LEVEL UP: A SDIM Podcast for Dive Professionals

Links to our podcast:


May 6, 2024, Plano, Texas and Orlando, FL: Diving Deep: Comprehensive Insights from “Level Up” Podcast on Dive Industry Dynamics

Introduction to the “Level Up” Podcast and Its Role in Scuba Diving Industry Magazine

“Level Up,” hosted by Greg the Dive Master of Scuba Radio and William Cline, publisher of Scuba Diving Industry Magazine, offers an enriched audio extension of the magazine’s print content. Designed to serve the dive industry trade professionals, this podcast not only provides a platform for deep discussions on industry trends but also fosters a community among dive shop owners, equipment manufacturers, and influencers within the dive world. As a pivotal business-to-business conduit, the podcast amplifies crucial conversations that shape the diving industry’s landscape.

Detailed Exploration of Featured Articles and Industry Insights

1. Legacy Building and Educational Empowerment: Pat Hammer, Dive Right In Scuba, Orland Park, IL

Pat Hammer’s feature, “Ralph Erikson Education Foundation Builds Legacies,” offers a poignant look at the legacy of Ralph Erikson, a luminary in the diving community and a founder of PADI. The foundation named after him focuses on providing instructor training at no cost to selected groups, offering instructor training to underserved islands and locations. This initiative is crucial because it addresses the economic barriers that potential instructors face, fostering a more inclusive and expansive diving community. The article vividly depicts the foundation’s efforts in honoring Erikson’s legacy through educational empowerment, showcasing specific impacts and anecdotes from beneficiaries of the program.

2. Strengthening the Front Lines: Local Dive Shops: Jeff Cinciripino, Scuba Shack, Rocky Hill, CT

In “Tip of the Spear,” Jeff Cinciripino uses his military background to draw a parallel between the strategic position of the military’s front lines and the role of local dive shops in the diving industry. He offers that dive shops are the first line of engagement for new and returning divers, playing a critical role in customer education, equipment sales, and the promotion of dive safety. The article goes deeper into the strategies that successful shops use to navigate the diverse landscape of training programs and equipment offerings, maintaining their edge through careful selection and expert customer service.

3. Community Building Through Events: Richard Thomas, International Scuba, Dallas & Frisco TX

Richard Thomas discusses the strategic use of dive-related events to build a sense of community and drive business growth in “The Big Event.” His approach, particularly through the lens of hosting unconventional ice diving events, serves as a case study in how dive shops can work together to create a lifestyle that resonates deeply with their clientele. Rich elaborates on the logistics of organizing such events, the collaboration between different shops, and the marketing strategies that help draw significant crowds, thereby enhancing the visibility and profitability of his retail operations. 

4. Networking and Innovation at the DEMA Show: Tom Ingram, CEO DEMA

Tom Ingram provides some insights into this year’s DEMA Show and builds a case for why it’s an essential annual event for networking, professional development, and product showcasing within the dive industry. This year the show is set for Las Vegas, and he discusses the one day overlap with the Formula F1 race and its potential impact on the show and hotel room available. Neal Watson, a prominent figure in the industry, and Scuba Diving Industry Magazine’s Editor-at-Large emphasizes the unique value of the DEMA Show, stating “DEMA is the only industry trade event we have in the world, and it’s the only opportunity to get face time with all five of the stakeholder groups. You could spend 365 days a year traveling all over the United States, as well as the world, and not get the face time you can in those four days at DEMA. It’s absolutely critical if you want to be successful in this industry to participate in the show and support the DEMA organization.”

5. Transformative Dive Training Programs: Brooke Speedy, Tom Leiard’s Underwater Service, Muncie, IN

Brooke Speedy’s examination of innovative training programs in “Our Take on Training New Divers” highlights the pedagogical approaches at Tom Leiard’s Underwater Service. This article delves into their extended seven-week course model, which contrasts sharply with more abbreviated training offered elsewhere. By allowing for prolonged engagement with students, the program not only enhances skill acquisition but also fosters a close-knit community of divers. Speedy discusses the correlation between course length, student engagement, and subsequent retention and referral rates, offering insights into the business advantages of such an educational investment with their students.

Conclusion: A Vital Hub for Dive Industry Professionals

The “Level Up” podcast, through its in-depth discussions and exploration of articles, serves as a critical resource for understanding and navigating the complexities of the dive industry. Each episode enriches listeners with nuanced perspectives on business strategies, educational initiatives, and community-building efforts essential for anyone involved in the diving world. As the dive industry continues to evolve, Scuba Diving Industry Magazine and its podcast remain indispensable tools for professionals seeking to stay informed, connected, and competitive. 

About Scuba Diving Industry Magazine: Is the ONLY monthly dive trade publication that is printed and mailed to every dive shop in the USA. Plus offers a global digital circulation of over 14,400 in 165 countries, all dive professionals and trade not consumers (B2B). The monthly podcast LEVEL UP is co-produced by ScubaRadio and the Cline Group, offering in-depth analysis and discussion of the articles in each issue of the magazine.