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.