Tuesday, January 29, 2013
Here is the PADI Certificate of Excellence from the November 2012 IDC on Malapascua, Philippines that I received today
Friday, January 25, 2013
Today Leandro and me completed two and a half days of PADI side mount training at diver and instructor level.
To the best of my knowledge these are the first certifications on Koh Samui in this specialty on diver and instructor level. Well done Leandro, who was one of the students in the recent January IDC on Koh Lanta.
After certification on the way back from Sail Rock
We started out with theory and knowledge development on side mount training and a confined water dive, together with David, who will take the diver certification later.
Both the theory and confined water dive help student divers to get a better understanding about side mount diving and especially in the pool they get to use side mount for the first time and get familiar with the equipment.
Tanks in front
After that we had a two great dives yesterday at the Angthong National Marine Park, a location I hadn't visited in a couple of years and it was good to dive there again. Especially Yippon Lek has various swim throughs that are very tempting to try out whilst using a side mount configuration.
Top view of Leandro in his Hollis sms 50 harness
Today we dived twice at Sail Rock, besides enjoying two great relaxed dives on our side mount gear, it was like diving in fish soup! Visibility was maybe no more than 5 or 6 meters but the amount of fish around the rock was staggering! I don't think I have ever seen that many potato groupers at Sail Rock. I even had a first, I saw a school of Frigate Mackerel.
A nice side touch was that during our second dive we met another buddy team on side mount, one diver on two tanks and one diver on a single tank! A good surprise!
Out of air drill (picture by Colin Parker)
During the 3 training dives for the diver certification we went through a whole sequence of training skills and Leandro had no problems with them at all and during each dive he was more at ease with his equipment. The last dive today was his Instructor level certification dive and again, all went well! Now it's important to stay wet Leandro and hope to see you again soon!
If you're interested in PADI side mount training, please contact me for more details and my schedule/availability.
Saturday, January 19, 2013
Over the last two days I have been diving with Soon yesterday and Collin today, in order to conduct Instructor level Specialty training. Both participated in the recent PADI IDC on Koh Lanta.
Manta Ray at Hin Muang
Yesterday with Soon we had the luck that during the first two dives at respectively Hin Muang and Hin Daeng a Manta Ray visited. It's always different diving with these majestic creatures and we enjoyed every minute of it.
PADI Recreational Side Mount Instructor training
During the first day Soon completed three dives and participated in the DUP (Digital Underwater Photography) and Side Mount Instructor Specialties.
Scorpion fish at Hin Muang
Today Collin participated in the DUP and Nitrox Instructor specialties with two great dives at Koh Haa.
Banded Sea Krait at Koh Haa
Leandro from the recent IDC is planning to visit me on Koh Samui to get his Side mount diver and instructor ratings and possibly Collin joins for the same ratings and possibly even more.
Good weather and good diving conditions made the two days memorable, especially the Manta Ray was a great moment but during the other dives we also spotted plenty of other animals, as the pictures hopefully show you.
Have you seen Nemo?
It's been a good IDC and to finish it off with some excellent diving is always a good way to make it complete. My next IDC adventure will start 17th February on Gili Air in Indonesia followed by a 26th February start on Koh Phangan (the Samui February dates will now take place on Koh Phangan) and 14th March on Malapascua in the Philippines. Hope to see you there!
Nudibranch at Koh Haa
Thursday, January 17, 2013
It was a hard one this morning, I asked everyone to meet at the shop at 10am so we could start the EFR Instructor course. Especially after the IE party not an easy task! Luck was on their side though when an all day power cut started at 9am and I postponed all training until 2pm.
From left to right standing; Ralf, Soon, Axel, Leandro, Jeanne, Melissa, Aurely and myself
Kneeling in front; Andy, Kevin and Collin
We had fun with Little Annie, Baby Anne and the AED and we did get the presentations out of the way as well! Hard work indeed but fun!
See you soon on one of my PADI IDC's, for more information contact me. The next IDC starts 17th February on Gili Air in Indonesia, followed by 26th February on Koh Samui in Thailand and 14th March on Malapascua in the Philippines.
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
Two nerve wrecking and very looong days are now done and over with and after I finished last year with the last PADI IE in Thailand and all of the PADI Asia Pacific region and I start this year with the first PADI IE in Thailand which happens to be the first PADI IE in all of the PADI Asia Pacific region!
From left to right; Kevin (MI), Melissa, Soon, Jeanne, Rob (PADI Examiner), Aurely, Axel, Ben (Blue Planet shop manager), Gedis (Blue Planet owner), Kevin, Camille and Leandro and Ralf and Collin are sitting in front. Unfortunately Anand (IDCS) is not in this picture.
Good luck to you all in your future dive careers on behalf of me and all at 5* IDC Center Blue Planet Divers.
Come and see me if you want to participate in one of my PADI IDC's, the next one starts 17th February on Gili Air in Indonesia, followed by 26th February on Koh Samui in Thailand and 14th March on Malapascua in the Philippines.
Monday, January 14, 2013
In a few hours the current PADI IDC on Koh Lanta in Thailand will be officially closed. Just two more presentations by the staff and myself and it will be official. After ten action packed days, the blood, sweat and (no) tears will have paid off because tomorrow the PADI IE will start, here on Koh Lanta! Come 16th January we should have a whole bunch of new PADI Instructors walking around!
Standing from left to right; Anand (Staff), Leandro, Axel, Soon, Ralf, myself and Kevin (Staff)
Kneeling from left to right; Andy, Melissa, Jeanne, Aurelie, Collin and Kevin
It has been loads of fun and the group had a lot of good and positive energy which made it very enjoyable to teach them and they have become a strong pack.
Stay tuned for updates on their PADI IE adventures over the next two days.
If you like to participate in one of my PADI IDC's, the next option is on Gili Air in Indonesia, starting 17th February, followed by 26th February on Koh Samui in Thailand and 14th March on Malapascua in the Philippines. See you there!
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
We're already half way and time is flying during the January 2013 PADI IDC on Koh Lanta. We must be having fun! Slowly things are coming together for the 10 candidates with busy behind them and a couple of more busy days ahead of them. Tomorrow more theory exams and the first Open Water presentations are scheduled.
In the pool, from left to right; Leandro, Aurelie, Jeanne, Collin, Ralf, Andy, myself, Kevin (MI), Axel, Kevin, Soon, Anand (IDCS) and Melissa
Now it's time to start fine tuning some things and before we realize, the PADI IE will be ready to kick off, this coming 15th and 16th January!
Come and see for yourself and join me in my up and coming PADI IDC programs starting 17th February on Gili Air in Indonesia, 26th February on Koh Samui in Thailand and 14th March on Malapascua in the Philippines and 7th April I'm back on Koh Lanta in Thailand.
See you there.
Sunday, January 6, 2013
Yes it is! A jubilee to celebrate, the first PADI IDC of the year 2013 and also the 100th PADI IDC I conduct as a PADI Course Director and for this special occasion, there are 10 IDC candidates and 2 Staff Instructors helping out with staffing! Bring the January PADI IDC on Koh Lanta in Thailand!
PADI IDC Koh Lanta, Thailand January 2103 Theory Exams
Kevin, Andreas, Collin, Melissa, Aurelie, Axel, Ralf, Leandro, Jeanne and Soon are forming this group and Kevin and Anand are helping out staffing this course.
PADI IDC Koh Lanta, Thailand January 2103 Rescue Exercise # 7
It's still early days but the group seems to be a good one and it looks like we will have some fun. That is, after their favorite part, being the Theory exams are done and over with this morning. After that it's off to the pool again to practice some skill circuits and some work shops about control and rescue courses.
If you're interested in participating in one of my IDC's, please contact me, the next program is scheduled to start 17th February on Gili Air in Indonesia, followed by an IDC on Koh Samui in Thailand starting 26th February and 14th March on Malapascua in the Philippines.