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Share A Siren Song: Build Your Mermaid Business

Launched in December of 2020, PADI’s Mermaid Program continues to take the world’s waterways by storm. Thinking of expanding your business to provide aquaholics another way to get wet? PADI Mermaiding can be a way for established dive centers to tap a whole new audience, or for those outside the PADI family to swim up into it.

Read on for more details!

How do I get certified as a PADI Mermaid Instructor?

PADI Mermaid is unique in that you come to it from a background of scuba diving or freediving, but it’s not required – all that it is simply loving the underwater world.

You’ll start by getting your PADI Basic Mermaid, PADI Mermaid and PADI Advanced Mermaid certifications. This takes roughly three days. Once you’re practically half fish, you can move into your professional studies. There are three professional PADI mermaid levels.

PADI Basic Mermaid Instructor: You can conduct the Discover Mermaid experience and teach the Basic Mermaid course. Both require only a pool or confined water environment, making them great upsells and logistically simple offerings for an already established dive business.
PADI Mermaid Instructor: You can also teach PADI Mermaid and PADI Advanced Mermaid.
PADI Mermaid Instructor Trainer: You can teach it all, including the Mermaid Instructor course. You’ll need to teach 50 Basic Mermaid or higher certifications to qualify for the PADI Mermaid Instructor Trainer Course.

The PADI Basic Mermaid Instructor and PADI Mermaid Instructor courses take roughly a week to complete. Being a relatively new program, obtaining these instructor ratings is far from one-tail-fits-all. Training will vary depending on if you’re already a mermaid instructor with another organization, if you are a freediving instructor, if you have prior mermaid experience or trainings, etc.

Excitingly, PADI Mermaiding is a stand-alone program — there is no background in scuba diving or freediving required to get started!

What other PADI programs does Mermaid tie in well with?

PADI Mermaid is a natural supplement to PADI Freediving, with both incorporating breathhold diving. Being natural ambassadors for the underwater world, mermaids are also fabulous facilitators for PADI Aware conservation courses and activities like beach clean ups. 

And of course, PADI Mermaid introduces a whole new line of retail that established dive centers can sell, from the equipment required for mermaiding itself to accessories that can celebrate sirens even when we’re back on two legs. 

What else do I need to start a mermaid school?

The biggest investment for a mermaid school, beyond training, is a supply of tails and fins. Mahina Mermaid Fins are considered the gold standard of mermaid monofins, an eco-friendly product created by one of the world’s first professional mermaids. Cape Cali is a reputable brand that sells mermaid tails and tops specifically designed to fit the Mahina fins, and also has conservation as a core value – they donate 10% of their profits to 1000 Mermaids.

What other options are there for professional mermaids?

There are more mermaid jobs than just teaching – there’s so many different paths you can swim down! The most common involve some element of performance – modeling, entertaining at parties, working with a live audience at an aquarium or show, and beyond.

How can I grow a mermaiding business?

There are so many paths to PADI Mermaiding. Carmen Mantione of Tulum Mermaid, for example, came from a background as a fashion stylist in New York. After moving to Mexico in 2017 following the death of her husband, she looked for something new to bring joy to her life. After a brief bout training to be a SUP Yoga Instructor, she realized aquatic passion was a little deeper below the surface.

She became Tulum’s first and only PADI Mermaid Instructor, shifting her “Mermaid for a Day” programs into “Mermaid for Life” certifications, and sewing and styling custom tails whenever she’s not splashing around in one of the area’s cenotes.

PADI Mermaid was Carmen’s inroad to the PADI Pro family, which she has used to reach out to other PADI Dive Centers in the area and to establish Tulum’s first Mermaid Center at Manglex Eco Hotel.

Julie Ferrara of Freedive Cozumel, on the other hand, came from a background in competitive freediving. For her, her comfort in a monofin and long-term study of breathhold led to a natural curiosity about mermaiding.

In 2015 she crossed over to become a PADI Freediver and and was later one of PADI’s first Mermaid Instructor Trainers after participating in the Advisory Board for trial-testing and curriculum development for the PADI Mermaid programs.

No matter how you get into your tail, the PADI Mermaid Program is a beautiful new way to share the underwater world with a whole new community. Whether you’re already part of the PADI Pro family or eager to join the pod, we guarantee – mermaiding brings a certain brand of magic. Ready for the next step slash swim? Dive in here!

This article was written by Alexandra Baackes, the blogger behind Alex in Wanderland and founder of Wander Women Retreats.

The post Share A Siren Song: Build Your Mermaid Business appeared first on PADI Pros.

Business of Diving / Business Support, Business Support, Mermaid, Mermaid certification, mermaid training, PADI mermaid programPADI Pros

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