quality that the pros agonized to get in the 1960s and 70s. Applying these modern technologies to high end cameras and computer post-processing, today’s serious underwater shooters produce stills and video that were unimaginable, unimaginably difficult or even impossible two decades ago.

Crab - Underwater - Coral

All this means that whether you’re passionate about serious imagery, or just snapping casual shots (and we need both), your images have power. They can influence. You can use them to communicate with others about the oceans and underwater world at a time in history when it matters most.

Stills and video of coral, kelp forests and reef-wrecks show that the underwater world is beautiful, worth experiencing and worth saving – we need these, but our messages must be wider. Ugly, but important, shots of dead/broken coral, adrift plastic, a litter-strewn beach or a sea lion drowned in a ghost net remind people that we have some urgent, serious problems that threaten life on Earth. Divers in an AWARE underwater clean up, restoring coral and staging a save-the-sharks outreach show that divers care and are doing something about these problems. Before-during-after dive moments with buddies, video of an Advanced Open Water Diver student triumphantly mastering navigation, and shots of a physically challenged person, an elderly person and a youngster diving together show that diving forges friendships, teaches us about ourselves, and embraces everyone.

PADI Go Pro Evolution - Go Pro Contest - Underwater Photography

It’s often said that “a picture is worth a thousand words.” Whether it’s your mobile device, a mask-mounted GoPro or a pro-quality camera, as a diver your posted images can be worth more than that. The right image may be worth a thousand fewer kilos of plastic contaminating the seas. A thousand more sharks still alive. A thousand more divers shoulder-to-shoulder with us as the seas’ ambassadors and a force for good.

So please, shoot, post and share. The world needs to see what you and I see.

Dr. Drew Richardson
PADI President & CEO

PADI/GoPro Evolution Video Contest Kicks Off

Go Pro - PADI - Contest - Evolution Contest

PADI® is partnering with GoPro to present the three-part Evolution video contest series, which will run through October 2019. Whether it’s a sunken ship in your favorite quarry, an unforgettable turtle encounter or a freedive over a vivid reef, you and your divers have a shot at winning valuable prizes as you show off your video and editing skills. Best of all, the contests are a chance to increase your business by offering specialty courses and camera sales.

The CAPTURE contest, which is open for entries from 15April – 30May, asks divers, who are at least 18 years old, to simply capture an amazing underwater experience; the second contest, EDIT, is open 1 July – 15 August and tests your editing skills with a series of clips provided by GoPro; the final contest, CAPTURE/EDIT, opens 16 September – 31 October and requires you put everything together – capturing and editing – into one awesome story.

The three contests are open to everyone – amateurs and pros alike – and, beyond just being fun, offer incredible opportunities to boost your business:

  • Teach underwater photography. While divers can get tips on how to capture and edit amazing underwater footage from GoPro professionals, consider cross promoting the contest with a PADI Digital Underwater Photographer specialty course. Either offer the specialty on request, or schedule a handful of courses throughout the duration of the contest period (essentially, all of 2019). When selling the Digital Underwater Photographer specialty, point out to your divers that they’ll likely be able to shoot footage during the course that they can then enter in the contest!
  • Consider other specialties. Digital Underwater Photographer isn’t the only specialty you can promote – there are a number of great courses that tie in nicely not just with the contest, but with digital underwater photography as well. Peak Performance Buoyancy is an obvious tie-in because peak buoyancy makes underwater photography more rewarding; Fish Identification teaches divers to identify fish and understand fish behavior better; and, the Boat Diver and Wreck Diver specialties can get divers to environments they may not have dived before, for exciting new encounters. What’s more, if your divers take enough of these specialties, they’re on their way to PADI Master Scuba DiverTM.
  • Sell the hardware. Finally, take this opportunity to sell more GoPro cameras and accessories, or if you don’t currently sell GoPro, consider adding them to you inventory. Only videos shot on a GoPro can be entered into the Evolution contest, so what better way of promoting the sale of GoPro cameras and accessories than by featuring them right next to information about the contests!

Registrations are now open for the CAPTURE contest – Enter Here

To help you promote the PADI/GoPro Evolution contest to your divers, there is a full range of marketing collateral and resources on the PADI Pros’ Site. Happy shooting!

Register Your Event for PADI Women’s Dive Day 2019

PADI Women's Dive Day - Women Diving - Underwater Diver

It’s that time of year again! Be a part of the fifth annual PADI Women’s Dive Day on 20th July 2019.  PADI Women’s Dive Day was born of a desire to celebrate the incredible women in scuba diving, help close the unnecessary gender gap that still exists and encourage a more active female dive community to drive additional business for PADI Members.

So why not get your own PADI Women’s Dive Day event live and promoted well before the 20th July? Whether you plan a group dive, a learn to dive event, a picnic at the pool or something entirely of your own making, PADI Women’s Dive Day provides opportunities to meet new customers and build stronger relationships with your divers.

Register your event so that people can easily find it and join the festivities. You can also download a full range of promotional materials from the PADI Pros’ Site under the Marketing Toolbox section.

Register your event here

Contact your PADI Regional Manager or email marketing@padi.com.au if you have any questions.

PADI Instructor Examinations for March 2019

1-Mar-19 | Koh Phi Phi, Thailand

2-Mar-19 | Bali, Indonesia

2-Mar-19 | Nadi, Fiji

5-Mar-19 | Gili Islands, Indonesia

8-Mar-19 | Dumaguete, Philippines

8-Mar-19 | Kenting, Taiwan

10-Mar-19 | Koh Chang, Thailand

10-Mar-19 | Bangkok, Thailand

13-Mar-19 | Pattaya, Thailand

14-Mar-19 | El Nido, Philippines

15-Mar-19 | Goa, India

16-Mar-19 | Phuket, Thailand

16-Mar-19 | Lembongan, Indonesia

19-Mar-19 | Koh Tao, Thailand

20-Mar-19 | Manado, Indonesia

20-Mar-19 | Subic Bay, Philippines

20-Mar-19 | Cebu, Philippines

23-Mar-19 | Boracay, Philippines

23-Mar-19 | Phu Quoc, Vietnam

26-Mar-19 | Puerto Galera, Philippines

27-Mar-19 | Nha Trang, Vietnam

29-Mar-19 | Santander, Philippines

30-Mar-19 | Sydney, Australia

30-Mar-19 | Tioman Island, Malaysia

30-Mar-19 | Koh Lipe, Thailand

30-Mar-19 | Melbourne, Australia

10 Tips for PADI Instructors from the Quality Management Team

By Kim Ngan, Quality Management Consultant

This month we would like to share some terrific tips for new (and not so new) PADI Instructors.

1 – Use your PADI Cue cards

Ignoring your cue cards is a rookie’s mistake. Using a cue card does not make you less cool, but in fact it makes you look professional and well-prepared. The cue cards are made to support us to ensure we do not miss teaching any skills and we teach in the correct sequence. Further they assist us in presenting the performance requirements clearly which serves to assist us to teach the skill correctly and the student understand what they are expected to achieve.   

2 – Read your PADI Instructor manual – Don’t follow the crowd

Sometimes we question our understanding of PADI standards, don’t just listen to other instructors or follow the crowd, simply read your Instructor manual and find out the answer. The Instructor manual gives us guidance and reminds us what we should do and what we should not do. Thanks to today’s technology, we now have the PADI digital manual available in several languages so you may always find the latest version to download from the Pro Site.

3 – Read PADI’s Guide To Teaching

While the Instructor Manual lists required standards, PADI’s Guide to Teaching provides explanations, teaching techniques and suggested approaches to meet those standards. When preparing to teach a PADI course or program, particularly those you have never taught a course or don’t conduct courses on a regular basis, you will find the reminders in Guide to Teaching manual valuable in helping organize training sessions and dives. Be familiar with what information is in it will make it beneficial instructional tool and we can continue to use it throughout our teaching career.

4 – Keep a copy of Training Records

We should keep a copy of the training records, as they can play a key part in incidents and quality management situations. The training records prove the dive professional acted appropriately. Without them, it can be difficult to remember exact details of what happened. They are so important that we have will have another article later this year just about documentation. To download PADI training records go to your PADI pro account at PADI.com and download the forms under the section of Training essentials.

5 – Go onto the Pro site and utilize the resources

At the early stage of our diving career the primary reason for most of us to use the Pro site is to do a dive check or certify our student using the OPC. However the site offers much more than that.  Pro Site in fact is another powerful tool where PADI members can obtain a lot of different resources. Not only just the teaching tools or the marketing tools, but also tools for personal development. For examples, you may find out the dates and location for the next Instructor Update and sign up live Member Forums, seminars and webinars. You may also find the recordings if you have missed out any webinars. Pro Site also acts as a job finding platform for those who are looking for dive jobs around the world.  Check out the Risk Management recorded webinars as well: Pro development/BOD webinars/PADI Asia Pacific webinars. You will also find the Duty of Care, Guided dive and Rush Hour risk management videos at: 
Toolbox / Member / Quality Assurance – Duty of Care Resources.

6 – Have a set of digital manuals on your phone

We are in the Digital Age, most people have their own smartphone so there is no excuse not to have a set of digital manuals downloaded and be ready for your use if needed. One of the best things about your PADI digital manual is that they get updated regularly. PADI uploads the most up to the date version of the digital student manuals whenever it is available, so each time you refreshed your PADI library, the manuals in there will get automatically updated. You will be able to know what the students are reading and also have a better understanding of what they are going through.

7 – Attend LIVE member forum and Risk Management Seminars as much as possible

Have you attended any PADI live events yet? Do you know we have live Member forums and Risk Management Seminars in most region each year? Member forums bring us the Training Bulletin, a summary of the year and also what’s new in PADI. Risk Management seminars invites you to discuss trends in dive incidents and issues relevant to the safety or ourselves and our customers. These live events provide a great opportunity to meet other dive professionals and PADI staff.  It’s a great way to learn from each other!  

8 – Learn from a role model – Member of the Month and read the Undersea Journal

Wishing to find more tips and inspiration about how to become an outstanding PADI Instructor? Check out the winner of the Member of the Month on the Pro Site! It is one of the highest recognitions you can have as a PADI Instructor. The winner is selected from the extraordinary nominees from all around the globe. These PADI members are awesome role models. You may also find out more inspiring PADI members from the Undersea Journal in the section ‘Exceeding Expectations’. The UJ always features great stories of our PADI AmbassaDiver and all the articles there are written by experienced divers and PADI staff! There are plenty of places to look for great tips in leading divers and teaching great courses.

9 – Follow our E.A.P method to reduce Risk

Remember our first Surface Interval article and Webinar this year? We introduced a way to evaluate risk using a three-prong approach? It is calledEAP or – Environment- Activity- People.  To recap, we should always conduct an Environmental risk assessment as well as evaluate the type of the dives Activity itself, then assessing the People’s abilities and limitations. This helps us to use good judgement to make good decisions.

10 – Last but not least, talk to us!

We are here to help! Like you we are passionate about dive training and safety.  If you have any questions, just email us on qa@padi.com.au or pick up the phone and ring us on +61 2 9454 2888. We would love to hear from you!

Transform and Diversify Your Training Abilities

Dry Suit - Dry Suit Diver - Women Diving

Written by PADI Regional Training Consultant, Young Hee Simpson.

As PADI Professionals, we’re in the business of transformation. Being able to influence our customer’s lives is a great privilege and a rewarding responsibility. However, the lifestyle we choose is sometimes bound by environmental factors that we must adapt to; the location we’re living, diving and teaching in. Our responsibility is to educate our students to dive safely while enjoying diving in their local environment.

Luckily, we have equipment readily available that will help us overcome some environmental challenges, such as diving in colder water. When the water temperature drops, there is nothing better than donning your dry suit to help you stay warm underwater. As a PADI Pro, you might be diving more than three dives a day with potentially longer bottom times. Diving in a dry suit opens the door for additional dives and a longer dive season. For you as a dive professional, using a dry suit could be a tool to conduct additional courses that will create income opportunities while also providing access to local dive sites, year round, for your customers.

To teach the PADI Dry Suit Diver Specialty, you will need to gain the relevant instructor rating. To become PADI Dry Suit Diver Specialty Instructor, there are two ways; it is recommended you take a Dry Suit Diver Specialty Instructor Course with a PADI Course Director or you may apply directly to the PADI organisation. In addition to the PADI Dry Suit Diver Specialty Instructor rating, if you hold five specialty instructor ratings in total, you can also apply for the PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer rating, which denotes one of the highest membership ratings within the PADI system of diver education.

You can order related materials through the Online Shopping Cart or you can email your Regional Trainer Consultant at training-sales@padi.com.au with any questions.

Congratulations to our 2018 PADI Elite Instructor Award Recipients

With the New Year well under way, we would like to congratulate all our 2018 PADI Elite Instructor Award recipients. These PADI Elite Instructor Award recipients are our top certifying PADI Instructors who have received an Elite Instructor Award for issuing 50, 100, 150, 200 or more than 300 certifications throughout 2018.

The Elite Instructor Award distinguishes PADI professionals by highlighting their experience as PADI Members and gives them the means to promote their elite status to student divers, potential students, prospective employers and others. Elite Instructor Award recipients will receive an acknowledgement letter and recognition certificate (signed by PADI President and CEO Dr. Drew Richardson), a decal to add to their instructor cards, and an e-badge they may use on emails, websites, blogs and social media pages. Elite award instructors may authorize PADI Dive Centres or Resorts with which they associate, to display their Elite Instructor Award on the business’ digital site as well.

Want to see who achieved a PADI Elite Instructor Award in 2018? Check out the 2018 Elite Instructor Recipient List on the Pros Site. Listed PADI instructors can download their 2018 Elite Instructor e-badge and will be able to view their e-badge on their PADI Pro Check results page.

For more information including qualifying certifications, visit the PADI Elite Instructor Award page on the PADI Pros’ Site. To see your current certifications count, view your Students Count Report.

If you have any questions please contact customerservice.ap@padi.com

The PADI Business Management Program

PADI Business Management Program

The PADI Business Management Program (PBMP) encourages you to think critically and creatively about management practice. You will gain an all-round understanding of how dive businesses and managers should function in a domestic environment while also developing analytical, problem solving and strategic planning skills that are attractive within the dive industry. The PADI Business Management Program will equip PADI professionals with the core knowledge and skills necessary to operate a cutting edge PADI dive business.

Led by industry experts, and with interactive presentations ranging from pricing strategy to store layout and staff management, this is an essential program for PADI Dive Store stakeholders aiming to raise the bar and increase turnover and profit in 2019.

The PADI Business Management Program in Asia Pacific will include the below presentations in 2019.

Attracting loyal customers

  • Elements of a Successful Website
  • Social Media and Video

Closing a profitable sale

  • Staff Training
  • Selling at a Profit
  • Great Customer Service

 2019 PADI Business Management Program Schedule

Day Month Location Language
30 July Sydney, Australia English
28 August Auckland, New Zealand English
10 September Perth, Australia English

Bonus – Early Bird Offer & 4th Attendee Free

Register 6 weeks before the PBMP date for a special early bird discounted rate. Plus, receive the 4th ticket free with 3 paying attendees.

Dates and locations are subject to change, refer to the PADI Pros’ Site or contact your Regional Manager for the latest information.

If you have further questions please contact alison.hush@padi.com.auor your PADI Regional Manager.

Get to Know Your PADI Regional Managers

Although most of you talk regularly with your PADI Regional Manager, have you ever wanted to know more about them? We asked each of our PADI Regional Managers to answer some questions to help you get to know them a little better.

Chris Hailey – NZ & Fiji

Name: Chris Hailey

Region: New Zealand & Fiji – Region 22

OW Cert Location: Phuket

Number of Years Working in the Dive Industry: 8 years

Bucket List Dive Site: Galapagos and Socorro

Highest PADI Rating: Dive Against Debris Instructor Trainer

What do you love most about diving?: The beauty of a special place that few people have seen and then sharing that beauty with the world through photos and video.

Hans Ullrich – NT, QLD, PNG & Pacific Islands

Name: Hans Ullrich

Region: QLD, NT, PNG, Pacific Islands & French Polynesia – Region 23

OW Cert Location: Aruba

Number of Years Working in the Dive Industry: 29 years

Bucket List Dive Site: Freediving with Great Whites

Highest PADI Rating: Course Director

What do you love most about diving?: Your interaction with nature and the marine wildlife.

Damian Jones – NSW, ACT, VIC, SA, WA & TAS

Damian Jones - PADI Regional Manager

Name: Damian Jones

Region: NSW, ACT, VIC, SA, WA & TAS – Region 24

OW Cert Location: Melbourne, Victoria

Number of Years Working in the Dive Industry: 18 years

Bucket List Dive Site: Sardine Run, South Africa.

Highest PADI Rating: Course Director / Examiner

What do you love most about diving?: Seeing the big fish

Avoid the Trap

Cold Water Diver - Women in Diving - PADI DIver

Apart from medical issues, what do you think most causes or contributes to serious dive incidents? Gear failure? Conditions? Panic? No, while these can all be factors, thenumber one cause or contributor in serious accidents is bad decisions. When we make good choices and follow accepted diving practices, unpleasant experiences are very rare, even when the unexpected happens. But, studies show that when divers make poor decisions, the probability of injury, death or a close call goes up disproportionately.

This shouldn’t be surprising, but here’s the important detail: It’s rarely errors, but violations that cause or contribute to these incidents. In this context, an error is unintentionally straying from accepted practices, whereas a violation is deliberately doing so.

Rescue Diver - Boat Rescue - Flotation Rescue

In some dive incident reports, the violations are so extreme that we can only scratch our heads and ask, “What were they thinking?” But in others incidents, the violations are more understandable, at least in hindsight, and if we’re honest, we’ve all been there. It goes something like this: Pat Diver’s on a boat about to splash, and, wouldn’t you know it, Pat has left the emergency whistle normally always attached to the BCD, at home, next to the sink after washing it. Pat can even see it mentally.  A quick check finds no spares onboard . . . and that’s when Pat decides to dive anyway. We’re not going far, it’s flat calm, my buddy has one, there’s no current etc. . . . And, Pat probably gets away with it because in truth, on most dives you don’t need your whistle, and the same is true for other things, like your alternate air source. More often than not, predive checks don’t find problems and reserve gas never leaves your cylinder. Many accepted diving practices we follow on every dive (or should) prove unnecessary on most of our dives.

And that’s the trap. Since nothing bad happened, next time Pat forgets a whistle, or alternate or doesn’t want to bother with a predive check, Pat dives and gets away with it again. After a while, not having required gear, pushing limits, skipping checks etc. is Pat’s new MO.  Pat even begins to say things like “you just need it for training,” since nothing bad has happened after all of these dives, they must be unnecessary, right? (The human factors term for this is normalization of deviance. Logically, we know that eventually a whistle, alternate, reserve, predive check, etc. would make a big difference – maybe even a life-saving difference – and Pat has a bad day or worse. Problem is, it could be the next dive or next 200th; there’s no way to know.

Diver with Instructor - PADI Diver - Bahamas - Safety Skills

Thinking Differently

Since the trap is that violations seem reasonable in the moment, the solution is a different mindset. Thinking like divers (remember that from your PADI Advanced Open Water Diver course?), the mindset we want builds on the primary objective of every dive: for everyone to return safely. Then we:

Question the violation, not the dive practice. Violations assume that the dive practice is flawed under the circumstances. Because someone likely got hurt or died for us to learn a dive practice, and because there is usually no warning that this is the dive when it will keep us out of trouble, reject that assumption. The data show that violations are flawed, even if divers get away with them frequently.

Remove incentives. Many violations happen for convenience or not missing a dive, so have choices. Spare gear, reasonable time, alternative dive sites, etc. remove incentives. There’s no incentive to dive with a short fill if there’s full cylinder available. There’s no incentive to skip a proper predive check if there’s no rush to get in the water. There’s no incentive to dive in terrible conditions if there’s something else fun to do together.

Be firm. When we rationalize, it’s human nature to look for agreement, so we can help each other by politely not agreeing, ideally followed by a solution in keeping with accepted practices. “No, I disagree. Swimming back alone violates safe diving practices. How about this – we can all swim back together, then those who want to continue . . . “

PADI Diver - Underwater - Hand Signals

Be a role model. We’re less likely to violate safe diving practices when we dive with role model leaders and when we realize that we’re role models ourselves, whether we want to be or not. Role model divers continue their education, keep up with the latest data from sources like DAN, and keep first aid/CPR, Rescue Diver and oxygen skills current because they know that even without violations, incidents can still happen. As German theologian Albert Schweitzer said, “Setting an example is not the main thing in influencing others. It is the only thing.”

Dr. Drew Richardson
PADI President & CEO