Moving forward as a PADI Certified Mermaid
Most people have some personal goals in mind when they start the PADI Mermaid Course and have an idea of what comes next. If not, that's okay!
If you are outside the Salt Lake Area, the best way to find open water sites is to connect with a PADI Dive shop in your area. Once you locate a shop, contact them to find local areas that allow mermaiding either in confined water(pools) or in open water locations. When I first started swimming as a mermaid in my area, I did just that. I located a PADI dive shop close to me and went in to discuss my goals. I met Dave at Dive Utah, and he was happy to help me move forward with my mermaid swims! He helped me coordinate with a Divemaster to act as a safety diver for each of my mermaid practices, since this was long before the PADI mermaid program was established and this was the best way to create a safe space for Mermaid practice.
When you are visiting a recreation center to arrange a practice session, be sure to communicate what your goals for the session and what certifications you have. The center may or may not request to see your certification card. I have been turned away from many facilities because they simply ban monofins outright. I'm working to increase monofin acceptance in my area, but this is a work in progress in public pools. Be prepared with bifins to practice with in case your plans for monofin practice is not allowed. You can always make the best of a pool session! Use this list below to guide your conversation as you discuss your certification with recreation center staff:
As a PADI Mermaid, you are certified to:
Not all mermaids are satisfied with local Mermaid Practice or pool training, so we have travel options for you! This coming summer, 2023, I will be attending MerWeek and completing photoshoots on land for attending mermaids. This is an amazing opportunity to build community with other mermaids from around the world, develop your skills in confined and open water, develop your photography and video portfolio, and experience a beautiful Caribbean environment in Cozumel, Mexico. This opportunity has been transformative for me in the past and I am excited to share it with all mermaids this summer! The incentives for early registration will extend through the end of 2022.
What's your favorite place to practice you Mermaid skills? What's the most unexpected door that mermaiding has opened for you?
Ani is a PADI Mermaid Instructor Trainer, Freedive Instructor, Divemaster, Underwater Photography Instructor and Professional Educator. You can find her teaching the PADI Mermaid program at Dive Utah or out and about on adventures with her family.