Mermaid instructor teaches fin art in Fujian

By / China Daily / Updated: 11:39,13-September-2021

Tourists watch a mermaid performance in Xiamen, Fujian province.[Photo by Shen Weibin/chinadaily.com.cn]

At around 9 am most days, You Yijin puts on her swimsuit and a fish tail and plunges into the water at a training center for mermaid diving in Xiamen, Fujian province.

A professional instructor in mermaid diving, You spends the morning practicing underwater by herself. By 2 pm, her trainees arrive at the center near the sea.

After a warming up, the divers, mostly women, jump into the water to learn not only regular diving skills but also how to express the elegance of a mermaid.

You once worked at a State-owned company as a full-time human resources clerk until a few years ago when she earned her license as a diving coach while traveling overseas.

"I became extremely fond of diving and decided to make my life more wonderful with the new career," said You, who was born in the 1980s.

Tourists watch a mermaid performance in Xiamen, Fujian province.[Photo by Shen Weibin/chinadaily.com.cn]

As the activity became popular in the coastal city, she quit her job and became a mermaid instructor.

"Mermaid diving is an emerging sport that requires both swimming and yoga skills," she said.

Now she teaches about 10 trainees every month. During the recent summer vacation, she even had some students who came to learn from her.

She said some of the trainees want to be professional mermaid divers. A performer must be able to hold her breath underwater for one minute and complete various movements.

You said she spent a lot of money on underwater photography equipment, which she uses to promote interest in the sport and take pictures of her trainees in action.

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