Category: News

August board Meeting

The Aida Board met on Saturday , August 9 2014 via Skype conference call.

The first item discussed was AIDA’s financial status, as presented by Kimmo and it was noted again that the old PayPal account should no longer receive payments; instructors will be notified to send payments only to the new PayPal account. AIDA Nationals: when making payment to AIDA International by PayPal, please use only the following payment information: bank @ aidainternational.org.

The Board reviewed a proposed competition in Crimea, which was sanctioned by AIDA Russia, but opposed by AIDA Ukraine. The Board noted that the United Nations and IOC currently recognize Crimea as a region of Ukraine; accordingly, the Board voted unanimously to remove the proposed competition from the AIDA calendar unless and until AIDA Ukraine sanctions it.

The Board reviewed SSI’s recent appointment of former AIDA Education Officer Lotta Ericson as Freediving Training Director of SSI (http://www.divessi.com/news/1213), noting issues relating to the protection of AIDA intellectual property (primarily in AIDA’s education system). The Board voted unanimously to terminate Ms. Ericson’s status as AIDA instructor/instructor trainer, and access to the AIDA’s Education Online System; this termination also applies to Ms. Ericson’s business partner, Linda Paganelli. The Board noted that during the first 7 months of 2014, together they had certified only three AIDA students; accordingly, access to AIDA’s systems was unlikely to be used for valid training purposes. The Board also voted unanimously to maintain both Ms. Ericson’s and Ms. Paganelli’s current AIDA judge status, with the following caveats to prevent possible favoritism toward SSI or SSI‐affiliated athletes:  (1) neither may judge at AIDA World Championships; (2) before acting as senior judge for any AIDA world record performance, each must request advance approval in writing from AIDA International, not less than two weeks prior to the performance (with respect to the latter, the only records currently possible to break in the Dahab Blue Hole­‐max depth 90m­‐is woman’s CNF; accordingly, the Board has pre‐approved both judges for performances by recent woman’s CNF record holders Natalia Molchanova and Ashley Futral).

The next topic was the selection of judges for a World Record attempt. By email vote, in July the Board appointed the following judges for the upcoming Winram record event (30 August – 6 September): Senior Judge, Petar Bojovic; Junior Judge, Radoslaw Gaca. Due to issues relating to Mr. Gaca’s availability at the event site on the event days, the Board voted unanimously to replace Mr. Gaca with Denys Rylov as Junior Judge for the event. Robert King and Petar Bojovic recused themselves from this vote therefore the vote was done by the other Board members.

The Board reviewed results of the recent vote on the Safety Proposal, noting that numerous changes were approved, and that the items on feet first descents and consequences of blackouts were not approved. The Board would like to thank all Assembly members and members of Nationals that took part in the review of and vote on this Proposal, and also the safety work group that prepared the proposal: these changes respond to the risks identified with the fatal accident of diver Nick Mevoli last November, and should increase safety for AIDA divers worldwide. The Board noted that approved changes will become effective on 1 January 2015, and will incorporate them into AIDA’s Competition Rules by that time. Please note that there will be NO CHANGES affecting athletes at the upcoming 2014 AIDA Team World Championships in Sardinia; though the AIDA Board will work with the organizer to implement some organizational items (e.g. use of Sonar and pocket masks), there will be no rules changes that will apply to athletes. At least two Nationals requested that with respect to approved item #4 (“consequences of squeezes”), that AIDA International provide guidance to organizers on how to implement the changes effectively and uniformly. This recommendation is well taken, and AIDA’s Medical and Science Officer will be working on a set of guidelines for working with athletes with squeezes by end of year.

The Board noted that Item 1 of the Safety Proposal (“limitation of announcements”) resulted in a tie (10 for, 10 against); in accordance with AIDA’s Statutes, this item will be sent back to the Assembly for revote (with the proposed changes for the Competition Rules). The Board also noted input from Nationals on this item, however, will be included in the revote. First, if an organizer wishes to limit announcements, the limitation will be to no greater than 10m below the depth done in training (previously, announcements could be limited to no greater than 3m below that depth). Second, recent dives will be considered even if not done onsite or on the ranking list—essentially allowing the second option, which is the athlete stating what depth he/she has done, and who the safety diver/witness was.
The Board voted unanimously to reflect the above input from Nationals when the item is sent for revote.

Kimmo and Robert reported on progress on the AIDA Incident Reporting System; Per Westin, also working on this project, was unavailable due to a scheduling conflict. Per and Robert are working with developer Simo Kurra to prepare a prototype version of the Organizer Reporting Form for demonstration in Sardinia. The organizer reporting system will be mandatory—i.e. organizers are required to report serious incidents—and this component should allow for statistically based reporting of incidents (i.e. number of incidents of each type per 1000 starts). Work is also progressing on an optional athlete reporting system that will not be statistically based (i.e. it will not be possible to determine the frequency of incidents in detail), but which may be useful in identifying types of incidents warranting additional attention. For both systems, personally identifying information (e.g. name) will not be captured.

Jean­‐Pol Francois , Aida Education Officer , reported on safety‐related updates to the AIDA education system. Jean‐Pol noted that safety updates on the 1* and 2* courses should be ready by this fall; revisions to the AIDA Safety Diver course should be ready by late fall as well.

The Board reviewed matters relating to the 2014 AIDA Team World Championships, to be held in September in Sardinia, Italy. The organizer has set up a website and Facebook page for the competition:

➢ www.blueworldchamp.it
➢ www.facebook.com/blueworldchamp

Please take note of these pages. Aida will also be posting on the Aida Facebook page unofficial ‘live results’ as the dives take place. Robert reported that the Assembly has approved two courses to be given in Sardinia: a judge reactivation course, and a judge continuing education course. The AIDA judge reactivation course will allow inactive AIDA judges to reactivate their judge status (at a nominal fee). AIDA believes that reactivation of inactive judges, without the expense of retaking a judge course, is important for judges in a number of countries. AIDA will also offer a continuing judge education course (free of charge). The AIDA Judge Continuing Education Course will provide AIDA judges with important information on judging at higher‐level events, and common judging issues generally. AIDA believes that continuing education is critical for the training and promotion of judges. Experience points will be granted to judges attending this course.  AIDA Board will also host an open meeting in Sardinia, like the open meetings that took place in Belgrade and Kalamata last year. All persons will be invited; Board members will review several important items, and other items will be discussed as requested by participants.

Please note that the AIDA Board is accepting proposals from organizers to host the 2015 AIDA Pool and Depth World Championships. Please request any organizers that may be interested in hosting a pool world championship in the spring (April-­June) or a depth world championship in the fall (August – November) to forward proposals and questions to board@aidainternational.org. The Board voted to require that all proposals be delivered not later than 30 September, in order to allow them to be finalized and sent to the Assembly for vote in October.

Kimmo reported on a new Assembly web tool, to allow members to update their contact information: similar to functionalities in the EOS and JOS systems. Kimmo also reported that the IT group is working on a new email distribution system (to replace the Yahoo Groups service): the Yahoo email service is experiencing significant issues (including dropping members, and not delivering messages and/or attachments). This project is aimed at implementing a new service to solve those issues, and at better integrating Member data with the current AIDA web‐based tools (EOS, CARS and JOS). Note: If you are not receiving emails from or are unable to send them to the Assembly group list, please contact AIDA Secretary Carla Hanson (secretary@aidainternational.org) so we can keep you copied until the new system is implemented.

The Board voted unanimously to recommend to the Assembly that organizations in the following countries be considered for Observer Membership: Slovak Republic; Iceland; Peru; Latvia; and the Philippines. Each of these organizations meets the requirements for Observer membership (including statutes, and number of members). The Board also voted unanimously to recommend to the Assembly that the following Observer members be upgraded to National membership: Romania; Malaysia. Each of these organizations meets the requirements for National memberships (including statutes, number of members, instructors and judges). The Board plans to ask the Assembly to vote on these membership items in October, in connection with the vote on 2015 World Championship locations.

The Board is pleased that three observer members—South Korea, Romania and Malaysia—have grown to meet the standards to be upgraded to full National members. We remain concerned, however, that most observer members have not demonstrated significant growth. A larger number of observer members over a period of years have not been able to reach 25 members, one instructor and two judges—the minimum requirements for an AIDA National. AIDA International’s mission is the development of freediving world wide, and we see the development of organizations in countries without AIDA Nationals as a key component of that development. The failure of most observers to grow into Nationals is a concern for AIDA. We plan to review this matter further, and recommend to the Assembly actions that may be taken to better promote growth. Such actions may include AIDA International sending instructors, instructor trainers and judge instructors to countries with observer members, as well as to other countries with or without AIDA organizations, who request access to instruction in order to develop the sport of freediving.

If you would like further information on these or other topics, please do not hesitate to contact Kimmo, Robert, or any other Board member.

AIDA Board

 

Board Notes July 2014

The Aida International Board met on 6 July via Skype. Many topics were discussed in the very productive and lengthy meeting.

The Board reviewed AIDA’s financial status, as presented by Kimmo. It was also noted again that the old PayPal account should no longer receive payments; instructors will be notified to send payments only to the new PayPal account. AIDA Nationals: when making payment to AIDA International by PayPal, please use only the following payment information: bank @ aidainternational.org.

The Assembly completed a vote on the order of addressing proposals on Safety, Rules and Judge IOP, deciding to address Safety first, then Rules, and finally Judge IOP. The comment period on the Safety proposal is scheduled to end on 15 July, and the Board plans to present the Safety proposal to the Assembly for vote in late July. The Board discussed a proposal from one National to prohibit head-up descents (occasionally used for FIM). The Safety work group had also discussed this item, and since a National has also recommended a change on this point, the Safety proposal will include a “line item” vote to determine if the change should be made.

The comment periods for the Rules and IOP proposals finished on 30 June. Those comments will be reviewed, and votes prepared on those proposals (to start after the Safety proposal is completed).

Robert updated the Board on the Safety Enhancement Project. Jean‐Pol reported on updates to the AIDA education system to address safety related items. Jean-­Pol also that safety updates on the 1* and 2* courses should be ready by this fall; revisions to the AIDA Safety Diver course should be ready by late fall as well.
The work group is also reviewing changes to the AIDA Safety Guidelines, and will address those in the near future. Robert noted that several doctors (who are also freedivers) in the United States have been working on a related project (including training scenarios for safety divers), and that work group members may work with them to share ideas.

Per Westin , Medical and Science officer, updated the Board on a web‐based Incident Reporting System, to be used to collect and analyze data on accidents and other incidents in competitions (likely on a mandatory basis) and in freediving generally (on a recommended basis). A work group (Kimmo, Per and Robert) is working with an experienced specialist on this project to have a prototype system available in the next few months.

The Board reviewed matters relating to the 2014 AIDA Team World Championships, to be held in September in Sardinia, Italy. The organizer has set up a website and Facebook page for the competition:

➢ www.blueworldchamp.it
➢ www.facebook.com/blueworldchamp

Please communicate these pages to your athletes.

AIDA Judge Responsible Petar Bojovic visited the competition sight in late June to review logistics, housing, safety and other matters. Petar noted the hotel appears to be very good, with more than adequate meeting rooms and other facilities. Petar reviewed the pool, which is 25m, and of variable depth; the organizer is looking to provide a means to make the depth uniform. Petar also reviewed safety and evacuation items with respect to the CWT venue, including medical and hyperbaric support. Report of this visit has been published at Aida Facebook wall.

As in Kalamata, AIDA will have Carla Hanson on sight in Cagliari to manage media matters, and Kimmo to manage general AIDA matters. The Board voted to purchase a tablet (mobile capable iPad mini, with cables and adapters) to help Carla create and post real time content on Facebook and AIDA’s website, at a cost not to exceed EUR 700; this tablet will also be used at other competitions to enhance media capabilities. The Board also voted to allocate EUR 800 for travel and lodging costs, to have a dedicated videographer/photographer (Daan Verhoeven) on site to provide still and video images, and to help write content (this amount will also cover license rights to content).

In regards to the judges at the WC ; the Board voted to elect the following jury officers for the 2014 AIDA Team World Championships: President, Petar Bojovic; Vice President, Ute Gessmann. Robert reported that the Assembly approved additional assistant judges for the 2014 AIDA Team World Championships (a total of two per elected judge), and noted that the Board previously approved subsidizing travel costs for the four assistant judges traveling from other continents. The Board noted that this is a first step toward providing additional training and experience for judges. AIDA’s goal is to have at least one senior judge (Level B or higher) in each country, or one judge instructor in each country (or within a reasonable distance). If your National has input on this judge-training initiative, please forward to the AIDA Board (board@aidainternational.org). The Board also voted to have a continuing education course for judges in Sardinia; this course is intended to be the first of a series, to help judges gain experience, and prepare them for promotion. Relatedly, the Board discussed the use of judge training videos, to demonstrate common judging issues (such as surface protocol, touching, and grabbing). The Board will review further, and may have such video prepared in 2015 (or possibly late 2014).

The Board discussed ways to re-certify judges that have become inactive due to lack of recent judging; Kimmo, Petar and Jean‐Pol will develop a proposal for an online re-certification course, to be used in connection with assistant judging with senior judge(s); this proposal will be reviewed with the Assembly when ready (likely later this year). AIDA’s goal is to allow re-certification of inactive judges (who have already taken and paid for a judge course), without having to pay again for a full judge course. Relatedly, the Board voted to plan for a refresher course in Sardinia, so inactive judges could “re-activate” for a reasonable cost (e.g. EUR 30-­50), rather than having to pay again for a complete judge course (and retake the entire course, which appears unreasonable).

In addition, the Board will host an open meeting in Sardinia, like the open meetings that took place in Belgrade and Kalamata last year. All persons will be invited; Board members will review several important items, and other items will be discussed as requested by participants. The Board will also host a meeting of Assembly representatives who are present in Sardinia; this will not be a meeting of the Assembly (as not all members will be present), but rather a chance for Assembly and Board members to meet informally, and for Assembly members to raise issues that may be important for their Nationals.

The AIDA Board is accepting proposals from organizers to host the 2015 AIDA Pool and Depth World Championships. Please request any organizers that may be interested in hosting a pool world championship in the spring (April-­June) or a depth world championship in the fall (August – November) to forward proposals and questions to board@aidainternational.org. The Board voted to request that all proposals be delivered not later than 30 September, in order to allow them to be finalized and sent to the Assembly for vote this fall.

The Finnish Diving Federation has notified AIDA of its interest in hosting the 2016 AIDA Pool World Championships. As you may recall, the Assembly voted to change the scheduling of AIDA World Championships beginning in 2016, so that each even numbered year would have Pool and Team competitions (in spring and fall, respectively), and each odd numbered year would have the Depth competition. In order to work with the owners of pool and lodging facilities, the FDF has indicated that it would like to provide its proposal to AIDA early next year, with a request for vote on the location of the 2016 AIDA Pool World Championships in spring of 2015. The Board reviewed this request, and notes that it appears to be in AIDA’s best interests to review and vote on proposals for that competition next spring; this would also allow additional time for the organizers and athletes to line up sponsors.

Robert reported on June the meeting of the EUF in Frankfurt, Germany. This meeting was highly informative, both with respect to the regulatory framework in the European Union, and as to governance best practices among diving federations (many of whom share challenges similar to AIDA with a federated model). A CMAS representative reported on restructuring efforts currently being undertaken by CMAS; these efforts are intended to allow CMAS to comply with standards and best practices for international associations. As part of this restructuring, CMAS is moving toward a model where each national entity must represent a majority of athletes in its country. This is an important item for international federations, such as AIDA, whose mission is the development of freediving worldwide: having each national organization represent a majority of athletes in a country would increase AIDA’s ability to develop the sport of freediving. Separately, CMAS is developing an incident reporting system, as is AIDA. We believe that an incident reporting system can be an effective tool to gather and review information, in order to spot trends and prevent incidents before they become serious.

Kimmo reported on a new Assembly web tool, to allow members to update their contact information: similar to functionalities in the EOS and JOS systems. Kimmo also reported that the IT group is working on a new email distribution system (replacing the Yahoo Groups service): the Yahoo email service is experiencing significant issues (including regularly dropping members, and not delivering messages). This project is aimed at implementing a new service to solve those issues, and at better integrating Member data with the current AIDA web-­based tools (EOS, CARS and JOS). Note: If you are not receiving emails from or are unable to send them to the Assembly group list, please contact AIDA Secretary Carla Hanson (secretary@aidainternational.org) so we can keep you copied until the new system is implemented.

If you would like further information on these or other topics, please do not hesitate to contact Kimmo, Robert, or any other Board member.

 

AIDA Board

 

Board Notes for meeting on May 17, 2014

The Board reviewed financial matters presented by Kimmo. Robert noted that the Assembly unanimously approved AIDA’s financial statements for 2013, which had been prepared by AIDA’s outside accountants Pluscom.

It was noted again that the old PayPal account should no longer receive payments; instructors will be notified to send payments only to the new PayPal account. AIDA Nationals: when making payment to AIDA International by PayPal, please use only the following payment information: bank @ aidainternational.org.

The Board discussed the proposed updates to the Rules and IOP, which are currently with the Assembly for review and vote. Kimmo and Robert noted that there has been significant feedback, primarily in two areas. First, a number of Nationals stated they need additional time to review the materials; this is particularly important for Nationals that must translate the materials prior to review. In order to give Nationals additional time to review the proposals, the Board decided that that (regardless of the result of the vote) Nationals may provide comments on the proposals until 30 June. The Board will collect those comments, and by 31 July send “line item” votes to the Assembly to address those items; that vote will remain open for at least one month. More time will be given if needed by the Assembly. Second, Assembly members identified two items in the Rules proposal that would impact some Nationals’ ability to host competitions posting results to the ranking list. One is the requirement that all competitions posting results to the ranking list have at least one Senior Judge (Level D) or higher; the 2009 Rules did not have that requirement. After discussion, the Board agreed and voted to recommend that the Assembly remove the “D Judge” requirement; this “line item” vote will go to the Assembly around 1 June (if either the Rules or IOP proposals are approved). The other is the requirement that competitions have a minimum number of competitors to post results to the ranking list, and to have “world record” status. After discussion, the Board agreed and voted to recommend that the Assembly remove the minimum athlete requirement with respect to ranking list performances (it would still apply to world records done in competition); this “line item” vote will go to the Assembly around 1 June (if the Rules proposal is approved).

Separately, the Board reviewed an item in the revised IOP proposal. Currently, the proposal permits Executive Judges (Level C) and higher to have assistant judges; this appears to have been an error, with the correct requirement being that Senior Judges (Level D) or above may have assistant judges (in either case, the mentor must be more senior than the assistant judge). The Board voted to recommend that the Assembly correct this requirement; this “line item” vote will go to the Assembly around 1 June.

Robert updated the Board on the Safety Enhancement Project. The work group (medical doctors Per Vestin and Johan Dahlström, medical researcher Erika Schagatay, organizers Will Trubridge and Stavros Kastrinakis, and Board members Antero Joki and Robert King) completed a proposal of changes to the AIDA Competition Rules to increase athlete safety. The Board reviewed the proposal, and voted to approve it and recommend it to the Assembly. The workgroup is also reviewing changes to the AIDA Safety Guidelines, and will address those in the near future. Robert noted that several doctors (who are also freedivers) in the United States have been working on a related project (including work on training scenarios for safety divers), and that workgroup members may work with them to share ideas.

Kimmo updated the Board on a web-­based Incident Reporting System, which will be used to collect and analyze data on accidents in competitions (likely on a mandatory basis) and in competitions (on a recommended basis). AIDA is working with an experienced developer on this project, and expects to have a prototype system available in the next few months.

Kimmo reported on a new Assembly web tool, which will allow members to update their contact information: similar to functionalities in the EOS and JOS systems.
Kimmo also reported that the IT group is working on a new email distribution system (replacing the Yahoo Groups service): the Yahoo email service is experiencing significant issues (including regularly dropping members, and not delivering messages). This project is aimed at implementing a new service to solve those issues, and at better integrating Member data with the current AIDA web‐based tools (EOS, CARS and JOS). Note: If you are not receiving emails from or are unable to send them to the Assembly group list, please contact AIDA Secretary Carla Hanson (secretary@aidainternational.org) so we can keep you copied until the new system is implemented.

The Board reviewed matters relating to the 2014 AIDA Team World Championships, to be held in September in Sardinia, Italy. The organizer has set up a website and Facebook page for the competition:

  • www.blueworldchamp.it
  • www.facebook.com/blueworldchamp

Please communicate these pages to your athletes. AIDA Judge Responsible Petar Bojovic will visit the competition sight in late June (during an event there) to review logistics, housing, safety and other matters. As in Kalamata, AIDA will have Carla Hanson on sight in Cagliari to manage media matters, and Kimmo to manage general AIDA matters. The Board voted to approve airfare for Carla and Kimmo to Cagliari, not to exceed in aggregate EUR 1900 (the organizer is providing accommodations).

The Board reviewed candidates for assistant judges at the 2014 AIDA Team World Championships. AIDA Judge Responsible Petar Bojovic was unavailable (due to severe flooding in Serbia, and a state of emergency in that country), and a final decision on assistant judges will await his availability: most candidates will be accepted. Nonetheless, Petar provided significant input in advance, and the Board voted to approve a number of assistant judges for the 2014 AIDA Team World Championships: a complete list of assistant judges will be posted after Petar’s return.

In addition, as previously noted the Board has determined that mentoring and continuing education will play a larger role in judge development going forward (please see below), and in order to help judges from other continents meet the expenses of travel to Sardinia, the Board voted to subsidize room and board for four assistant judges, each of whom have demonstrated significant commitment to AIDA, and who must travel from other continents. The cost of this subsidy will be approximately €600 per assistant judge (10 nights at €60 per night). The four assistant judges to be subsidized are: Gabriela Contreras (Venezuela); Esteban Darhanpe (Argentina/Honduras); Junko Kitahama (Japan); John Wright (New Zealand). The Board will review the value of this program, and expects to continue it next year (with 2-‐4 assistant judges from distant continents to be subsidized per competition, depending on qualified candidates). If your National has input on this program, please reply to the AIDA Board (board@aidainternational.org).

2015 AIDA Individual World Championships. The AIDA Board is accepting proposals from organizers to host the 2015 AIDA Pool and Depth World Championships. Please request any organizers that may be interested in hosting a pool world championship in the spring (April-‐June) or a depth world championship in the fall (August – November) to forward proposals and questions to board@aidainternational.org.

The Board reviewed the application from South Korea to be raised from Observer Member to National Member. South Korea has met all requirements for National membership, and the Board voted to approve the application, and to recommend it to the Assembly for approval (only the Assembly can vote to approve new AIDA members).

The Board reviewed a number of items relating to the AIDA education system. The Board voted unanimously to approve candidate Noh Myoung (from South Korea) as an AIDA Instructor Trainer. Jean­‐Pol reviewed issues with SSI students wishing to cross over to the AIDA program, noting that many such students are not sufficiently skilled to cross over under the existing system. Jean‐Pol will review the cross over levels for SSI, and determine if changes are warranted.

Separately, Jean‐Pol reviewed a number of interesting proposals for instructor tools and services. He will prepare more details and costs for each for further review.
Robert will attend the semiannual meeting of the EUF in Frankfurt, Germany on 14 June, on behalf of Kimmo (who will judging an AIDA competition). Robert will be in Switzerland at that time, so travel expense will be limited.

If you would like further information on these or other topics, please do not hesitate to contact Kimmo, Robert, or any other Board member.

AIDA Board

 

Natalia just keeps going deeper!

Natalia 70m15 May 2014; Dahab, Egypt at the Russian National Depth Competition, Natalia Molchanova lengthened her own record in Constant Weight No-fins to 70m. The dive time was 3:30. Natalia currently holds all the records in the Aida Women’s division except for no-limits. Congratulations for another great accomplishment.

photo by Betty Nandi

 

Board Notes April 2014

The Aida Board met via Skype on April 5. The first topic was financial matters presented by Kimmo and Ben. Robert reviewed financial statements for 2013, prepared by AIDA’s outside accountants: Pluscom. Robert noted that he had reviewed the financial statements and AIDA’s bank statements on a line-by-line basis for 2013, and verified all material payments and expenses. The Board voted unanimously to approve those statements, and to recommend their approval to the Assembly. Robert will send the financial statements to the Assembly for review and approval in the next week.

It was noted again that the old PayPal account should no longer receive payments; instructors will be notified to send payments only to the new PayPal account. AIDA Nationals: when making payment to AIDA International by PayPal, please use only the following payment information: bank @ aidainternational.org.

Non-Executive Officers. The Board was disappointed to hear that that Media Officer Chloé Villaume resigned: she started a new job with a heavy time commitment, and does not currently have extra time to volunteer to AIDA. We are currently seeking a person with a marketing /media background to fill this position. Please contact Kimmo or Carla if you are interested in helping Aida in this capacity.

Robert updated the Board on the Safety Enhancement Project. The work group (medical doctors Per Vestin and Johan Dahlström, medical researcher Erika Schagatay, organizers Will Trubridge and Stavros Kastrinakis, and Board members Antero Joki and Robert King) is currently refining a number of proposed changes to the AIDA Competition Rules. When complete, the Board will review those proposals, and ask the Assembly to review and vote on them (likely in May). The work group is also reviewing changes to the AIDA Safety Guidelines, and will complete those when the proposals for the Competition Rules are complete.

Jean-Pol updated the Board regarding progress on updating AIDA’s course offerings regarding risks of squeezes. Kimmo updated the Board on a web-based Incident Reporting System,  which will be used to electronically collect and analyze data on accidents in competitions (likely on a mandatory basis) and in training (on a recommended basis).

Kimmo and Rob briefed the Board on a review of branding and trademarks for AIDA which will be implemented as soon as possible.

Carla and Rob reported on a new Assembly web tool, which will allow members to automatically update their contact information: similar to functionalities in the EOS and JOS systems. Carla also reported that the IT group is looking to implement a new email distribution system (replacing the Yahoo Groups tool). This project is aimed at remedying a number of reliability and quality issues that have been identified with the Yahoo tool, and at better integrating Member data with the current AIDA web-based tools (EOS, CARS and JOS). Please note that the currently Yahoo Groups list is experiencing a number of issues, including non-delivery of emails to certain users, and deletion of some users entirely. If you believe you may not be getting emails, please contact AIDA Secretary Carla Hanson (secretary@aidainternational.org) so we can keep you copied until the new system is implemented.

The Board voted unanimously to approve implementation of an upgrade to the Joomla CMS (content management system), in an amount up to EUR 2000; this upgrade is required for maintenance of the EOS and CARS tools, and the AIDA website.

The Board reviewed matters relating to the 2014 AIDA Team World Championships, to be held in September in Sardinia, Italy. The organizer has set up a website and Facebook page for the competition:

  • www.blueworldchamp.it
  • www.facebook.com/blueworldchamp

Please communicate these pages to your athletes. The organizer is planning to use real time video capability for the depth event, and we are planning to work with a professional photographer/videographer to provide same-day posts for AIDA.

In May, AIDA Judge Responsible Petar Bojovic will request candidates for assistant judges at the 2014 AIDA Team World Championships. Please have interested candidates reply to Petar’s request to apply. Relatedly, AIDA has received input from a number of Nationals stating that it has been difficult to get judges promoted to senior levels, in part due travel expenses to World Championships (to get high level judging experience). In order to address that issue, the Board discussed the possibility of subsidizing expenses for committed judges wanting to assistant judge at AIDA World Championships. The Board will continue to review this issue, and may offer a small number of judges (perhaps two this year) a subsidy covering room and board in Sardinia, if they are required to travel to Europe from another continent (e.g. Asia). If successful, the Board may continue this program next year. If your National has input on this subject, or if you have a judge who may wish to participate, please reply to the AIDA Board (board@aidainternational.org).

The Board reviewed a number of items relating to the AIDA education system. The Board voted unanimously to approve candidate Remy Dubern as an AIDA Instructor Trainer. The Board also reviewed instructor insurance for the United States and Canada; Carla Hanson will provide an update on the AIDA website regarding how instructors in the United States and Canada can be insured. European instructors and freedivers (excluding competitive freediving) may already obtain DAN insurance.

The Board voted unanimously to sanction pool competitions in Mexico and in the United Arab Emirates: countries that have no National. AIDA International will review requests to sanction competitions in countries without an AIDA National, and will approve such request when possible. Any group ( including Observer members) without full National status wishing to host a competition should contact Ute (sportofficer@aidainternational.org) to ask for approval.

Antero and Rob provided an update on the project to update the AIDA Competition Rules, and the Board reviewed draft revisions to the Rules. A clean up version, intended mainly to clean up ambiguities and resolve known problem areas, is projected to go to the Assembly for review and approval in late April. In addition, several larger issues (e.g. possible changes to the grab rules) will also be sent to the Assembly for individual line-item review and vote, prior to inclusion in the competition rules. As the Judge IOP and Competition Rules are related, these revisions may be presented together to the Assembly.

Further Information. If you would like further information on these or other topics, please do not hesitate to contact Kimmo, Robert, or any other Board member. You may also contact your National representative to comment on any subject related to Aida.

AIDA Board