The decision to become a freedive education professional comes at a grave price: You have to leave the center of the Universe!
But let me explain...
As a freediver you learn how to focus completely on yourself, on the here and now. In the moments before a freedive you phase out everything that is not relevant to your upcoming dive, nothing can get to you, no disturbance, no negative though can enter your mind. The world, yes, the whole Universe revolves around you for the duration of the dive. This is the goal, this is what you learn and this is what you train your body and mind to do!
As soon as you take care of students or freedive guests, this situation changes dramatically: Your own diving doesn’t matter anymore, it simply has to be top-notch and you must be ready to dive at any time! Believe me when I say that this is the part that instructor candidates struggle the most with. Learning how to teach is one thing, this is what that a 10-day Instructor Courses is there for. But the transition, making diving on a breath-hold your second nature, skipping all of a sudden well-loved rituals and gain trust in body and mind to be able to handle this, that’s the real challenge!
Some diving agencies offer easy conversions for scuba instructors to become freedive instructors with as little as five course days and a total of twenty freedive sessions. To offer such a short-cut can only be explained by a lack of understanding the fundamental differences between freediving and scuba diving, it is dangerous and I do not recommend nor support it.
The transition between your own mastership of freediving (which certainly takes more than 5 course days already) and becoming a freedive instructor - this is where an internship, or as we call it at Freedive Flow, the Master Student Program comes into play: In a minimum of three weeks, candidates learn how provide assistance, service and safety on land, in the pool and in open water. Additionally, there is some freedive specific gear to be handled by the instructor, namely the float, the rope(s) and the bottom weight, which we use in freediving for every session. Becoming familiar with this gear is just as important as being a strong freediver.
After this intense time at the Masters, you are ready for and will enjoy your upcoming Instructor Course!
If this is what you have in mind, you are right on time! Freediving is arguably the fastest growing water sport world wide, new centers are opening everywhere and new destinations are being put on the map on an almost weekly basis. Look out for a Master Student Program and Instructor Course in your dream destination and turn your passion into your profession!
Images © Oli Christen