An Interview with Founder/ President Tasha Briggs
Interview with Owner and Founder, Suuz Martines
Intervies with Founder and Owner, Morgan Fisher
Watersports Biz: Who WaterSports Biz: What is is Scubado Rags? Adventure Patches? Tasha Briggs: Adventure Suzz Martines: A scuba Patches was first started primarily diver, designer, traveler, Change Agent, Qigong infor the Scuba Diving Industry and structor, Trager® practioner, ScubaDoRag™ founder know as "Dive Patches and keeper of a secret agent character. Continues page 6
Continues page 8 W e
Watersports Biz: What is Wet Women? Morgan Fisher: Wet Women® is the ultimate resource for women in all water sports, providing formulated by the founder and president of Morgan Fisher. Her love for the ocean and concern for the
Continues page 10
She decided to create an eco-intelligent product as being harmless to Morgan decided to participate in a
Surf Expo January 2013 Highlights A Thriving, Vibrant Industry t t r
Record-breaking show features more than 2,500 brands and 26,000 buyers, exhibitors and media.
Now there is a surf wax out there not women stay on top' but also to meeting stringent
or the landfills in which it may end up?
a storm that should make many vendors happy," says Beverley Gill of Island Beach Gear in New Jersey. According to Brooke Brockner, buyer at Ocean Key Resort in Florida, More than 26,000 buyers, exhibitors, and media took "Surf Expo was great. I found a lot of vendors that I was to the halls of Surf Expo January 10-12 in what was the looking for and new ones I was not." largest show in the tradeshow's 37 year history. More than Exhibitor response was equally strong. "Once again, we 2,500 brands were represented in 250,000 gross square had a successful show," says Holly Anderson, Senior Sales feet of exhibit space and buyers from 47 states and 49 Manager of NHS. "We met with at least 75 customers and countries not only found industry mainstays but also more collected more than 30 new leads. e bosses really liked all the orders we got too." Lisa Shinham at Wave Zone than 217 brands new to the show. "e show as a whole was wonderful and we bought up Continues Page 4 !
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WaterSports Biz Welcome to WaterSports Biz, the showcase publication for all things new and improved in all industries of water and sports!
If you have recently attended SURF Expo and the Outdoor Retailers Shows, no doubt you witness an explosions of new and innovative products to hit the market - especially in the SUP field But not all new ideas where presented at these shows and to make sure you do not miss anything new - whether due to you not attending these shows or the manufacturer not attending - WaterSports Biz is here to make sure you miss nothing! So flip through the pages and catch up with the latest and remember, keep coming back as, with this digital technology we can add new product editorial as it comes accross our editorial desk! Sea ya in the water! Richard H. Stewart Publisher/Editor in Chief
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Skimboards wrote to tell us: "Surf Expo remains, hands down, the best investment of our advertising money every year." Jason Freise, senior promotions and events coordinator at OluKai, reports that the January Surf Expo was among the busiest for the OluKai brand to date: "Congrats on a great show!" "We are thrilled by the feedback we've received from the show," says Show Director Roy Turner. "e market was vibrant, optimistic and ready to stock their shelves for 2013." Cumulative buyer traﬃc topped 12,500, an increase of 23% compared to the January 2012 show. "Buyers from more than 3,300 diﬀerent retail businesses found the largest Surf Expo in history, and definitely had reason to stay more days," says Senior Buyer Relations Manager Steven Fisher. Companies were ready for the crush: exhibitor attendance spiked 35 percent to nearly 7,300 compared to last year. Media attendance was also sharply up, also showing gains of 35 percent. "e increase in traﬃc Surf Expo enjoyed at our January show -- whether you're talking about buyers, exhibitors or media -- says volumes about the trust the industry places
Richard H. Stewart, Editor-in-Chief Richard@WaterSportsBiz.com
Ken English, Sr. Editor Ken@WaterSportsBiz.com
Sascha Rochelle Stewart, Photographer Sascha@WaterSportsBiz.com
Richard H. Stewart, Art Director Richard@WaterSportsBiz.com
Sheila Greenfield, Sales Director Sheila@WaterSportsBiz.com Stewart Digital Media, does not accept responsibility for the advertising content of this publication nor for any claims, actions or losses arising therefrom. Products and services advertised within the publication are not endorsed by, or affiliated with Stewart Digital Media.
WaterSports Biz is a publication of Stewart Digital Media. www.WaterSportsBiz.com PH: 352.817.5893
in Surf Expo to deliver the best buyers, best exhibitors, and the best shopping experience," says Turner. A variety of onfloor special features help buyers indentify new trends and celebrate the boardsports and beach lifestyles. According to Turner: "e Team Pain skatepark was packed, the sixth annual Florida Shape Oﬀ honoring David 'Davo' Dedrick was a huge hit with Scott Busbey taking top honors, new styles were on the catwalk of our fashion show stage throughout the day, and we were honored to feature the Surfing Florida Photographic History exhibit." Buyers also had the opportunity to attend a variety of onfloor seminars. "e retailer seminars were superb!" says Nancy Bordine of Beachnut Surf Shop in Frankfort, Michigan. "We learned so much about e-marketing, pricing strategies, and continue to learn so much about buying and planning. anks!" Log on to surfexpo.com for more information. For lots more about the January show, check out our Facebook Page. e next Surf Expo will be held September 6-8, 2013 back in Orlando Florida and will feature a first-ever consumer component with the co-location of e Boardroom.
ADVENTURE PATCHES International is the business started getting request from other customers, and many included sports clubs, schools and adventure businesses. ey started ordering custom patches with their logo to oﬀer to their customers and students for their achievements. WB: When was the company formed? TB: e business started as a hobby, and was treated as such until I decided after twenty-one years of writing computer programs as a Sr. Programmer Analyst for the Marion County School System, that I needed change and decided to leave my secure administrative position, and did what made me happy. On December 31, 2002 I left the MCSS and I started working and following my dream of doing something that would make me contented full time, and that was the beginning of my journey of designing embroidered patches. en In November 2005, I Incorporate. WB: What makes the company stand out from others? TB: We stand out because we oﬀer the best quality for the best prices. I am a small business, I don't have the overhead that larger companies require, so therefore my prices are much more competitive. I am also old school, and believe in good
customer service. I want you to be happy, and I will be happy. Satisfied customers and repeat business is my aspiration. WB: Tell us about your product? TB: I started this business because I traveled to many wonderful destinations, and all I could find is a T-shirt to take home. I knew that in several
years I would be either wearing the t-shirt to wash the car, or be washing the car with the t-shirt and they would become faded and worn out. is is not how I wanted to remember my memories, so I started designing embroidered patches. ey didn't take up much room in my suitcase, were reasonable in price, wouldn't wear out, and were versatile, because they could be framed, placed on garments, placed on backpacks or as one of my customers, has his patches displayed on a quilt.
Patches can be used for achievement, levels of training, or collecting, ey can be displayed on a shirt or jacket to reflect an adventure that you have experienced and fun to have many years later as a remembrance. We provide quality patches and can oﬀer many diﬀerent methods. We can oﬀer embroidered patches that are cut in various shapes and sizes. And have many diﬀerent backings to select from. Stick on backing, iron on, Velcro, etc. We also oﬀer sublimated or printed patches to achieve fine details of a design, that embroidery cannot present. Since we use the best quality of thread, you will never have to worry about colors bleeding or fading when they get wet or washed. If the patches are going to be placed on a garment or be placed on something that requires washing in a machine or drying, then we always recommend stitching for permanency. WB: What other promotional products can you produce? TB: e business has expanded, and we can oﬀer all promotional items with your logo. Although we started with embroidered patches and lapel pins, we can now oﬀer decals, tote bags, mugs, caps or about anything else you want your logo to be displayed. We are a member of ASI - Advertising Specialty Institute, so we have access to manufactures and suppliers. CONTACT Tasha Briggs 4516 NE 6th St, Ocala, FL 34470 305-401-3483 Tash@DivePatches.com
WaterSports Biz SCUBADORAG
I got into the scuba industry quite by accident, like being lured by sirens of the sea. After much change in my life, I was developing CoCo Cheznaynay® Secret Agent of Truth & Style who teaches to have courage, tell the truth, own all of who you are and face your fear through seminars, travel and products with hidden messages, secret compartments and dual purposes. rough small changes we escape "safe beige", step out and experience something new, sometimes just by the power of a thought, a color or a tiny now. When I began scuba lessons, a strange performance anxiety surfaced; not about water, claustrophobia, fish, nor the equipment, but the act of being lined up to perform the certification skills. So the character turned to teach me through travel, facing fear and the beauty of the sea. I went on 8 dive trips by myself, honed my skills and every time I got on a boat, divers complained about their hair, or lack of it. Some were diving with cotton bandanas. I knew from working out, cotton takes forever to dry. I learned a lot about diving by watching Elena in Cozumel, wearing a headband. She would take her regulator in and out as she took the headband on and oﬀ. I was in awe, with my short hair, as I still was having problems with my buoyancy and mask. When the divemaster would say “very strong current, stay with me.” I would ask, “What color are your fins?” or look for something to remember him. I realized, no matter my normally observant powers, after twenty minutes underwater, everyone looked the same. So, the solutions I sought were hair containment, sun protection and diver identification for safety and style. I made some samples that stretched, designed the Secret Compartment, had the logo designed, sent samples to Sport Diver magazine, asked before leaving for Isla Mujeres if we made editorial coverage. After impatient emails and voice messages, we realized we had made the magazine and divers wanted the ScubaDoRag™. I called Benjie to get our website e-commerce. He said, “I told you I did not know how to do that.” I said, “Well, I know nothing of manufacturing. Please figure it out. “ He did. We launched in 2000, hit the market in 2001, patent issued in 2004. We kept adding products because I quickly learned when customers have five ScubaDoRags and they like us, come up with more products and better fabric yield. It is also very important for our wholesale clients to up-sell products that coordinate. An investor read our story in Charlotte Magazine, asked to invest, handle sales, distribution and manufacturing; I was to create and design. en, he
was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor - I never received the money or the knowledge of manufacturing and distribution I do not know. What we've lacked in capital, we made up for in creativity, totally self-funded. ScubaDoRag™ is Made in America and appreciated by Japanese and other cultures (even Americans) who remember the quality and innovative style of American ingenuity. We listen to our customers and can turn on a dime. And, we have a passion and story to share about being all of who you are through self-expression. Branded CoCo Cheznaynay® and ScubaDoRag™, we make high performance, high fashion apparel and accessories for active lifestyles, above and below the sea. We love asking customers to step out and experience the power of color and try something new. Our staples of ScubaDoRag, ScubaGoodHood and ScubaTubeSocks are now joined by the CoCo Big Oh!, a wide headband with an “Oh”pening for ponytail, if needed. Recently introduced for lightweight and stylish travel, Super Sleeves and Super Legs to customize, colorize, protect from sun and stinging hydroids/jellies, and identify divers, snorkelers and even cyclists on the surface. Also, ScubaDo Hose Covers to color code rebreathers, and BCD inflator hose. When there are 12 sets of gear lined up on a dock, see your gear from 30 yards away. If I could say 1 thing to divers out there, it would be this:Experience all you can. Do not wait to travel; go by yourself if you have to – you will find so many friends, some within you. is is the great-
est sport to show up on a boat as a wildcard and cherish the friends you meet. Love the oceans, be in the moment, soak up every opportunity to make a diﬀerence, tell the truth, be a Secret Agent for good. e oceans move within us all. CONTACT Suuz Martines ScubaDoRag™ CoCo Cheznaynay® 307 W. Tremont Ave #C Charlotte, NC 28203 704-372-5175 704-372-5151fax
www.ScubaDoRag.com On Facebook and Twitter: ScubaDoRag Our Facebook Page: ScubaDoRagPage
WET WOMEN news, events, interviews, articles, stories, travel, schools, contests, conservation information, photos and videos about women's surfing, windsurfing, kitesurfing, swimming, sailing, diving, kayaking, canoeing, paddling, flyfishing, fishing and other water activities. Wet Women® is an international community of women, which participates in, celebrates, and supports women in water sports. Wet Women® is about women's courage, inspiration, and aptitude on the water. WET WOMEN® calls attention to the real skills of women in the water world, expresses the joy and fulfillment of women on the water, and advocates, motivates , promotes, celebrates, and inspires active women in the water world. Wet Women® sells women's clothing and ecosavvy products for women in water sports- sporty, comfortable, sassy, well made surf and beach wear and casual wear, biodegradable surf wax, and products, developed for women. Wet Women® attire and goods support the concept of women achieving their level of fulfillment on the water. Wet Women® products are for women who love the outdoors and love water sports. Wet Women® apparel and products are for courageous women, who love
to express themselves with a passion and aptitude on the water. Wet Women® sells products that represent a bold new focus for supporting women on the water. Contact Wet Women at: OceanRealm@Gmail.com.
CO-PRO WaterSports Biz: What is CO? Lawrence Factor: Carbon monoxide (CO), also called carbonous oxide, is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas that is slightly lighter than air. It is highly toxic to humans and animals in higher quantities, although it is also produced in normal animal metabolism in low quantities, and is thought to have some normal biological functions. Carbon monoxide consists of one carbon atom and one oxygen atom, connected by a triple bond that consists of two covalent bonds as well as one dative covalent bond. It is the simplest oxocarbon. In coordination complexes the carbon monoxide ligand is called carbonyl. Carbon monoxide is produced from the partial oxidation of carbon-containing compounds; it forms when there is not enough oxygen to produce carbon dioxide (CO2), such as when operating a stove or an internal combustion engine in an enclosed space. In the presence of oxygen, carbon monoxide burns with a blue flame, producing carbon dioxide. WB: How Can You Trust the Air We Get? LF: At some point before every dive you hand over the care of your lungs to the dive shop employee filling your tank. Few divers ever think about and even less understand what goes on behind the scenes in preparing and operating the complex system that fills his/her tank. When we did research on this question we came away surprised that we ever get good air. Air compressor and purification systems are extremely complex. ere are many points along the path from air intake to scuba tank at which a seeming minor change can cause a major problem with the quality of your breathing gas. I was inspired by our personal experience of twice getting a “bad fill.” Prepping for a dive, I found the air tasted like diesel fuel. at started my quest to find out what happened and how to be sure that it never happened again. Along the way we heard a dangerous myth from more than one dive shop employee that goes like this. “We use food grade oil in our compressor, so even if the air tastes bad it is non-toxic.” However, that is wrong. Any oil in your lungs can cause a potentially serious lung inflammation know as “lipoid pneumonia.” e symptoms can range from persistent cough to lesions on the lung. Oil in the air is only one of many varieties
of an air fill incident. Others include particulate matter, tank damaging moisture and even deadly carbon monoxide. is was all the incentive we needed to want to help ourselves and other divers increase their chance of getting pure safe breathing gas. As with many industry failings that are likely to cause harm or death, economics can play a big role. Also common to these types of issues is the battle between short term pay oﬀs and long term prosperity that makes all of the diﬀerence. Every diver we talked with and many dive shop staﬀ and owners we spoke with were as surprised, as we were, to learn that dive shops do not make money on fills. Filling tanks is in the business category of a “loss leader.” A loss leader is a product or service that is sold at or below cost in order to stimulate other profitable sales. In other words, air fills get you in door of the shop in hopes you will buy equipment or classes that are profitable. WB: Why is there no money in it? LF: Just a simple viewing of the the numbers for an example air fill tells the tale. Lets say you pay $6 for an air fill. On the front end, the $8-$12 hour staﬀ has to spend maybe 1015 minutes or $2 to $3 dollars of that in time to setup, fill your tank and check you out. e shop had to pay thousands for the compressor and air purification system. Compressors are great electricity hogs which add more money to the deficit side of the equation. But the real costs, even after the compressor is paid for is the rigorous maintenance that is required and the associated expendables (e.g. oil and filter material). e replacement costs for mid size filter materials is about $100 dollars. e staﬀ time for each routine maintenance session is around 2 hours. Average time between a full filter replacement sessions is surprisingly
short, often less than 100 hours. For DiveTech on Grand Cayman, during peak season, filter replacement is every 4 days. For Hoodsport ‘N Dive in Hoodsport Washington it is every 2 weeks and they run double the required filters on both compressors. It costs so much time and money to maintain fill system many shops don’t even want to think about it and sadly some don’t. But to stay in business local dive shops have to oﬀer air fills. During air fill waits is often the time when you sell products to customers. If shops don’t provide air someone else will get those customers (see our nitrox article). If they even slip up once, do not keep up the maintenance program or buy inferior expendables they run risk of having a bad incident. is can turn customers away for good. However, if a dive shop that was doing well falls a little short, the may decide to try to cut corners on compressor maintenance. It can be a slippery slope. You, the diver, can catch it if you know what to look for. LOOK, SMELL, TASTE and ASK: h Is the shop and compressor neat and clean? h Is the compressor room too hot? h Does the compressor have an hour \ meter? h Do they have a maintenance log? h Is the air intake wide and clear of polluted areas? h How does the air taste and smell? h Do they have a recent air test result certificate posted? h Are their cascade storage tanks hydrotested and visual inspected the same as your scuba cylinders? h How was you visual inspection after getting fills from this shop? Ask to see the shop’s compressor. If they will not show it too you or give you some flimsy excuse about safety, leave right away. A good shop will be happy to show you their well cared for compressor. When you see the compressor room it should be neat, clean, dry and protected from the elements and tampering. ere should be no dust or dirt on around the compressor. ere should be no oil leaks or oil on the system. e room should be large enough and well ventilated to keep the temperature a cool as possible. Air conditioning is a plus. e eﬀective life of the filter material plummets as the temperature and humidity
CO-PRO rise. e compressor also must have an hour meter. WB: What other things should one look for? LF: Look for the air intake. Is it clear of any area that may be polluted by engine exhaust or chemical fumes. Too many shops put their compressors in a shed in the parking lot where a car or truck may sit idling next to the air intake. If the air intake is piped from another area, make sure the pipe is large. e pipe must be .25 inches larger than the compressor intake for every 10 foot of length and every bend in the pipe. If it is PVC pipe it should not be glued at the joints. It is not likely you would check some of these details, but we added them just in case. Ask to see the maintenance log. If they do not have one, it is likely they are guessing about the timing of maintenance and you should have doubts about the air quality. Look for or ask to see certificates which
may be posted or on file certifying the latest quality of air test. Take a few breaths from a recent fill from the compressor and smell and taste the air. If you taste or smell anything do not get a fill. However, remember that you will not taste carbon monoxide if it is the system. Lastly keep your own log of where you get fills or add it to your dive log. is is very helpful if you visual inspector spots excessive moisture, rust, corrosion, particulate matter, or oil (as we had) in your tank. With your own log, you can narrow down shops that gave you the bad fills. WANT TO BE AN AIR GEEK If you want to know more than you ever imagined about air compressors, Jess Stark of Stark Industries has a book for that. He has written and is constantly improving on his book “Compressors for Dummies.” It comes with compressors you buy from Stark or can be purchased separately (although it is pricey). It is part manual and part general education about compressors.
We also recommend Vance Harlow’s "Oxygen Hackers Companion" from Airspeed press. REQUIREMENTS and CERTIFICATIONS Do not count on government or other agencies to monitor and keep your air safe. Training agencies, like PADI and NAUI do require their aﬃliate shops have the air tested quarterly. However, we found many shops that only test once a year and some not at all. Other than that any governing agency requirements that would aﬀect the quality of your air would be much more likely to the brought up in a law suit after the fact. It is very unlikely that an inspector is showing up a your dive shop to make sure they are following good practices. Good shop owner ethics and customer pressure are the only forces that are going to encourage the dive shop to maintain rigorous testing and maintenance. CONTACT 305-430-0550 800-338-5493