Category: Board

Board Meeting October

The Aida International Board met via Skype on October 11,2014. The following is a summation of the topics discussed.

The Board reviewed AIDA’s financial status, as presented by Kimmo and Ben. 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 the 2014 AIDA Team World Championships, recently completed in Cagliari, Italy. The Board noted the exceptional work by the organizer—Ricky Mura and Blue World Apnea—to make the competition a success. The Board also thanked Judge Responsible Petar Bojovic (Jury President) and Sport Officer Ute Gessmann (Jury Vice President), for helping the competition run smoothly and successfully. The Board noted that not all athletes (especially those used to competing with other agencies) are familiar with AIDA Competition Rules; because of this, the Board plans to have important AIDA’s Rules reviewed at the start of future AIDA World Championships, so athletes from other agencies are familiar with them. AIDA held it’s first AIDA Judge continuing education course in Cagliari: presented by Sport Officer Ute Gessmann, Judge Responsible Petar Bojovic, Secretary Carla Hanson, Technical Officer Antero Joki, and Vice President Rob King. The response to this course was highly positive, and the Board plans to hold more of these courses in the future. AIDA paid for room and board for three assistant judges from other continents—Junko Kitahama (Japan), Gaby Contreras (Venezuela), and John Wright (New Zealand)—in order to allow judges from other continents to afford to travel to AIDA World Championships to Assistant Judge. Feedback on this program was also positive, and AIDA plans to continue assisting committed judges from other continents to gain experience needed for promotion.

As is now customary at AIDA World Championships, there was an Open Meeting, where athletes and others could voice their ideas to the Board. In addition, the Board reviewed the safety changes to the AIDA Competition Rules passed by the Assembly in July, and demonstrated AIDA’s web based Incident Reporting System (which will go live in January). Feedback on AIDA’s media coverage—including real time posting of results by Carla Hanson and photos and videos by Daan Verhoeven—was also highly positive. AIDA plans to continue and enhance media coverage of future AIDA World Championships.

Kimmo noted that the 2014 AIDA Officer Vote will begin in late November. Offices up for election this year are: Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, and Sport Officer. Candidates interested in running for any of these offices should send a CV to Kimmo Lahtinen (president@aidainternational.org) not later than 1 November 2014. Kimmo then said that seven Nationals had requested a special Assembly vote to void the recent Assembly vote on the Competition Rules update. As that number meets the minimum required to call a special Assembly vote, that vote will take place in early November. This means that the proposal to amend the Judge IOP (i) to permit judge promotion (the 2009 IOP prevents judge promotion to Level B or higher, by requiring World Record points which are impossible for most judges to obtain), and (ii) to allow easier reactivation for inactive judges, will be delayed until 2015. We apologize for this delay, and understand the need to fix the Judge IOP and AIDA’s judge promotion system.

Kimmo proposed a new process to update AIDA’s Competition Rules for 2015. Kimmo noted that the last time the Rules were updated­‐in 2009­‐ Board members voted in the Assembly (some with 2 or 3 votes); so the Board proposed Rules changes, and had the Assembly approve them. In 2010, Kimmo proposed changes to AIDA’s Statutes (adopted by the Assembly) that stopped Board members from voting in the Assembly. Since the Board no longer controls Assembly votes (since 2010), AIDA needs a new process for updating the Rules. Kimmo has been working with Chris Marshall (New Zealand), Pavlina Prochazkova (Czech Republic) and Jody Fisher (Australia) to pilot a new process, in which the Rules will be posted on an online document management tool: Google Docs. Each National will be able to comment on the Rules: items it wants changed, deleted or added. A smaller group of representatives, led by Technical Officer Antero Joki, will review comments, and work on items supported by a number of Nationals. Rules updates would be smaller but more regular: likely a small number of changes voted on each year, to become effective 1 January of the next year (with emergency changes still possible if needed). Kimmo will present the Assembly with more detail on this process in the coming weeks.

Kimmo, Per and Robert reported on progress on the AIDA Incident Reporting System. Robert demonstrated this system in Cagliari at both the AIDA Open Meeting and Continuing Education Course, and the reception was very positive. In response to comments from Nationals ,mostly regarding privacy and anonymity , several modifications will be made prior to rolling out this system on 1 January.

The Safety Proposal changes to the AIDA Competition Rules will take effect on 1 January. Dr. Per Westin and Dr. Kerry Hollowell will prepare guidelines for organizers and competition doctors, on how to evaluate the severity of squeezes (this was requested by several Nationals). Separately, Erika Schagatay has committed to have an initial draft of the study on chest squeezes and freediving ready by end of year; this study was funded in part by a contribution by AIDA International.

The Board voted to extend the current moratorium on AIDA International’s sanctioning of no‐limits World Record attempts; this moratorium will continue until the Board votes to end it. The Board continues to review safety concerns relating to this discipline for depths near or below current AIDA world records; as yet, AIDA has been unable to identify ways to ensure adequate safety for athletes at depths of the NLT world records.

AIDA International received four proposals to host the 2015 AIDA Pool World Championships, and three proposals to host the 2015 AIDA Depth World Championships. The number of proposals reflects strong interest in hosting AIDA World Championships, and the health of competitive freediving generally.
These proposals are currently with the Assembly for vote; the voting deadline is 26 October. If you have not done so already, please commence your National’s review of these proposals. For the first time, AIDA International has posted the proposals on its Facebook page. This should give more athletes access to the proposals before Nationals conclude the voting.

Kimmo reported on a new Assembly web tool, which allows members to update their contact information online: similar to functionalities in the EOS and JOS systems. All National representatives are urged to log-in on the new tool to update their contact information, logos, websites, etc Dues payment can also be made with this tool. Kimmo also reported that the AIDA has started using a new email system, Wiggio, to replace the Yahoo Groups service: the Yahoo email service has been 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 current plan is to use both the Yahoo Groups and Wiggio services in parallel until 31 December, and then discontinue use of Yahoo Groups on 1 January 2015 (if the Wiggio service is performing as planned).

As you may have noticed, we are still looking into how to format Wiggio messages for easier reading, and to attach (or post) files more easily. If you have suggestion, concerns or comments on the Wiggio system, please send them to us as soon as possible (board@aidainternational.org).

The Board voted to approve the following instructors as AIDA Instructor Trainers:

  • Walid Boudhiaf (Honduras)
  • Doris Hovermann (Germany)
  • Andreas Pap (Germany)
  • Goran Čolak (Croatia)

Jean‐Pol noted that, as is the policy for all new Instructor Trainers, these new ITs will have a six‐month review period, to ensure that they actively teach AIDA Instructor courses. The appointment of these Instructor Trainers reflects AIDA’s ongoing commitment to having an AIDA Instructor Trainer in or near every AIDA country. All AIDA countries need easy access to AIDA Instructor Trainers, as they do to senior judges and Judge Instructors.

The Board has received a number of requests to support the creation of AIDA Freedive Centers: dive centers that offer AIDA courses and other freediving services. This is similar to dive centers supported by a number of other agencies. The Board agrees that starting AIDA Freediving Centers is important to developing the sport of freediving, and will make this program a goal for 2015.

In recognition of the significant amount of work he is doing to support Judge Responsible Petar Bojovic, the Board voted to appoint Vlajic Milorad Milo as “IT Specialist and Assistant to Judge Responsible”.

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

 

AIDA Board

 

Aida officers elections (period 2015-2016)

Aida International will be holding elections in December for the term of 2015-2016 for the following positions:

  • Vice-President
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer ( must have a bachelor’s degree in accounting or finance and have experience in a financial or bookkeeping position)
  • Sport Officer
  • We are also seeking volunteers to help with the appointed position in Media/ PR and Marketing.Please submit a CV, with all relevant experience, NO LATER THAN NOVMEBER 1 (20.00 CET)  To: president@aidainternational.orgDescription of these offices as stated in the Aida statutes (http://aidainternational.org/downloads/statutes/6-aida-statutes-2010):

    6.1.2 Vice-President. The Vice-President shall perform the responsibilities of the President when requested by the President.
    6.1.3 Treasurer. The Treasurer shall be responsible for AIDA’s financial matters, and shall provide such reporting to the Assembly and Executive Board as such entities may from time to time request, including but not limited to quarterly and annual reports.
    6.1.4 Secretary. The Secretary shall be the official recipient of all notices to AIDA, its Assembly and Executive Board, and is responsible for communicating all notices to the Assembly and/or Executive Board, as applicable. The Secretary shall be responsible for maintaining all corporate records for AIDA, including minutes of all meetings of the Assembly and Executive Board, along with all actions and/or approvals of such entities.
    6.1.5 Sport Officer. The Sport Officer shall be the primary contact at AIDA with respect to competitions, record attempts and doping tests, will respond to notices and/or requests for competitions and record attempts, and shall be responsible for maintaining the official calendar of international competitions and record attempts. The Sport Officer shall be responsible for maintaining up-to-date public lists of all world records, as well as the ranking.

On behalf of Aida Board,

Kimmo Lahtinen
AIDA president

 

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

 

Results of the Assembly vote on the Safety Proposal

Members of the AIDA Assembly, I would like to present you the results of the Assembly vote on the Safety Proposal.  First, I would like to thank the Assembly representatives and other members of AIDA Nationals that reviewed, commented constructively on, and voted on this Proposal—your efforts make freediving safer for all AIDA athletes.  Second, I would like to thank the other members of the Safety workgroup, who donated significant time and expertise to this project:  Dr. Johan Dahlström, Dr. Per Westin, Erika Schagatay, Stavros Kastrinakis, Antero Joki, and William Trubridge.

We join together in AIDA International because we love freediving.  The fatal accident of Nick Mevoli last November—the first in an AIDA competition—has led us to reexamine our sport.  We don’t want freediving to become like alpinism, where death is accepted as an inherent risk.  Your efforts make freediving safer.  The proposals you approved are one of many steps AIDA is taking on safety; others include changes to the AIDA education system, an online AIDA Incident Reporting System to gather data for analysis, and funding for medical research relating to freediving.  At September’s AIDA Team World Championships in Sardinia, we’ll have presentations regarding the changes that you’ve approved, and also a beta version of the Incident Reporting System.

This Safety Proposal is a first step, not the last.  Next year, we’ll review how these changes are working, review incident data, and return to you with items that may benefit from change: to update items that need improvement; to delete any that aren’t working; and to recommend items to address new issues that may be identified.  To that end, please continue to provide input on the Safety Proposal, and safety related matters generally (send to Board_AIDA@yahoogroups.com); we’ll collect your input, and the Safety Workgroup will review it in 2015.  Our goal is to present you with a Safety Proposal v2.0 mid to late next year—safety is an continuous process.

The changes you approved will take effect 1 January 2015.  That said, we’ll be working on a number of the items informally (e.g. Sonar and other equipment and training at this year’s Team World Championship), and William Trubridge will be piloting a number of these items, with agreement of the athletes, at Vertical Blue in November.

Vote Results

1. Limitation on Announcements

Item 1 on limitation of announcements received 10 votes for, and 10 votes against: a tie. In accordance with AIDA’s Statutes, this item will go back to you for vote (along with the Rules proposal to be presented to you in about another week—see below).

2. Sonar

All three items were approved, by large margins.

Item 2A requires organizers to train with and use Sonar at AIDA World Championships and World Record events (18 for, 2 against).

Item 2B requires organizers to train with and use Sonar at AIDA competitions with world record status (18 for, 2 against).

Item 2C recommends (but does not require) organizers to train with and use Sonar at other AIDA competitions for depth disciplines, unless the maximum competition depth is within sight of safety divers (16 for, 4 against).

3. Prohibition on Recommencing Descent; Feet First Descents

Item 3A was approved (11 for, 9 against), prohibiting athletes from turning back down once they have started to ascend.  As previously noted, the competition gauge and bottom camera can be used to apply this rule—both to verify information from Sonar, and to inform judges of infractions.

Item 3B was not approved (8 for, 12 against), so the proposal to prohibit feet first descents (recommended by AIDA Germany) will not go into effect.  AIDA Nationals with an interest in this rule are requested to provide AIDA with any additional information they may obtain on feet-first descents.

4. Consequences of Squeezes

Item 4 was approved (11 for, 9 against).  The Executive Board and Safety workgroup recognize that this rule is a significant change for AIDA, but also an important one to protect athletes.  Squeezes appear to be worsening in recent years, as athletes get to greater depths faster; it once took a decade to reach 100m, but divers now have reached that depth in a year.  Lung squeeze was a large factor in last year’s fatal accident, and AIDA International believes that this new rule is important in helping protect athletes from thoracic barotrauma.

AIDA Finland noted the importance of applying this rule objectively and uniformly, and requested that AIDA International provide guidance on how to apply this rule.  Those points are well taken.  Safety is critical, but this rule must be applied fairly. To that end, we will request that the AIDA Medical Officer (with support as needed) provide guidance to the Assembly on different types and degrees of squeezes, prior to 1 January 2015.

5. Consequences of Blackouts

Item 5 was not approved (2 for option 1; 1 for option 2; 5 for option 3, and 11 for no change).  Accordingly, no change will be made regarding blackouts.  AIDA International will continue to monitor data regarding blackouts, and watch for trends that could indicate increased risk.  Interested Nationals are requested to provide input on this matter.

6. Training & Equipment

All four items were approved, by large margins.

Item 6A requires minimum training for doctors at AIDA World Championships and World Record events (17 for, 3 against).

Item 6B requires minimum training for doctors at competitions with world record status (16 for, 4 against).

Item 6C requires minimum equipment at AIDA World Championships and World Record events, and at competitions with world record status (18 for, 1 against).  In particular, AIDA believes that training with and availability of pocket masks will protect safety divers from the risk of blood borne pathogens, and allow them to provide rescue breaths without risk of disease.

Item 6D recommends (but does not require) additional equipment at AIDA World Championships and World Record events, and at competitions with world record status (17 for, 2 against).

7. Incident Reporting System; Rest Days

Item 7A was approved (19 for, 1 opposed), so beginning 1 January 2015, AIDA will require organizers (with input from head judge and doctor) to report safety related incidents at AIDA competitions on the online AIDA Incident Reporting System.  We plan to have a pilot version of this system available for use and comment at September’s AIDA Team World Championship in Sardinia.  If you are in Sardinia, please join us to learn more about this important addition to AIDA’s safety services.

Item 7B was approved (17 for, 3 against), so AIDA will recommend that organizers add rest days to competitions where possible.

8. Judge Continuing Education and Reactivation Courses

Item 8 was approved (18 for, 2 against); this item is not part of the Safety Proposal, but was time sensitive, so was included in the recent vote.  AIDA will offer a continuing judge education course during the AIDA Team World Championships in Sardinia (free of charge).  AIDA believes that continuing education is critical for both the training and promotion of judges, as world record points are impossible for most judges to obtain (and accordingly, under the current Judge IOP most judges cannot be promoted to higher levels).  Experience points will be granted to judges attending this course.

AIDA will also offer a judge refresher course during the AIDA Team World Championships in Sardinia, to reactivate inactive AIDA judges (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.

Next Assembly Vote

As you determined in July, the next matter for the Assembly’s consideration and vote will be the update of the AIDA Competition Rules; the Rules have not been updated since 2009.  This vote will come to you in approximately one week.  The update will be presented in two parts:  a “clean up” version of the Rules (in general, cleaning up ambiguities, grammar, and the like), and line item changes for individual items. To facilitate your review, nothing has been added to the “clean up” version that you reviewed in May and June.  In general, items that you requested a line item vote on will be removed from the “clean up” version, and given a line item vote; a small number of items that raised larger concerns will be removed completely (e.g., the “Level D judge requirement”).  All items removed from the “clean up” version will be marked (likely highlighted in yellow) so you can see them easily. The vote on the Rules update will be open for four weeks, to allow sufficient time to translate, review, and vote.  We understand the concerns raised by a number of Nationals in May and June, and hope to address them with this vote.

Finally, thank you again for your review of the Safety Proposal, your comments on it, and your votes—your time and effort are appreciated by AIDA International and AIDA athletes worldwide.

Best regards,

Robert King
Vice President, AIDA International

 

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