Gorgeous neoprene clad GirlDivers have long graced the covers of the scuba periodicals, gear catalogues and dive shop posters, but lately, there seems to be an increasing trend of GirlDivers actually showing up at the dive sites.
The gear is intensive, both in weight and storage considerations, as well as initial entry cost into the sport. To the women of scuba, it is but a small price to pay to be witness to the deeper arenas of life around the world.
According to PADI—the world’s largest certification organization—the ratio of females to males in Open Water certification classes is on the rise. There is close to a 50/50 ratio in beginning classes. However, according to DEMA (Diving Equipment and Marketing Association), the “active” divers are still predominantly male (86 percent).
Coming into the pool, however, are women who want to make diving easier for other women to actively stay with the sport, not just get certified. What does it take? Fun colors? Better fitting gear? A more zen-like experience in the underwater realm?
So where are the girls?
Here’s a list of just a few of the females promoting the sport of scuba in a manner which encourages other women to come on board. Women dedicated to building our sport, not specifically for women, but simply in a softer way, to encourage women to become more active with scuba and maybe introduce the boys to a different view under the waves.
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Our main travel feature in issue #24 is North Sulawesi where Wolfgang Pölzer visits Bunaken and Lembeh. Harald Apelt takes us to another Mediterranean pearl, the picturesque little port town of Kas in Turkey, while Arnold Weisz takes another dip in Brazilean waters by visting Ilha Grande, the resort island with no cars. Arnold also writes about the coral trade. Kurt Amsler shows us how to make great black and white images but, more importantly, he continues his mission to save the seaturtle from illegal hunting in Indonesia. Our new dive doctor, Kevin Chan MD, from Singapore writes about diving with asthma. In our new column, GirlDiver by Cindy Ross, we find out where the girls are. This issue's unique dive site is Lake Thingvellir on Iceland, and the portfolio section features painter Jens Poulsen of Denmark.