Freediving is one of the fastest growing dive industry segments and PADI Freediver courses provide members with new revenue-generating opportunities and offer a pipeline for capturing younger customers. To help seat the program, there are global instructor training courses along with efficient crossover programs for freediving instructors from other training organisations.
Alejandro Lemus, Underwater Explorer and PanAmerican Free Diving Champion says, “The PADI Freediver program offers high quality training and has the best value standards for both instructors and students. PADI will bring a new level of consciousness into the sport that we’ve never seen before.”
PADI is promoting the Freediver program through athletic endorsements and event sponsorships. Additionally, promotions tap into the adventure travel market to drive awareness and conversion. You should target your marketing efforts toward similar audiences.
Visit the Freediver Toolbox on the PADI Pros’ Site for promotional and marketing collateral, including:
Free webinars and courses
Website banners and buttons
PADI Retail and Resort Association Members should also check with their PADI Regional Headquarters for additional PADI Freediver promotional item availability.
Day one saw 3 Instructors and several PADI staff attend the PADI Freediver Instructor Orientation. We welcomed Adam Stern, Marlon Quinn and Clinton Laurence and look forward to having them onboard and running the PADI Freediver programmes.
Day 2 was the start of the PADI Freediver course and saw us starting in the classroom. Having already completed our PADI Freediving Touch, which includes the knowledge review and exam, it was as simple as completing paperwork and our quick review. Adam (our Instructor) then took us through some Freediving Equipment and we began some breathing exercise, learning how to prepare for breath hold.
After our classroom session we headed to the pool for our Confined Water session. We practiced 2 disciplines – Static Apnea (breathhold whist floating stationary on the surface) and Dynamic Apnea (breathhold whilst swimming horizontal). Everyone met the performance requirement, some doing so with ease whilst others needing a little assistance and encouragement from Adam who did an amazing job passing on his wealth of knowledge.
Day 2 saw us head off to Open Water for our 2 sessions. Here we practiced Free Immersion -(pulling down the line), Constant Weight (freediving down and up the line), duck diving, buddying up as a safety diver and finally performing freediving rescues.
PADI Regional Managers Jen Clent, Ian Cumming, Hans Ullrich and students Denzel, Mitch and Miah all had such positive things to say about the course materials, training and our amazing Instructor!
Here is what student Mitch had to say:
“I had so much fun during the course. Realising Freediving is so much more than holding your breath and diving for as long as you can. I learnt so much more than I thought I would, about techniques and relaxation, aswell as the physiological changes your body undergoes as it adapts to depth. It was interesting to see how much a psychological boost can effect your breath hold and depth with each attempt. It was so amazing how quickly everyone on the course improved, by following the techniques we had been taught in as little as 2 days!
Our instructor, Adam was so knowledgable and very good at relaxing each individual before each dive. He made sure everyone did their best, but made sure it was more about enjoying the dive than reaching a specific goal.
I feel Freediving has now become more of an addictive hobby for me, and am super keen to train more over the next couple of months so I can complete my PADI Avanced Freediving course”.
If you would like further information about teaching PADI Freediving or becoming a PADI Freediver check out PADI.com and listen to the recently recorded webinar or contact your PADI Regional Manager.
In part one I wrote about how to become more comfortable with selling equipment to your customers/students. In this blog, I am going to talk about the most important part of any sales, the demonstration. Imagine yourself buying a new or used car. Even though you might know what car you want, the salesman will do a show and tell by basically showing you all the ins and outs of that car. So now you know all about the accessories, colour availability, engine size, engine torque, warranty, safety etc. you are ready for the test drive. The salesman opens the passenger door to let you in and he is taking a seat behind the wheel. Of course, you think, he needs to drive it off the lot and once we are on the main road, I will then drive the car. But no, the salesman stays behind the wheel and while driving tells you all about the car, how it drives, feels, dash etc. After the test drive you return to the dealership and that was ‘your’ test drive.
Would you buy the car? Highly unlikely, as you did not get to do the test drive. Well, now back at the dive center where one of your customers is looking into buying a BCD. After the customer decided on a brand/model, you then take the same steps as that car sales person by showing the customer all the benefits of that BCD. Such as Lift capacity, adjustments, # of pockets, weight intergraded or not, stitching, quality and anything else that you know about that BCD that can and will benefit the customer. Now here comes the part that car salesman missed, letting YOU drive the car!
You assist the customer into the BCD and then you let the CUSTOMER do the driving. You let them fiddle with the waistband and make it fit properly. You let them adjust the shoulder straps and make it comfortable, you let them connect the LPI and inflate the BCD completely and even over inflate it so they feel and hear the over pressure valve work. HINT: have a scuba cylinder with a long LPI hose on the sales floor that you can use. Let them open and close the pockets/zippers and anything else that style BCD has. This will make them feel that the BCD is already theirs and it feels comfortable. Of course you need attach a scuba cylinder as well to make sure it really fits comfortably. Again, let the CUSTOMER put the BCD on the cylinder. In all of this, all you do is assist, and show the features of that particular BCD.
If they are not sure about the brand, style or fit, you assist them and repeat the process above. If you are uncomfortable doing a demo, practice with one of your colleagues or store manager. Also, the best people to show you all the benefits of any dive equipment are the manufacturer reps themselves. The store owner or manager can arrange for a manufacturer representative to come by and conduct a demo evening for the staff.
It’s pretty simple, all you need to do is put yourself in the shoes of your customer and think of what you would like when looking at purchasing dive equipment.
As PADI Regional Manager it’s always great to meet members all over my region. So many have been in this industry for a long time and their experience and knowledge is invaluable. The stories they have to tell about their life as PADI Pro’s could entertain divers for hours!
It was an absolute pleasure to recently present awards and certificates to the PADI Members below in New Zealand and Fiji. These PADI Professionals have invested at least 20 years into the dive industry.
It is a great part of the job where as Regional Manager I get to say thanks on behalf of PADI.
Once again we thank all PADI members for their contribution to the dive industry and wish everyone a fantastic year to come in 2016.
Christmas is quickly approaching and your customers will need to start planning presents for their friends and family.
Help them take the hassle out of gift shopping this holiday season. PADI has a range of options to gift divers with a special scuba present.
PADI eLearning Gift Pass – a great gift for learning to dive with PADI, recipients can take their next PADI course or even become a PADI Instructor. Elearning gift passes can be purchased at padi.com or PADI Pros can purchase them via the PADI Pros Site Shopping Cart.
PADI Touch Products – there’s something for everyone with PADI’s great range of Touch products. PADI Pros can purchase Touch products through the PADI Pros Site Shopping Cart. To help promote these products, go to the PADI Pros Site under ‘Toolbox – Marketing’; we’ve also released new toolkits for Equipment Specialist and ReActivate.
Certification Cards – an easy but meaningful present for divers, limited edition certification cards come in a range of designs featuring turtles, rays and clownfish. For ocean-lovers, you can promote the Project AWARE certification cards which include a $10 donation to the cause. PADI certification cards can be purchased at padi.com.
To help you advertise PADI products through your Dive Centre this holiday season, visit the PADI Pros Site under ‘Toolbox – Marketing’.
PADI will be celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2016. Over the past 50 years PADI Members have provided invaluable contributions to the aquatic realm, the dive industry and the PADI organization. As a PADI Member this milestone is your achievement – you truly are The Way the World Learns to Dive®.
The My PADI, My Ocean, My Hope video premiered at DEMA as part of the first anniversary initiatives and it can be viewed below.
PADI. The Way the World Learns to Dive. 1966-2016.