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Maverick Freediver Mike Wells joins RAID International Team

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RAID

Mike Wells, the former International Training Director of Freediving for Scuba Schools International (SSI), has joined RAID International.

Here is the official press release from RAID:

 

mike2

 

Mike Wells needs no introduction to the diving world as his records and achievements in the art of Freediving are well known globally. As the former SSI International Training Director of Freediving, Mike conceptualised and wrote the world’s first mainstream Freediving program and in doing so effectively transformed the once cult-like pastime consisting of just a handful of participants into a safety focused, structured, mainstream sport that is today accessible to the masses.

Amongst his many dive industry and personal achievements, Mike also cofounded the iconic World Series Freediving (WSF), providing participants of the sport at all levels access to a spirited and well-run competition platform.

In just a few short years, Mike’s achievements have resulted in thousands of new certifications globally and some respected dive industry observers rightly argue that Freediving is today diving’s largest growth area.

Mike’s passion for the sport has revitalised and provided new income streams for existing dive centres along with new specialised Freediving facilities now opening in popular Freediving destinations. This global Freediving industry has in turn influenced key manufacturers to create Freediving products to feed this new and highly exciting section of the market.

mike3When asked “why the change?” Mike said: “life is all about new challenges and my passion for Freediving has always been about making the sport accessible. So far, we have only dealt with the tip of the Freediving iceberg and I just know there are hundreds of thousands more people out there that want to get involved. Freediving is a rapidly evolving sport and therefore RAID’s focus on online training is just what is needed to take Freediving to the next level. Their revolutionary eTraining system makes the accessibility problem a no-brainer and we are not tied down to printed materials which means we can be extremely dynamic in the way we evolve the training as new research and techniques come to hand.

Importantly many of the RAID team are my friends who had the faith in me when we were getting this out of the ground.  RAID is a team of divers who understand exactly what is needed to drive the sport and give me the freedom to get the job done. I am excited about putting my ideas into a new program.

Mike has been appointed to the position of Director of Freediving for RAID International effective July 1st.

In commenting on the appointment, Paul Toomer, RAID International Director of Training said: “Having Mike join the RAID International Team demonstrates, and once again proves, that more and more of the industry visionaries are unafRAID of change so I am extremely thrilled to have Mike with us”.

Terry Cummins, RAID International Director of Business, said: “Mike joining our RAID Team is fantastic news for us and the dive industry generally. Bringing an icon like Mike on-board RAID clearly illustrates that RAID has all the core products within the dive industry extremely well covered; our department heads are very experienced people who really know what they are doing and further illustrates, along with all our other unique features, that RAID is certainly a viable alternative to other training agencies out there.”

Full details of RAID’s plans for a revolutionary new approach to Freediving  will be announced shortly. Watch this space……. 

For more information about RAID International, visit their website: www.diveraid.com

 

Gear News

New from Fourth Element: the RF2 free diving wetsuit

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The team at fourth element have introduced their latest freediving wetsuit, the RF2. Streamlined and high-performance, this two piece 6/5/4/mm suit has been developed for freedivers who want to enjoy maximum freedom and ultimate warmth.

Lined outer panels around the core, arms and legs provide durability, a Glideskin across the shoulders and the hood maximises hydrodynamics. This hybrid freediving wetsuit offers cool and cold water freedivers the freedom to explore their limits in comfort.

Director of fourth element, Paul Strike said, “We’ve designed this suit with the consultation of professional freedivers, instructors and with the knowledge of freedive suit specialists. The RF2 brings together fourth element’s knowledge of thermal protection with freediving expertise at the top of the sport to create a high performance recreational suit.”

The suit is both comfortable and practical, being more durable than traditional smoothskin suits whilst retaining excellent stretch and form fitting design. The inner of the suit has a smooth cell Metalite coating; this provides extra warmth retention and is more robust than traditional open cell.

Daan Verhoeven, Freediving Cameraman said, “The RF2 is possibly the best off-the peg suit I’ve ever tried. As soon as I got in the water, I instantly forgot the suit. I was just comfortable and could move without anything pinching or water coming in.”

Features

  • Streamline cut optimising glide
  • 5mm comfort, flexibility and warmth
  • Open cell interior, lined exterior
  • Smoothskin outer hood and shoulders for extra hydrodynamics
  • Beavertail closure
  • Supratex seat panel for extra durability

RF2 Hooded Jacket and Leggings are available in sizes S – XL.

RF2 Hooded Jacket 6/5/4mm RRP: £229.95 GBP / €275.00 EUR

RF2 Leggings 5/4mm RRP: £149.95 / €179.00 EUR

Find out more at www.fourthelement.com

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Marine Life & Conservation

Parineeti Chopra teams up with PADI to create Ocean Change

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PADI® is thrilled to announce an exceptional PADI AmbassaDiver™: Indian actress, singer and PADI Advanced Open Water Diver Parineeti Chopra.

“A PADI AmbassaDiver is someone who is passionate about using their force for good to encourage others to protect our blue planet,” says Kristin Valette Wirth, Chief Brand and Membership Officer. “We could not have found a more respected and authentic partner as Ms. Chopra, a long time ocean lover, to advance our shared mission of saving the ocean. She is unmatched as a shining example of how to protect what you love – and inspire others to do the same.”

Chopra, who has always loved the ocean, experienced the magic beneath the surface in 2013 when she took her first breath underwater in Bali. As soon as she surfaced from that dive, she was hooked – and protecting the ocean became very personal for her, receiving her PADI Open Water Diver certification later that year in Palau. Since then, she has inspired others around the world, from her family and friends to fans in India– to try scuba diving so they can join her in seeking adventure and saving the ocean.

“The first time I came up to the surface after diving, I was crying because it was such a life-changing experience,” says Ms. Chopra. “It is now something I can’t live without. I make sure I do a diving trip every three months despite my work schedule because it is my form of meditation. And it is the place I am immensely passionate about protecting.”

“We are all equal underwater and all speak the same language. Over the years I have seen the changes that have taken place beneath the surface. During my time as a brand ambassador for Tourism Australia, I witnessed the bleaching and damage that has occurred to the Great Barrier Reef.  I was so sad to see this and am now committed to being a diver with a purpose. I have also seen first-hand how marine reserves, like the ones in Sipadan, Malaysia and Palau, prove how valuable marine protected areas are. As a PADI Diver, I want to make sure that our entire blue planet gets the protection it deserves.” continues Ms. Chopra.

With over 67 million social media followers and having recently starred in the Netflix movie The Girl on the Train, Chopra joins an elite group of celebrity influencers determined to take personal action and create real change for healthier oceans. Spending nearly all her free time diving around the world, Chopra shares her love for the ocean with her fans, as diving is an important part of her life that allows her to return to nature and reset. She will work with PADI to encourage others to experience the beautiful world underwater as PADI Divers and join her in helping to achieve balance between humanity and the ocean.

“PADI created the AmbassaDiver programmeme to support extraordinary divers who dedicate their lives to illuminating the path that leads from curiosity, exploration, and discovery to understanding, stewardship and action. Ms. Chopra is playing a very important role in ocean conservation, lighting the way for others to become divers themselves and mobilising communities worldwide to seek adventure and save the ocean with her,” continues Valette Wirth.

Ms. Chopra has big plans for 2022 – including becoming a real-life PADI Mermaid and taking part in citizen science projects during her dive trips around the world. Follow Chopra’s dive adventures, projects and hands-on conservation efforts with PADI on her Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

To learn more about Chopra and the rest of the PADI AmbassaDiver team visit www.padi.com/ambassadivers.

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A luxurious dive resort in the heart of Lembeh Strait. Enjoy refined services while exploring the rich waters of Indonesia.

The resort is nestled around an ocean front deck and swimming-pool (with pool-bar) which is the perfect place to enjoy a sundowner cocktail at the end of a busy day of critter-diving.

All accommodation is full board and includes three sumptuous meals a day. Breakfast and lunch are buffet meals and in the evening dining is a la carte.

Book and stay before the end of June and benefit from no single supplements in all room types!

Booking deadline: Subject to availability – book and stay before end of June 2022

Call Diverse Travel on 01473 852002 or email info@diversetravel.co.uk.

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