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MENAFN - Arab News - 13/06/2014
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(MENAFN - Arab News) Captain sawsan alqahtani got the title of the sea mermaid after eight years of diving. her passion for diving pushed her to practice her favorite hobby and get training courses until she reached high ranks of achievements certified from the professional association of diving instructors (padi).

alqahtani was the first saudi woman to dive 50 feet deep in the sea. alqahtani is highly ambitious to train international instructors however she had chose to keep working in training. she was eager to educate her society about diving. she provides lessons to families females and kids to explore corals and sea animals and enjoy their free time.

within her career and passion alqahtani had said that even if she is married she would still want to pursue her dream. her love of sports and swimming made her work in this field. first she was a swimming coach in a gym then her cousin encouraged her to try diving. indeed after several journeys in diving she started to think seriously about it by taking intensive courses and certificates until she became professional.

alqahtani continues that diving does not depend on gender nor age. 'as an instructor i constantly find females and families demanding to dive and ponder under the sea. my team and i prepare the required equipment to open water trips to train our divers. we are committed to the global association's instructions to not allow kids under 10 unless with a guardian and it is fine for old age divers to join if they do not have any health problems."

alqahtani had talked about the levels of diving starting with the beginner and advanced. the diver must take courses in first aid. of course these courses are divided into two parts theoretical method then practical method. beginners start diving in a pool and gradually dive in water near surface. whoever wants to enroll must sign certain documents for safety rules and instructor obedience.

alqahtani mentioned that following safety rules is important. divers should not risk themselves especially in deep diving. they must listen carefully to their instructor and to dive gradually up to the surface. instructors should make sure that tanks are full of oxygen and be careful regarding air counter in deep water. for more safety she suggested that it is better for an instructor to be accompanied with someone in deep diving.

she mentioned that in her early diving journeys she used to panic when she sees predator fish; she even used to have nightmares about it. by time she had learned that even that they look scary but they cannot be dangerous if there is no blood around. most importantly is to stay calm when you are near these creatures and do not move or attack them. she had seen a lot of sharks barracuda fish and many more.

she added that divers die under water because they want to compete with other divers by diving deeper that what they were trained for and this could risk their lives. even if the diver is very professional he/she must still follow safety rules.

there are breaks that every diver should have. if they did not take them the oxygen and nitrogen will increase in their body which can lead to paralyzing the whole body and death. divers should consider these risks and not endanger themselves.

in saudi society women have proved themselves and worked in many fields that were monopolized for men. it is not wrong that a female practices a job that she is passionate for and be different.

alqahtani clarifies about her future plans 'i thank god that people's reaction was positive and my family and friends had encouraged me to peruse my dream. i do not face a problem being a wife and a diver; in fact it opened the opportunity for many ladies to join this hobby. i consider getting higher in techno diving level but right now i will postpone this step as it costs a lot and requires traveling abroad."



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