Rules of Springboard Diving - Swimming Sports

Rules of Springboard Diving - Swimming Sports


This longtime Summer Olympic Sport is the pinnacle of grace, athleticism, and risk-taking in the water. Diving is governed by FINA, or the Federation of International Swimming. FINA also oversees water polo, synchronized swimming, and competitive swimming.


How to Dive


Aside from gymnastics, diving is one of the most technical sports in the Summer Olympics. Divers are scored from a staggering panel of 11 judges, with two of those judges sitting water-side to see the execution of the dive.


Execution is nearly just as important as technicality when it comes to diving. Divers must have complete control of their bodies as they twist and turn throughout the air and as they make contact with the water. Diving is not a sport for the novices, as it requires years of formal training.


Rules of Diving


  • Before a diver can even perform, their uniform must meet Olympic standards. For example, men must have regulation speedos while women must have regulation one-pieces and hair ties. Failure to do so can disqualify a diver before ever stepping out on the platform.
  • There are two types of diving types. Platform diving takes place from 33 feet high and the diver must be static, while springboard diving takes place from 9 feet 10 inches and the diver must get a running start.
  • In a round, men will get six qualifying dives while women get five.
  • Judges score from 0 out of 10, and their scores will be based on apex (maximum height of the dive), starting position, approach, flight path, technicality, and water entry.
  • In springboard diving, a diver must complete five different types of dives throughout a round: Forward, backward, reverse, inward, and twisting.
  • In platform diving, a diver must do at least one four of these dives and one must be a forward facing one.
  • No dive can be repeated. This can result in a severe loss of points or disqualification.
  • If a diver achieves two zeros, or no dives, they can be disqualified.


Because of the velocity in which divers enter the water, these pools must be especially deep. Olympic diving pools reach a depth of up to 32 feet!









Written by: Devin Pickell

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