Sunday, December 30, 2012

Another busy and successful dive year; 2012

This is as good a moment it gets to look back at a successful 2012.

It was not as busy as last year but it was still enough to keep me on my toes and to get nice numbers during the year.
With Thai IDC programs on Koh Samui and in Khao Lak, Gili Air in Indonesia and Dauin and Malapascua in the Philippines, there was also a fair bit of travelling involved but I consider that as a privilege and enjoy the travelling bit and the great opportunities it gives me to dive at excellent dive sites.

PADI IDC Koh Samui, Thailand June 2012

PADI IDC Koh Samui, Thailand June 2012

This year I completed 12 PADI IDC programs with a total of 42 IDC candidates and 3 IDCS candidates. Although not as many programs and candidates as last year, the average IDC candidate number per IDC is better.

PADI IDC Dauin, Philippines July 2012

PADI IDC Dauin, Philippines July 2012

This year I could welcome students from 3 countries that I never had in my class before; Luxembourg, Turkey and Wales.

Out of the 12 PADI IDC's this year; 6 IDC's where conducted in Thailand, 4 on Koh Samui in conjunction with PADI 5* IDC Center 'The Dive Academy' and 2 in Khao Lak in conjunction with PADI 5* IDC center 'Seadragon'. In Indonesia in conjunction with PADI 5* IDC Center 'Oceans 5' and the Philippines in conjunction with PADI CDC Center 'Sea Explorers' I had 3 programs in each country.

IE Party Gili Air, Indonesia, November 2012

IE Party Gili Air, Indonesia, November 2012

A breakdown shows 12 candidates in Thailand compared to 36 last year, 16 candidates in Indonesia compared to 12 last year and 14 candidates in the Philippines compared to 5 last year.
A massive decrease in Thailand but strangely enough I will start 2013 with an IDC on Koh Lanta with 10 candidates, almost as many as I had last year in total in Thailand!


PADI IE Malapascua, Philippines, November 2012

PADI IE Malapascua, Philippines, November 2012

One of the highlights for me was to take the PADI recreational Side Mount course in Subic Bay, Philippines with my mentor and instructor Andy Davis. After the course I went on and got myself two Hollis SMS 50 harnesses and taught my first PADI Recreational Side Mount Instructor course in Malapascua. 
A few more courses are lined up for next year and I'm very much looking forward to them.

PADI IDC Khao Lak, Thailand, December 2012

PADI IDC Khao Lak, Thailand, December 2012

It's time to say my 'Thank you' speech and lots of thanks go out to the PADI crew in Sydney, Paul and Claire on Koh Samui; Sally, Peter, Leilani and Stephan in Khao Lak; Sander and Simone on Gili Air in Indonesia; Chris, Rolf, Herve, Pascale, Sven and Martin in Dauin and Malapascua and last but not least; Andy Davis in Manila and Subic.

PADI recreational side mount diving, Malapascua, Philippines 2012

PADI recreational side mount diving, Malapascua, Philippines 2012

To all my students in 2012; thanks for making this all happen!

Looking forward to 2013, bring it on!

Camille

Friday, December 21, 2012

EFR Course at the Imperial Boathouse in Choengmon on Koh Samui, Thailand

Today was spend teaching an EFR course at the Imperial Boathouse in Choengmon with beach staff from the Boathouse and the Banyan Tree in Lamai.

EFR course, Imperial Boathouse, Choengmon, Koh Samui, Thailand

The group picture after the course in front of the Boathouse

The emphasis of the course is towards providing primary care (CPR) and secondary care (first aid) to people in need.

EFR course, Imperial Boathouse, Choengmon, Koh Samui, Thailand explanation

Explaining and demonstrating the recovery position

After 2006 and 2008, this was the third visit to the Boathouse for this kind of Emergency First Aid training, together with my wife Khun Tassanee who helped with invaluable translations.

EFR course, Imperial Boathouse, Choengmon, Koh Samui, Thailand recovery position

Having fun during practicing the log roll

It's hard work but also very interesting to convey the ideas of the EFR course into a beach resort setting in Thailand but it seemed that the staff of the two hotels warmed up to the course and also had fun during the practice of the course skills.

EFR course, Imperial Boathouse, Choengmon, Koh Samui, Thailand log roll

More log roll action

Thanks to the respective General Managers, Mr. Doeke and Mr. Remko for making this happen and for Khun Kunaporn for all the help and preparation for the course.

EFR course, Imperial Boathouse, Choengmon, Koh Samui, Thailand bandaging Banyan Tree style

Bandaging Banyan Tree style

Now it's time to get the certifications processed and within two years it will be time for a refresher course, I can't wait for that to happen and am already looking forward to it.

EFR course, Imperial Boathouse, Choengmon, Koh Samui, Thailand bandaging

The bandage victim of the Boathouse, having lots of sanuk!

Happy Christmas to everyone working at the Imperial Boathouse, Banyan Tree and the readers of my blog. There's soon some more posts to follow so stay tuned.

Camille

Sunday, December 16, 2012

The PADI IE in Khao Lak, Thailand for December 2012 is in the bag!

The very last PADI IE programs of this years in the Asia Pacific region where conducted simultaneously in Khao Lak with my candidates and in Pattaya and the next year's very first PADI IE in the Asia Pacific region will again see my candidates.

First tings first though and that was the last PADI IE of the year for me and Dan, the examiner. The two candidates did well with Lars having to look at the Standards again.


From left to right; Camille (PADI Course Director), Sayhau, Lars and Dan (PADI Examiner)

Well done Sayhau and Lars and good luck! Sayhau will be fine since he speaks Mandarin and should get plenty of good job offers and Lars already works at Seadragon and he's off to the Similan islands on a live aboard come Tuesday! 

A long year of PADI IDC's and IE's has come to an end but not all teaching is over yet. An EFR course in a Samui hotel is still in the cards and a Recreational side mount diver and instructor course may be conducted before the year is over around Samui waters!

The first IDC next year will be on Koh Lanta in Thailand, starting 5th January followed by 27th January on Malapascua in the Philippines and 17th February on Gili Air in Indonesia. A nice international start to the new year! See you there!

Camille

Saturday, December 15, 2012

EFR Instructor course, Khao Lak, Thailand in December 2012 is in the bag

Yesterday we completed the EFR Instructor course with Lars and Sayhau at PADI 5* IDC center Seadragon in Khao Lak, Thailand.
Plenty of opportunities to play around with Little and Baby Annie and the AED, getting practice so they can go out and teach this in the real world after the PADI IE, which starts today and finishes already tomorrow.

EFR Instructor course, Khao Lak, Thailand, December 2012

From left to right; Lars, Camille and Sayhau

Stay tuned for updates on this PADI IE and when you're interested in taking your PADI IDC, please contact me.

Camille

Friday, December 14, 2012

The PADI IDC for December 2012 in Khao Lak has been completed

After lots of hard work in the form of classroom presentation by me and the candidates, confined water and open water presentations by the candidates, rescue exercise # 7 practice, theory and general standards exams and dozens of workshops, the December 2012 PADI IDC in Khao Lak, Thailand came to an end yesterday.

PADI IDC Decmber 2012, Khao Lak, Thailand

Happy faces after the Open Water dives yesterday, the last part of this PADI IDC

Today we will complete the EFR Instructor course and some remedial training and tomorrow morning it will be show time at the start of the PADI IE. Updates will follow soon!

If you think that it's your turn to participate in one of my IDC programs, please contact me for more information on the next programs, starting 5th January with PADI 5* IDC Centers Blue Planet and Scubafish on Koh Lanta in Thailand, 27th January with PADI 5* IDC Center Sea Explorers on Malapascua in the Philippines, 17th February with PADI 5* IDC Center Oceans 5 on Gili Air in Indonesia and 26th February with PADI 5* IDC Center 'The Dive Academy' on Koh Samui in Thailand.

Camille

Sunday, December 9, 2012

PADI IDC in Khao Lak, Thailand is half way

The last PADI IDC of the year in Khao Lak, Thailand is half way! That went really fast indeed. Since we have a small group we get a lot of things done each day.


Class of December 2012, from left to right; Say Hau, Camille and Lars

The usual IDC stuff has been dealt with; red tape for starters, presentations by me, classroom and confined water presentations by the candidates, skills circuits, rescue exercise # 7 and the always popular theory exams.


Ginat stride during confined water

Each day we also stuff are selves silly with the excellent lunches next door at Tiffy's, a stand alone reason to take your IDC in Khao Lak!


Lars and Say Hau during an alternate air source skill

Just a couple of more days and we have another PADI IE knocking on our door, the last one in all of South East Asia, as far a I know.


Rescue exercise # 7, practice again and again and again, please, somebody call for help!

Is it time for you to participate in my IDC? See my IDC schedule for dates that suit you next year and contact me for more details.

The next PADI IDC is scheduled to start 5th January on Koh Lanta in Thailand followed by an IDC starting 27th January on Malapascua in the Philippines and 17th February on Gili Air in Indonesia.

Camille

Thursday, December 6, 2012

The last PADI IDC for 2012 is under way

It's the last PADI IDC of the year and it's all happening in Khao Lak in Thailand. It's small group this time around, with two candidates, Lars from Sweden and Say Hau from Malaysia.

Theory exams Khao Lak PADI IDC December 2012

The theory exams, is that Say Hau in already in despair?

Stay tuned for updates on this PADI IDC in progress, more updates from my 99th IDC as a PADI Course Director are to follow.

Join me for your PADI IDC next year with exciting programs starting on Koh Lanta in Thailand on 5th January and on Malapascua in the Philippines on 27th January 2013.
Contact me for more details.

Camille

Monday, December 3, 2012

PADI IE on Malapascua in December 2012 a 100% success

At last it was there, the long awaited and at the same time, dreaded PADI IE on Malapascua for the 8 candidates of the November IDC on Malapascua.
It came and went faster then they could think though! It was also one of the biggest PADI IE's to date on Malapascua with 19 candidates in total.


From left to right; Johan (PADI Master Instructor), Romain, Hakan, Tiago, Oskar, Agnes, Tabea, Lydia, Camille (PADI Course Director), Franziska and George (PADI Examiner)

Thanks to Johan for staffing and good luck to all 8 candidates in your future instructor careers!

Great job also from Oskar, who's Dad is a retired PADI Course Director, had to live up to this and I hope  succeeded!

If you're interested in participating in a PADI with 5* IDC and CDC Center Sea Explorers in the Philippines, the next course starts 27th January 2013 on Malapascua again. Contact me for more details.

Later this week I start a PADI IDC in Khao Lak in Thailand and next year starts with a PADI IDC on Koh Lanta in Thailand starting 5th January.

See you there.

Camille

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

EFR Instructor course on Malapascua, Philippines in November 2012

The PADI IDC on Malapascua was barely finished or the candidates begged me to start other courses in the classroom. Well, no, it wasn't really like that but we did start the EFR Instructor course and we did have fun, despite having to spend another day in the classroom.

EFR Instructor course on Malapascua, Philippines

Left to right; Hakan, Agnes, Tiago, Tabea, Romain, myself, Franzi and Lydia (Oskar already completed the course)

Tomorrow the PADI IE starts so stay tuned for more updates on that and the specialty instructor training.

Camille

Monday, November 26, 2012

The PADI IDC for November 2012 on Malapascua in the Philippines has been completed

Today everybody was in such a good mood when we got back on land after the second open water dive during this PADI IDC, it had to be that the IDC was over! Or maybe a few had some real good scored and scored 5 out of 5!
Either way, a sight of relief was heard around the island. Well done you all, it's done and dusted! This IDC can now officially be put in the archives.

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, group picture

Class of November 2012, left to right; Romain, Tiago, Johan (PADI Master Instructor), Camille (PAFI Course Director), Agnes, Oskar, Franzi, Lydia, Hakan and Tabea

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, knowledge development at work

At work during knowledge development, coffee is missing!

A lot of hard work has been put into IDC by the candidates and it did cost a few bits of sweat (for real) and tears (figuratively speaking) for them. It seems that it's paying off though.

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, knowledge development

Franzi during her classroom presentation about Project Aware

Considering the size of the group, we worked well and efficiently and it all came together towards the end of the course. They are most certainly ready for the PADI IE starting 29th November here on Malapascua in the Philippines. Come Sunday afternoon, 2nd December, we should have 8 new PADI instructors on the island

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, confined water

Romain keeping it on the hush hush during confined water

Tomorrow we will complete the EFR Instructor course followed by a real day off before the IE starts! 

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, open water

Hakan and the two half hitches

This is a good moment to thank all 8 candidates for the good times and fun we had and thanks to Johan who staffed this IDC and who did a great job helping out and making it run in a timely fashion.

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, open water, knot tying

Bowline alley

It will be interesting to keep following all of them and see where they end up working. Plenty of plans have been made and a first start of a good network is in place with so many candidates during this program.

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, the Course Director

The boss in action

If you're interested in participating in a PADI IDC with PADI CDC Center Sea Explorers in the Philippines, please contact me for more information on our programs. The 2013 Philippines IDC schedule for Sea Explorers and me can be found here.
We kick off 27th January followed by 14th March, both on Malapascua. We will have a total of 6 programs next year, so; See you next year!

Camille

Thursday, November 22, 2012

The November PADI IDC on Malapascua is half way

Time really flies when you're having fun and that's what we have during the current version of the November PADI IDC on Malapascua in the Philippines.

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, group picture

From left to right; Romain, Tiago (hidden), Johan, Camille, Agnes, Franzi, Oskar, Lydia, Tabea and Hakan

Everybody's working hard and we achieved a lot already; classroom presentations, skill circuit practice, confined water presentations, rescue exercise # 7, theory exams among others, not to mention various work shops.

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, buddy checks

Buddy checks on the boat

Stay tuned for more updates of this PADI IDC over the next couple of days.

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, alternate air source

Alternate air source ascent

Feel free to contact me for information on my PADI IDC programs, the next will start 5th December in Khao Lak in Thailand, the last IDC of this year and we start again on Koh Lanta in Thailand 6th January, followed by an IDC on Malapascua in the Philippines again, starting 27th January 2013.

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, giant stride

Giant stride

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, CESA Lydia

Cesa by Lydia

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, hover

Hover

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, CESA Tabea

Cesa Tabea style

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, weightbelt removal and replacement

Weight belt removal and replacement underwater

PADI IDC Malapascua, November 2012, rescue exercise # 7

Rescue exercise # 7

Sunday, November 18, 2012

PADI IDC on Malapascua for November 2013 on it's way

Two days earlier than originally scheduled we started the PADI IDC on Malapascua due the amount of candidates. A total of 8 IDC candidates are welcomed and I have a couple of firsts with Hakan from Turkey and Franzi from Luxembourg, my first candidates from these countries.

PADI IDC Malapascua, Philippines, November 2013

Tiago, Tabea, Agnes, Lydia and Romain enjoying the physics exam

We also welcome Tiago from Brazil, Tabea and Lydia from Germany, Agnes from the Netherlands, Romain from France (well, from Tahiti really) and Oskar from Sweden with Johan from Sweden staffing, who also staffed the last IDC in Dauin in July.

PADI IDC Malapascua, Philippines, November 2013 with Sea Explorers

Lydia, Romain, Oskar, Franzi and Hakan negotiating the theory exams

The next couple of days are going to be action filled and interesting to see how they all develop, so keep an eye open for updates.

You can become a PADI Instructor as well, the last PADI IDC of this year will be in Khao Lak, Thailand, followed by IDC's early next year on Koh Lanta starting 5th January and on Koh Phangan starting 9th January followed by another IDC on Malapascua starting 27th January.

Camille

Saturday, November 17, 2012

First recreational PADI side mount course taught

At last it was time to get my first recreational side mount certification under my belt. During the PADI IDC on Malapascua which is about to start tomorrow, Johan is going to staff, just like during the recent IDC in Dauin, earlier this year. He has a Razor side mount harness and dived already a lot on it and now wanted to get certified.

Side mount diving Malapascua, Philippines

Side mount diving Malapascua, Philippines

That worked out fine, since I just received my teaching credentials for this specialty from PADI and was ready to give it a go myself. One thing lead to another and here we are on Malapascua, teaching the recreational PADI side mount course to Johan over the last two days. We completed a confined open water with skills and had 3 open water dives with a repetition of more or less the same skills, spread out or partially repeated during the open water dives.

Side mount diving Malapascua, Philippines, Johan

Johan showing off his aluminium parts

We had some good dives and this morning we went to Monad Shoal and spotted a handful of Thresher sharks. All very exciting stuff, the training, the new equipment set up and seeing the sharks, a great start of the day!

Side mount diving Malapascua, Philippines, Johan certification dive

Certification dive

get your own PADI recreational side mount certification or instructor certification with Camille. Contact me for more details for the course in the Philippines or in Thailand and Indonesia.

Camille

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Who said drinking and diving don't mix

It's a well established fact that drinking and diving don't go well together. Apparently some people think otherwise though;


Dutch style diving 


Some real from an US brewer


Absolut narced


The Dutch at it again


For all the tec divers among us, some twin ideas

Don't try any of these at home or rather underwater!

Camille

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Hollis sms 50 has arrived

Two sets of them are mine now and the excitement is growing. It's too early to start diving on them, I first need to configure the two sets with 1st stages, 2nd stages, low pressure hoses, high pressure hoses, gauges and a few more bits and bobs. Side mount diving is coming soon at the Lemmens clan!

Hollis sms 50 complete set

A full Hollis sms 50 set

After my recreational side mount diver course certification earlier this year in Subic, Philippines with my mentor Andy Davis, it's now time to spread my wings and get comfortable with the new dive gear. The plan is that in the near future I will be teaching most of the courses in a side mount configuration and as of 2013  plan to start teaching the PADI Recreational side mount course.

Hollis sms 50 two sets

Two sets of Hollis sms 50

It's early days with the side mount courses in respect to recreational diving and from a PADI tec point of view but I am very excited about this and am convinced that side mount diving will carve out just more than a niche and will become rather popular.

The advantages of side mount diving are;

  • Greater Safety; It allows full visibility over your system. You can perform gas checks/management, configure and monitors all of gauges, valves and hoses without assistance 
  • Reduces additional gear; Backplate / Doubles bands / Hardware / Manifold - Benefit when traveling 
  • Aids in transporting gear to and from the beach or boat; both tanks and one tank at a time. This includes exiting the water on a boat dive 
  • Streamlines profile which in turn reduces drag and energy which increases your bottom time
  • Reduces lower back strain
  • Increased gas supply for longer dives

Hollis sms 50 accessories

The accessories

The Hollis sms 50 is ready to use out of the box! Besides the harness it comes with 2 Tank bungees, 2 SS Cam bands (tank straps) and 4 SS Bolt snaps, line is also included with the kit. Neoprene covered shoulder straps, a sternum strap and crotch strap are also part of the deal.

Keep an eye out on these pages for more updates, which will come soon enough!

Camille