Membership Renewals for Inactive PADI Pros

Diver - Scuba Diver - Instructor - Topside

Written by Mark Wastall, PADI Regional Training Consultant.

“The strength of the team is each individual member, the strength of each member is the team” – Coach Phil Jackson.

It’s the time of year when PADI Membership renewal is on a lot of inactive dive professional’s minds. The PADI Regional Training Consultant team receive hundreds of questions regarding renewals from members across the Asia Pacific region. Let’s have a look at some of the common questions we get asked.

Q:  ‘I didn’t renew last year, do I have to re-sit my Instructor Examination?’

A:  No, we understand how hard the dive professional works to earn their status along with the time and dedication involved in becoming a respected PADI member. We also understand that sometimes life just happens, opportunities arise and diving can occasionally take a back seat. There is no reason you should be punished for that by having to start over again. Retraining varies depending on the circumstances and can be undertaken via several means.

Q: ‘I have been un-renewed for several years but have remained in the industry, is this taken in to account?’

A: Yes, again we appreciate that job roles can change and maybe your chances of teaching are reduced. If you have been running a dive store for a few years for example, this would be reflected in the retraining required.

Q: ‘How long can I be out of status before I have to re-sit by Instructor Examination?’

A: As previously mentioned, we do all we can to avoid this from happening. You would have to be out of status and away from the industry for a considerable amount of time before that would happen. Even in the event that you are required to complete your OWSI/IDC and IE again, we may be able to help with some of the costs involved as a thank you for coming back to us. It’s never too late!

So, if you want to take advantage of the many opportunities you have as a PADI professional once again, what are your retraining options if you have had a lapse in your membership?

The first option is to view a free Online Member Forum or attend a Live Member Forum in your area. Either of these will take around an hour of your time and are simply an update on PADI news, products, courses and standards. The next level would be a Status Update with a PADI Course Director, auditing an OWSI/IDC or an Online Status Update. To find your nearest Course Director, use the new PADI Dive Shop Locator. The Online Status Update will also include a Digital Product Suite (5 top of the range digital eLearning products) along with a digital PADI Guide To Teaching and digital PADI Instructor Manual to bring you back up to speed. If you have been out of status for too long to qualify for any of these options then it’s time for IDC/IE.

Once you have access to the PADI Pros’ Site, it’s a great idea to review the Training Bulletins that you will have missed since being away and to download the latest Instructor Manual to keep yourself familiar with the latest skills and standards. We have similar levels of retraining for PADI Divemaster, Assistant Instructor, EFR Instructor and PADI Freediver Instructor. It really is that easy to get back to what you love doing! Give your Regional Training Consultant a call and come back to the PADI family.

For more information on renewing as an inactive member call +61 2 9454 2888 or email a PADI Regional Training Consultant.

Teaching Diving is Teaching Life

As early as the 1950s, scientific research began demonstrating that sports have significant benefits. Early research focused on physical activity in team sports, but today, research is broader and looks at mental as well as physical changes. It also looks beyond team sports to include adventure/extreme sports like mountain biking, kayaking, base jumping, and (of course) scuba. The latest findings suggest that sports that give an adrenaline rush develop skills that apply to everyday life.

Life Lessons: Confidence, Self-Reliance, Self-Control

Adventure sports tend to be more individual and have a perceived higher degree of risk than competitive team sports. This helps participants learn to rely on themselves as they stretch beyond their comfort zones, which builds confidence. But, many adventure sports (including diving) have strong teamwork aspects, which develops socialization and cooperative interaction skills much as do team sports. Anecdotal and research evidence finds that adventure-sport participants tend to be calmer, more confident, mentally stronger, more self-disciplined and better able to handle stress situations. One study found that extreme sport participants who experience fear and close calls not only exhibited more ability to manage fear, but also more humility.

Connected to the Environment

Unlike field/stadium team sports, which are usually played on constructed ball fields, stadiums and parks, adventure sports take participants into the environment because almost all of them require relatively natural settings. The benefit of this is that adventure-sport participants tend to develop a positive, protective relationship with the environment because their activities are integrated with it rather than separated from it. This social benefit, many argue, develops learners who are environmentally aware and sensitive, which is important because our collective future depends upon our relationship with the environment.

Old Dogs Do Learn New Tricks

Physical activity is known to benefit our health in our senior years, and now it seems that suitable mental challenges prevent – and in some ways can reverse – mental decline. Studies find that older adults who keep learning new skills tend to stay more active and enjoy better cognitive and memory performance. But, research finds that this learning must be challenging with demands on both thinking and memory. Most adventure sports require new skills, planning, assessing conditions and social interaction, making them good fits for the purpose of helping slow mental decline in older adults, as well as providing physical activity. The limiting factor for seniors is the ability to meet the physical requirements of a given adventure sport.

The Takeaways

Of all adventure sports, diving is probably open to the widest range of age, culture, physical abilities and other demographic characteristics. It is likely the adventure sport with the widest access for senior participants. These characteristics make diving suited to offering benefits to -divergent markets with differing, specialized interests and needs.

  1. You’re not just “teaching scuba.” You’re teaching skills that have broad personal applications. This can be a useful message when presenting learn-to-dive opportunities to different groups as well as individuals.
  2. Market these “extra” benefits. Especially with institutions like youth, senior and environmental groups, it is exactly these developmental and environmental connections that add a reason to participate in diving or allow you to offer it to their members.
  3. Target the “nonteamers.” Scuba will appeal to many people who can’t or don’t want to participate in team sports, yet offer many of the same benefits.
  4. Target the “teamers,” too. Diving will also appeal to people who do like team sports. Scuba gives such groups something more individual in nature that they can do together, with some distinct challenges and benefits.
  5. Continue education. Senior divers may feel like they “just” want to be PADI® Open Water Divers, but continuing education offers new, deeper mental challenges, socialization and physical activity – all associated with benefits for older adults.

References

  • Association for Psychological Science (2013) Learning new skills keeps an aging mind sharp. (psychologicalscience.org/news/releases/learning-new-skills-keeps-an-aging-mind-sharp.html)
  • English Outdoor Council. Values and benefits of outdoor education, training and recreation. (englishoutdoorcouncil.org/Values_and_benefits.htm)
  • Adventure sports. (learn.healthpro.com/adventure-sports/)
  • Mathis, B. (2017) What are the benefits of adventure sports? (livestrong.com/article/149821-what-are-the-benefits-of-adventure-sports/)
  • OMG Lifestyle (2017) Major health benefits of adventure sports. (omglifestyle.co.uk/major-health-benefits-adventure-sports/)
  • Scott, K. (2015) The surprising benefits of extreme sports. (coach.nine.com.au/2015/10/19/13/34/the-surprising-benefits-of-extreme-sports)
  • Smart Health Shop (2018) Surprising mental benefits of doing extreme sports. (blog.smarthealthshop.com/2018/04/10/surprising-mental-benefits-of-doing-extreme-sports/)
  • org. The health benefits of sport and physical activity.(sportanddev.org/en/learn-more/health/health-benefits-sport-and-physical-activity)
  • Vitelli, R (2012) Can lifelong learning help as we age? (psychologytoday.com/us/blog/media-spotlight/201210/can-lifelong-learning-help-we-age)
  • The Wellness Seeker, Extreme sports benefits and health promotion. (thewellnessseeker.com/extreme-sports-benefits-health-promotion/)

A version of this article originally appeared in the 4th Quarter 2018 edition of The Undersea Journal®.

The Undersea Journal First Quarter 2019 – Now Available

Each quarter The Undersea Journal is filled with stories and articles that help you stay informed and inspired as a PADI Professional.

The First Quarter 2019 edition includes articles on; tips for turning students into engaged divers, how to make PADI’s marketing resources work for you, DEMA show updates, dive shops making a difference, how travel helps a commitment to dive, and many other articles.

There are several digital reading options for you to access this publication:

If you’ve opted for the printed version, it will continue to be delivered to your mailing address.

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

The Undersea Journal – Fourth Quarter 2018 – Now Available

Each quarter The Undersea Journal is filled with stories and articles that help you stay informed and inspired as a PADI Professional.

The Fourth Quarter 2018 edition includes articles on Trends in Teaching and Training, Digital Optimization, The Revised Project AWARE Specialty Course,  Dive Travel, Family Additions, Gear and much more.

There are several digital reading options for you to access this publication:

If you’ve opted for the printed version, it will continue to be delivered to your mailing address.

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