Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Instructor Specialties after the IDC completed today

Today, we completed the Instructor Specialties after the September IDC/IE.

We, being Nienke and me. The Specialties that I taught Nienke where on Monday; Search & Recovery and Night diving. The Search & recovery dive turned out to be a very interesting dive by the amount of fish we encountered on Chaweng Beach, including a Lion fish, a fairly rare sight in the Gulf of Thailand.

On Tuesday we took the Seatran ferry out to Koh Tao, where we switched to our own boat, the MV Waverunner. Here's a picture of the Waverunner's bow with Koh Nangyuan in the background whilst the boat is anchored in Japanese Garden.

Here's Nienke relaxing at the end of the day on the Waverunner after two very nice and relaxing dives, in which we conducted a Naturalist and Navigation dive.

Today we completed the Instructor Specialty training with two Deep dives as part of the Deep diving specialty at Sail Rock. Here's Nienke in action to prepare a 40 meter long rope, so it doesn't get entangled once we want to throw the rope overboard and use it as a descent/reference line.

This is how 40 meters of rope look like once they're correctly prepared, it just fits in this small bucket and it won't get entangled!

Last but not least, Nienke today at Sail Rock, during the second Deep dive of the day. The visibility was fantastic with up to 20 to 25 meters.



Thursday, September 20, 2007

PADI IE September completed

The September PADI IE has been completed.

Both Nienke and Jeff did well. Nienke had almost straight 5's for all of her presentations and Jeff did also very well, except on the Open Water presentation where he had a problem with tying a sheet bend.

On the picture from left to right; Thomas Knedlik, the PADI Examiner; Nienke Rakhorst from the Netherlands; Camille; Amit Padgaonkarn, IDCS and Jeff George from the UK.
Congrats to all of you!

During the IE, there was a PADI delegation visiting Koh Tao, with some high ranking guys. On the picture from left to right is Mark Spiers, head of sales for PADI AP; Henrik Nimb, vice president of PADI AP; myself and last but not least, Hans Ullrich, the Dutch regional manager for Thailand.

It was 12 years ago when Henrik visited Koh Tao the last time, when he was an Examiner himself. He had a good time on Koh Tao and he enjoyed being back again and see the immense development that Koh Tao went through during the last 12 years with his own eyes.


Tuesday, September 18, 2007

PADI IE September 2007 started

The September PADI IE on Koh Tao started today.

With a good 30 candidates, including Nienke and Jeff and 3 PADI Examiners, Thomas, George and Young Hee the IE kicked off at 1 pm with an introduction by the examiners, followed by the 5 exams and a General Standards and Procedures exam.

The official PADI IE banner with Examiner Young Hee Hanis sitting below it. Young Hee is Korean but speaks also English and German and she's PADI Asia Pacific's Korean liaison. The Korean market is actually growing rapidly right now and it's very exciting to see it develop.

This is how a PADI IE with over 30 nervous and excited candidates looks like moments before the IE Orientation kicks off.

Nienke and Jeff after (very) successfully completing their exams part of the IE, together with Amit, who came over together with us for moral support. One down, three to go.


Friday, September 14, 2007

The September OWSI part of the IDC is on it's way.

The September OWSI part of the IDC is on it's way.

Today was already day 2 of the OWSI program, part of my current IDC. Jeff and Nienke are doing fine and Amit is looking on in the background, picking up more evaluation skills during his IDCS course.

Here's Nienke in action during her first prescriptive teaching presentation in the classroom. She's showing us a lift bag.

Here's Nienke in action during her Confined Water presentation earlier today, controlling Jeff whilst he is performing a Controlled Emergency Swimming Ascent (CESA), a skill from the Open Water diver course.

Now it's Jeff's turn to control Nienke during his Confined Water teaching presentation, where he was in charge of the Cramp removal skill of the Rescue diver course.

Tomorrow they're already on their last Knowledge Development- and Confined Water presentations. On Tuesday, 18th September, we're already on our way over to Koh Tao, to start the PADI Instructor Exam (IE).

Stay tuned for more information about the current IDC and upcoming IE.


Sunday, September 9, 2007

September IDC in full swing

The September IDC is indeed in full swing.

Yesterday we kicked off with the first day of the IDC and today, the second day has already been completed. Jeff and Nienke had their first classroom (knowledge development)- and confined water- presentations and they did well.

Here's Camille in action during the Project Aware presentation, earlier today. During the Assistant Instructor (AI) part of the IDC the candidates will enjoy 6 presentations by me and during the OWSI part they have to sit through another 13 presentations by me or in general, by a PADI Course Director.

Here we are, shortly before we dig in into a well deserved lunch, during the lunch break. As usual in World Resort, it's a lovely lunch and we are well stuffed afterwards. From left to right, Jeff, Nienke, myself and Amit.

Here's a view on the beach at World Resort, a view we enjoy during each lunch and it looks like we will be doing our Open Water IDC dives here as well, conditions seem favorable enough.

Stay tuned, there's more to come these next days,


Thursday, September 6, 2007

IDC prep course started today

Today the IDC prep started.

With two candidates, Jeff from the UK and Nienke from the Netherlands, and one IDCS candidate, Amit (see yesterday's blog post) we started to sort the red tape and completed all the required paperwork and started with the first presentation by me, the introduction to the IDC. Before lunch they also completed two exams, Physics and Physiology, which they both passed.

After lunch we went into the pool and completed a skill circuit of 20 skills and practiced rescue scenario # 7, unconscious diver at the surface, which is part of the PADI IE.

Here's Jeff during his introduction part this morning.

Nienke telling us her about how she got involved in diving.

Jeff and Nienke at work during their exams. Amit is keeping an eye out in the back of the classroom.

Tomorrow morning we continue with the remainder of the exams, RDP, Equipment and General Skills and after lunch we will practice the skill circuit one more time.

Stay tuned for regular updates and pix of this IDC.


Wednesday, September 5, 2007

IDCS Course started today

Today I started an IDCS course.

Amit, who participated in my 2nd IDC ever as a PADI Course Director in June 2003, started his IDCS course today. He worked all that time for one of our shops on Koh Samui, and started with us as an Open Water diver, from absolute scratch. Hats off Amit!!

He found it's time for a change and found a job in his native India, on the Andaman Islands. It saves him a lot of trouble having to apply for the Thai visa each year.

The IDCS course requires a bit of preparation and I always start this course a day before the prep IDC course starts. Participants need to pass 5 exams with an 80% passing grade, pass a General Standards Exam with 80%, present a Knowledge Development Presentation with a 4.0 out of 5.0 and the same for a Confined Water presentation and on top of that pass a Skill circuit in Confined Water of 20 skills, all before the actual IDC starts. Today we completed the exams which Amit passed easily and he sat through 4 IDCS presentations presented by me, all before lunch.
The afternoon was spent watching video's and learning how to evaluate Knowledge Development-, Confined Water- and Open Water presentations.
So we still have a busy couple of days ahead. Most of what still needs to be completed can be combined during the prep course, starting tomorrow.

Amit fully concentrated on one of his evaluation forms, whilst watching a video presentation.

More concentration, trying to see and hear the right information for his evaluation skills.

He will also attend a full IDC and during this he will keep evaluating the candidates all the time, whenever they have a presentation and guided by me, he should reach a consistent scoring level that's in sync with PADI's standards and my scoring results.