Women’s Dive Day – Interviews with Leading Women in Diving – Nicole Detry

thPADI is proud to present the inaugural PADI Women’s Dive Day on 18 July 2015, a special day to get women together, in the water and involved in diving. With numerous events being hosted around the world, the goal is to get as many women as possible, at every level, diving on the same day in order to build awareness and interest for the sport. PADI Regional Manager Jonas Samuelsson decided to interview leading women in the dive industry during the month leading up to the Women’s Dive Day. PADI Examiner Nicole Detry sharing from her successful career in diving.

When and how did you start diving?

I started in 1977, in Belgium, with the Belgian CMAS federation. At that time there were not so many women diving, it was a bit military system and I though from the beginning that diving could be teach another way, more fun and enjoyable

IE HRG DEC 2013Current position in diving?

PADI Instructor Examiner

What you find the most exciting about diving?

  • First the aquatic environment. I just love being in the water. I can hang around for hours (when water is warm …) even if nothing is happening, enjoying neutral buoyancy, no noise, or the opposite challenging conditions, strong current, rough sea, excitement of big animals as shark, manta ray or dolphins, etc.
  • Second is people. With diving you meet so many different kinds of people, from different countries, different back ground, different mentalities, young, old, etc. – but all passionate with diving and the aquatic world.

Tips to someone who is thinking about a career in diving?

Love it – try different things – keep learning – keep it fun

IE Mechelen_GP_ND_06.15Favourite part of working in diving?

Teaching and sharing with others the passion you have for diving.

Any dream dive you aspire to?

Diving Galapagos together with a backpacking trip in Equator

What would your next diving course be?

I just completed the Rebreather courses – and loved it to be back to learning and practicing again as a “student”

Attributes that makes someone more successful in the diving industry?

Enthusiasm and the love to share experiences

Reabreather_ND_2014Best moment in diving?

In the 90’s, Ras Mohamed – Shark Reef – after fitting against the current around shark reef with a big group of Italian divers from Bergamo, arriving at the drop of, and hovering in the blue with hundreds of snappers, jackfish’s and barracudas, than a grey shark coming from the deep toward us. So much excitement – everyone so happy and kissing each other under water. The celebration kept going on the whole way back on the boat toward Naama Bay.

What is the next step in your career?

I love what I do and want to keep going as Examiner.

Thank you so much for the time. Looking forward to see you in Egypt in August. 

Thank you and see you soon,

How to Buy and Sell PADI Touch Products

0415 Digital Product Offer Email Header

The PADI Touch products are a collection of industry-leading digital course materials designed to modernise and enrich the teaching and learning experiences of PADI Professionals and their students. The range includes:

  • PADI Open Water Diver Touch
  • PADI ReActivate Touch
  • PADI Equipment Specialist Touch
  • …plus additional courses due for release in the future

Available for iOS and Android devices, the benefits range from improved customers’ satisfaction, enriched learning experiences and environmental awareness. In short, it’s the new way the world learns to dive.

Make sure you’re ready to hit the ground running once choosing to Go Digital – download our handy cheat sheet below which features an at-a-glance walkthrough of how you are able to purchase the PADI Touch Products, process the codes and sell these digital materials on to your students.


Click here to download the guide on how to buy and sell PADI Touch products

To purchase or learn more about the PADI Touch range, contact your PADI Sales Consultant at [email protected] or +44 (0) 117 3007234 during business hours. You can also visit the PADI e-Shop via the PADI Pro’s Site to place orders 24/7, 365 days a year.

Women’s Dive Day – Interviews with Leading Women in Diving – Annelie Lövgren

PADI is proud to present the inaugural PADI Women’s Dive Day on 18 July 2015, a special day to get women together, in the water and involved in diving. With numerous events being hosted around the world, the goal is to get as many women as possible, at every level, diving on the same day in order to build awareness and interest for the sport. PADI Regional Manager Jonas Samuelsson decided to interview leading women in the dive industry during the month leading up to the Women’s Dive Day. PADI Course Director and PADI Examiner Annelie Lövgren is sharing her experiences working in the dive industry.

ANNELIEWhen and how did you start diving?

I started diving during the fall in 1991 in Sweden, I remember it as very cold, well, diving in Sweden with a wetsuit that was common back then certainly was cold and the snowy weather didn’t help while on land. Guess something still was intriguing enough for me to continue. A couple of months later I went diving in the Caribbean Islands and then it all changed, a colourful and rich marine life, the lifestyle of the dives pro’s, the atmosphere around the diving, since then diving is a hugh part of my life. I set the goal of working as a pro in Thailand where I did my divemastercourse in 1997 and since then I have been working with diving fulltime during most of years until 2011. Now I still work with diving but parttime and will continue with that as long as it is fun (forever that is).

1235308_10153158715170167_1617656554_nCurrent position in diving?

I work as freelance Course Director in Sweden and as PADI Instructor Examiner in the other Nordic countries.

What you find the most exciting about diving?

For my own fun diving I love finding all those strange creatures, I can spend hours watching their behaviors and taking pictures.

Tips to someone who is thinking about a career in diving?

Think of it with a little professional attitude from the start, like you would with other things in life, think it through, what is your goal (working in sunny location all year, special interests like becoming tech instructor etc), where are you today and where do you want to be in 5 years. Set your milestones on the way to reach your goal, don’t give yourself limitations based on you can and know today, you will develop during your journey. And as any diver, adjust the plan if needed. I don’t have to tell you remember to have fun and dive a lot, that part is inescapable.

ANNELIE 2Favourite part of working in diving?

It always the moment when your students achieve something they didn’t think they could and that moment is every course you teach, from a Discover Scuba Dive to Instructor.

Any dream dive you aspire to?

There are still so many things I want to see and experience but a dive with big schools of hammerheads in the Galapagos are high my list now, oh, and sealions, I would love that, and the gorgeous dragon seahorses in Australia, that would be a true dreamdive for me and, no I can go on and on forever here I think J

What would the next course in diving be?

That will be sidemount, hopefully later this year. That’s one of the great things with diving, there is always something more to learn.

969848_599265543445497_1952987528_nAttributes that makes you more successful in diving?

The things that are the software in this business, your attitude and willingness to learn and do other things besides the diving, like handling social media for example. A really good thing is also your language skills, the more languages you know the easier it will be for you and get the job you dream of.

Best moment in diving?

That would be any moment on a vacation diving with friends since way back, when you know each other so well that signs feels no longer needed, these are just the happiest moments in life, charing the same passion of diving and marine life with your friends is a fantastic thing.

 11745659_10154126527023298_2253942505179005986_nWhat is the next step in your career?

That I don’t know yet, but I do know I will continue to learn and develop.

Thank you so much for sharing ideas from your successful career in diving. I am looking forward to see you next time i visit Sweden.

Happy to share. See you in Sweden.


Women’s Dive Day – Interviews with Leading Women in Diving – Anna Schmitt

5481_nPADI is proud to present the inaugural PADI Women’s Dive Day on 18 July 2015, a special day to get women together, in the water and involved in diving. With numerous events being hosted around the world, the goal is to get as many women as possible, at every level, diving on the same day in order to build awareness and interest for the sport. PADI Regional Manager Jonas Samuelsson decided to interview leading women in the dive industry during the month leading up to the Women’s Dive Day. Next is Anna Schmitt, PADI Course Director and co-owner of Panorama Divers Hurghada.

When and how did you start diving?

I never considered diving in Russia due to quite short summers and cold water. The Red Sea was the total opposite of it! In 2009 I just came on holiday to the Red Sea and walking around Hurghada my friend convinced me to try diving.  We found a diving centre, which ultimately changed my life. From the first moment breathing under the water I knew that this would be a life changing experience, a new me was born. When I started the OWD course I knew that I would go further and 6 months later I became a Divemaster, taking the first step in my professional career.

01606_nCurrent position in diving?

I am a PADI Course Director and Training Manager at Panorama Divers Hurghada.

What you find the most exciting about diving?

Diving for me is the easiest way to experience another world without leaving our planet. Any time when I have the opportunity to take divers into the blue I am so excited.  To be able to share the endless space of the ocean is so exhilarating.

7276_nTips to someone who is thinking about a career in diving?

I believe the most important attributes for building a career in diving are:

  • Attitude – you can’t be a mentor and a role model without it. An experienced instructor with a bad attitude is far worse than an inexperienced new instructor with the right attitude.
  • Open mindedness – learn, always learn everywhere and from everybody: other instructors and from your students.
  • Environmental awareness – we should never forget that we are only guests in the underwater world, it doesn’t matter where we are, in the lake or in the ocean, respect is a priority.

Favourite part of working in diving?

Favourite part of working in diving for me is developing the awareness and attitude of students regardless of their levels.  When you see the result of it in real diving situations, when students or DM, Instructor candidates are taking the right decisions on their own – it is really rewarding.

01606_nAny dream dive you aspire to?

I would love to find time and go to Indonesia to concentrate on macrophotography for which I have a real passion. On the flip side I still haven’t had the privilege of diving with whales. This would be a dream dive for me.

What would the next course in diving be?

If you asked me this question few months ago, I would tell you that it is a CDTC. I became a PADI Course Director this June in Punta Cana, which is the biggest achievement for me in the last years. It was really exiting experience. Now, having reached this level the next goal is to continue the technical side of my diving career.

75684_nAttributes that makes you more successful in diving?

The list of attributes is always growing: patience, communication skills, energy, enthusiasm, attention to detail etc. I’m always working on my diving and teaching skills and approach techniques. It ‘s a never ending process. I am extremely demanding of myself, I set my personal expectations very high. Success is not an option it is my daily goal.

Best moment in diving?

So many of them! Something that you don’t expect here and now – that is a best moment. One of the most memorable moments was inside a big school of fish with my Poseidon Rebreather, I really felt at one with the ocean.

45500_nWhat is the next step in your career?

To begin with to become PADI CCR Instructor Trainer. CDTC is behind now, so the next step for me is to bring Panorama Divers to CDC level. Our team goal is to develop the east European market and have a stronger presence in the Polish, Czech, Russian and French IDC & Pro segment.

Thank you so much for your time. I am looking forward to see you in Hurghada in August.

Happy to inspire anyone who seeks a career in diving – each day i am happy to go to ‘work’ so I am very lucky. Please contact me and i can explain more about the steps needed to make a successful career in diving. See you in August.

New and Upgraded PADI Businesses – June 2015

New PADI Businesses

This June, PADI has welcomed 21 new centres as members of the PADI Retailer and Resort Associations, and processed 6 membership upgrades for businesses achieving new awards or committing 100% to PADI as Five Star or Instructor Development centres.

New PADI Businesses

  •    Scubandros, s24867, Greece
  •    Octopus Diving, s24889, Spain
  •    Norway Dive, s24888, Spain
  •    Blue Ocean Divers, s24900, Denmark
  •    Nautilus Dive Center, s24903, Greece
  •    Itouch Blue Diving Centre, s24901, Maldives
  •    Diving Academy, s24912, Lithuania
  •    Wonderful Dive, s24877, Egypt
  •    Wonderful Dive, s24907, Egypt
  •    Dyk Fyn ApS, s24915, Denmark
  •    Buceo La Restinga, s24920, Canary Islands
  •    BlueDaloo Diving School, s24921, Italy
  •    Ocean Addicts, s24923, Spain
  •    Excel Scuba Tenerife, s24924, Canary Islands
  •    Northdiving Lanzarote, s24925, Canary Islands
  •    SeaOman Dive Academy Muscat – The Wave Marina, s24847, Oman
  •    Kyrenia Scuba, s24930, Cyprus
  •    diveOceanus Royal Island, s24866, Maldives
  •    Mediterranean View Diving Center, s24936, Greece
  •    AquaPlus, s24882, Germany
  •    Dive Systems Romania, s24934, Romania

Upgraded PADI Businesses

  • Espiritu de Buceo, s24642, Spain
  • Dive Atlantis, s22709, UAE
  • Scubamaster Co, s35552, Bahrain
  • Buceo Carboneras, s798359, Spain
  • Emirates Divers Centre, s22322, UAE

Awards Achieved

  • Lanzarote Dive Centre, s23813, Canary Islands – TecRec Award

Welcome and congratulations to all new and upgraded PADI businesses! For the latest list of new and upgrading members click the ‘New PADI Retailer and Resort Members‘ link.

New Sales Product – PADI Hammerhead Shark Phone Covers

PADI sales are pleased to announce the launch of a highly desirable new range of phone covers featuring an exclusive PADI Hammerhead Shark design.

PADI Tattoo Phone Case

The phone covers are available for iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, Samsung Galaxy S5, Samsung Galaxy S6.

Member level pricing:

Level 2 £4.50 / EUR 5.50

Level 3-4 £3.50 / EUR 4.50

Level 5 £3.00 / EUR 4.00

Product Codes:

85170 Shark Phone Case iPhone 6

85171 Shark Phone Case iPhone 6 Plus

85172 Shark Phone Case Samsung Galaxy S5

85173 Shark Phone Case Samsung Galaxy S6

The new phone cover range joins the existing portfolio of PADI branded merchandise products available to PADI Members for personal, business and re-sale purposes.

Place your orders for branded merchandise 24/7, 365 days a year by using the PADI e-Shop via the PADI Pros’ Site, or contact your local Sales Consultant at [email protected] or +44 (0) 117 3007234 during business hours.

New Replacement Card Series Features Moments Only Divers Get to Experience

PADI has teamed up with underwater photographer David Valencia to create a stunning new series of certification cards. The Blue Water Series by David Valencia limited-edition replacement cards showcase three incredible interactions between divers and the planet’s most majestic creatures.

“Through these moments and images it is my hope that people may discover or rediscover our deep connection with the ocean,” says Valencia, a PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer. “This connection is necessary in compelling those to preserve this important environment for generations to come.” Valencia shares the stories behind these photos.

Replacement Card blog 1

Humpback Whale and Diver, Roca Partida, Mexico Humpback whales arrive each winter in the waters of Baja and southern Mexico. At the isolated dive site of Roca Partida, an oceanic pinnacle of the Socorro Islands, humpback whale interactions have increased over the past few years. At the beginning of one of our dives, a female humpback dived down to us and rested in front of the group. She hovered there, motionless, except for her giant pectoral fins that sculled back and forth. Her giant eye watched us as we found a respectful distance. Observing a living being as large as a submarine underwater is an experience difficult to express in words. She stayed with us for about 25 minutes and then floated to the surface tail first, seemingly playing. She took a few breaths and dived back down to the group. The divers came up beaming – it was the most amazing experience of their lives.

Replacement Card blog 2Schooling Jacks, Cabo Pulmo National Marine Park, Mexico Cabo Pulmo is a National Marine Park located 112 kilometres/70 miles northeast of Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Cabo Pulmo has become a source of pride for this small community, and all of Mexico. It wasn’t long ago that the community of Cabo Pulmo was a subsistence fishing village; the families had been fishing the area for generations. A few elders in the community began to notice fewer catches and smaller fish than in the past. There was a movement in the community to preserve the area, and in 1994 Cabo Pulmo became a national marine park. Now, the community works to conserve the area and the marine life that lives there. The community shares their special place with divers and other visitors from all over the world.

This giant school of jacks has become iconic in highlighting the success of the marine park. The size of the school is impressive – the school can fill an area as big as a basketball court, and from top to bottom is about 15 metres/50 feet in height. In this shot I was following my dive buddy, Adil, as he took video of the inside of the school. Finally he emerged from the middle of the school of jacks and there were two goliath groupers in front of him. The fish slowly separated and formed a nice frame around my friend and the groupers.

Replacement Card blog 3Giant Pacific Manta Ray and Diver, Isla San Benedicto, Mexico Giant Pacific mantas are graceful in every turn. It’s no wonder divers fly all over the world to see these gentle giants. However, mantas are listed as “Vulnerable” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. In certain parts of the world these mantas are becoming increasingly rare as they face persistent fishing pressure.

In Mexico’s Socorro Islands, located 400 kilometres/250 miles southeast of Cabo San Lucas, interactions with mantas are magnificent. It’s not just the sightings of mantas that can make dives with them special, but also the types of interaction. To the delight of divers, mantas enjoy bubbles on their bellies and they will soak up the bubbles as long as there are divers. It’s an amazing sight to see and it also provides divers with a unique insight into their behavior. During this dive, while we were playing with the mantas my dive buddy, Adil, happened to be filming as a black manta slowly squeezed between us. The large manta (four metres/16 feet from wingtip to wingtip) was gliding over me to get to my bubbles. As the manta soaked up the bubbles looked into its eye and could see it processing our interaction. This occurred nonstop for the entirety of our dive.

The Blue Water Series by David Valencia limited-edition replacement cards are now available for PADI Professionals and student divers through the PADI Online Processing Center on the PADI Pros’ Site.

New Online Processing Center Launching in August

The new Online Processing Center is launching in late August. The new center is being enhanced based on PADI Member feedback to ensure a more user friendly experience. It will also be responsive in design so that it can be easily accessed by your mobile or tablet.

Importantly, once the new Online Processing Center goes live in August, the old PIC Online application will be retired, and all online certifications will need to be processed via the revamped Online Processing Center.

Some of the exciting enhancements to the Online Processing Center are:

  • Reorganization and simplified navigation.
  • Mobile optimization of all screens.
  • Simplified language and wording throughout the portal.
  • Downloadable reports for digital products in each status.
  • Digital codes scoreboard for a quick reference of your available codes.
  • Integrated tooltips to provide descriptions of each section or application.
  • Improved filtering and sorting options of digital code data.
  • Drop-down menu of languages.

The revised Online Processing Center will launch in multiple languages including English, Korean, Japanese, Chinese, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Arabic and Russian.

If you have any additional questions, please contact PADI Training or Customer Services.


EVE Webinar Series: #4 – Opening EVE for the First Time

EVE is PADI’s preferred Customer Relationship Management software package designed to improve the efficiency of running your Dive Centre, increase your sales (courses, retail, servicing, rental and trips) and maximise your profits.

Whether you are an existing EVE user or a PADI Dive Centre owner looking to improve your Customer Relationship Management, our short webinars full of useful information and tips will be of use to help you integrate this tool and bring the power of a virtual employee into your business.

Here’s the fourth in this webinar series: Opening EVE for the First Time:

For more EVE Customer Relationship Management information and tips, contact your PADI Regional Manager for further assistance.

Skills Deconstructed: The “How-To” on Happy Hovering

Alexandra DimitriouAlexandra Dimitriou-Engeler is a PADI Dive Center owner in Agia Napa, Cyprus. She became a diver in 1992 and received her bachelor’s degree in Oceanography at Plymouth University in 2003. Her love of the ocean has always been her driving force, and this has led to the natural progression of becoming a diving instructor in 2005. She is currently a PADI staff instructor and owner of Scuba Monkey Ltd and is writing a series of guest blogs for PADI Europe, Middle East and Africa. Her next article shares advice on teaching the tricky skill of hovering to new students…

Good buoyancy control is one of the most important skills that a diver must master for two reasons: It keeps the diver in control throughout their dive and protects the marine environment at the same time.

Many students find hovering a tough skill to master. I know I did when I was an open water student, and that was over 20 years ago. I can still remember the frustration of not getting it right the first time. I can also remember the calm reassuring voice of my instructor.

So let’s see why students struggle sometimes.

Being overweighted: Take a lot of time with your guests when you first enter the water on day one. If a diver is overweighted, hovering is a nightmare. Take the extra time at the beginning and you will save time later.

Not thinking about how they are breathing: Try to emphasize that buoyancy should become a habit, and they should not just treat it as an isolated skill. Get them thinking about their breathing. Nothing more than that. Just make them aware from day one.

Getting Frustrated: Emphasize that hovering will take a little time, and because it is a skill that is controlled largely by the lungs, any changes to their rhythm of breathing will affect their success. If they get frustrated, their breathing will change, which will make it harder to control their buoyancy…. then they will get even more frustrated and the issue compounds itself.


The Perfect Buddha Pose

So, what techniques can help you help your student?

#1 – Briefing

I like to tell my students the steps that I will go through before going into a hover. I ask them to kneel, stand or lie on the bottom, but I also emphasize the notion that, soon, contact with the floor will be eliminated altogether. I ask them to visualize their lungs once they get into the position that they would like to stay in for 30 seconds.

“Hovering requires control and it requires calmness” – This is my opening line when I start briefing them about this skill.

I keep this briefing for hovering only. I reassure them that they will be able to do it because they have already done multiple fin pivots and that hovering is almost the same – except this time ALL of their body will be off the bottom. I warn them that this is tricky because it is mostly about feeling the differences in their buoyancy as they inhale and exhale.

“As soon as you feel your body start to rise…. Exhale.

“As soon as you feel your body start to get deeper then inhale”

I repeat this several times. I show them how to signal this thought process underwater.

I find that keeping my voice to an almost yoga whisper keeps their nerves at bay. I keep repeating that they should stay calm, to have fun with this lesson and within a very short while they will never touch the bottom again if they don’t want to. I tell them that this is where the magic happens.

#2 Underwater

I find that this briefing is the key to success underwater. Students are prepared for the possibility that hovering will take time and therefore they give themselves the mental space to get their head around the physics of it.

michelle finlay (alex blog hovering)

Success for Michelle Finlay, hovering like a Pro!

I demonstrate the exaggerated breathing hand gestures that we instructors have used since our IDC. I get my legs into position and inflate my BC in tiny bursts to get to that bouncy feeling, signifying that I am neutrally buoyant. I show them that I am inhaling, that I start to rise because of it and that I exhale just as I get to the mid-water position. I show them the signal for thinking. Thinking about how full my lungs are as I control my position in the water.

In my experience students get to the mid-water point quite easily, but they cannot help but try to balance themselves with their hands and fins. Let them do it for a few seconds before gently silencing the movement. You are looking for a calm face. Let them feel the movement of a slightly-too-deep inhalation – how they ascend a little too far as a result. Let them feel it – don’t correct them too early but also be ready to stop them if they go up too fast. It’s a fine line between trial and error. Keep them safe above all but give them some learning room.

It won’t be long before they’re hovering like a pro – and they will remember your methods long after they have completed their first logbook entry all the way to the day when they might be teaching their very own students to hover!

Don’t forget, once your students have completed their PADI Open Water Diver course, they can sign up to complete a PADI Peak Performance Buoyancy specialty course to further improve their diving skills. For more information on becoming a PADI Peak Performance Specialty Instructor, click here or contact the PADI Training department.