Category: Competitions

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

 

Team World Championships 2014 addresses

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

 

February Board Meeting Notes

The Board reviewed priorities for 2014, and plans to prioritize the following matters: Safety Enhancement Project; Update of the AIDA Competition Rules; Revision of the AIDA Judge IOP; IT projects (including upgrades or redesigns to the EOS and CARS systems); the 2014 AIDA Team World Championships in Sardinia; and the Strategy Project, which will focus on how AIDA may change in order to better meet its mandate of developing, safely, and the sport of freediving world-wide.

The Board voted to appoint the following non-executive officers for 2014:

  • Medical & Science Officer: Per Vestin
  • Media Officer: Chloé Villaume
  • Judge Responsible: Petar Bojovič
  • IT Officer: Julian Alias

The Board reviewed the Safety Enhancement Project. As previously noted, the Board is planning several projects to take what is learned from the accident in November and use that information to increase diver safety. First, a Safety Enhancement Project will propose changes to the Competition Rules, Competition Safety Guidelines and Deep Diving Guidelines, in order to provide organizers and judges with additional tools to prevent divers from attempting dives that may carry unusual risk, and in order to document best practices for safety and accident management in competitions and in training; as always, rules changes are subject to review by and approval of the Assembly. Second, Education Officer Jean-Pol François will modify AIDA’s course offerings to place additional emphasis on the risk of squeezes specifically, and safe diving generally. Third, AIDA will develop and implement 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 competitions (on a recommended basis). Fourth, AIDA will fund a study by medical researcher Erika Shagatay relating to squeezes. Aida will be communicating developments on this important project over the next few months.

Kimmo and Rob presented the Board with information on several important projects including the 2013 financial statements and branding and trademark plans. Kimmo also reported on advancements in IT projects including a new Assembly web tool, which will allow members to automatically update their contact information (plus other functionalities). He also stated that the IT group is looking to implement a new email distribution system (replacing the Yahoo tool), in order to remedy a number of reliability and quality issues that have been identified with the Yahoo tool, as well as to reach better integration with the current AIDA web-based tools like EOS, CARS and JOS.

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

The organizer is planning to use real time video capability for the depth event, and we are looking into working with a professional photographer/videographer to provide same-day posts for AIDA.

The Board reviewed a number of items relating to the AIDA education system. The Board voted to approve candidate Alexandra Shaef as an AIDA Instructor Trainer. Jean-Pol reviewed video projects relating to AIDA education. The Board also reviewed instructor insurance for the United States and Canada; the Aida website will provide information for instructors to apply. European instructors and freedivers (excluding competitive freediving) may already obtain DAN insurance.

The Board reviewed a number of candidates for judge promotion, and voted to approve the promotion of a number of judges. The Judge Responsible will provide details of these promotions to the AIDA Judges list and on the AIDA website. Board members affected by this process recused themselves from voting on their candidacies.

The Board reviewed a draft revision of the AIDA Judge IOP, and voted to recommend to this revision to the Assembly, subject to a final review by the Judge Responsible. Antero and Rob provided an update on the project to update the AIDA Competition 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 March or April. Separate from the clean up version (but possibly at the same time), 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 Judge IOP and Competition Rules are related, these revisions may be presented together to the Assembly.

If you would like further information on these or other topics, please do not hesitate to contact Kimmo, Robert, or any other Board member. And If you would like to add any topic to the agenda or would desire further information on the above topics, please do not hesitate to contact Kimmo, Robert, or any other Board member.