What’s the deal?
You could dive into a swimming pool, or you could dive into a swimming pool–the latter being a dive that has numerous flips and twists that happen within a couple of seconds, the result of which leaves you breathless.
There are two different diving apparatuses: the springboard and the platform. The springboard is bouncy and lower to the ground — it’s only 3m high. The platform is a solid surface and is 10m high. Just imagine the flips (or very painful back or belly flop) you can do off of that thing!
Dives are scored based on a number of factors, including the take-off, the height off the board, the movement in the air, and the entry (always point those toes). Scores are on a 1-10 scale, with the highest and lowest thrown out. The remaining scores are added up and then multiplied by the degree of difficulty of the dive, and there you have a score.
Men and women compete in individual and synchronized pairs events on each apparatus. Men do a total of six dives for the event, and women do five.
Why should I watch?
Hearing a perfect entry swoosh is addictive–and when a diver achieves it, it’s so exciting…and then you’re holding your breath until the judges reveal their scores. Did they see the perfection you just saw?
You want to watch synchronized diving just because you have no idea how they do it — two people on two separate springboards who manage to jump at the exact same time and be at the same height? How do they do it? [Don’t even get us started on platform synchronized diving!]
Potential drinking game:
When a diver over-rotates, you over-rotate your glass–into your mouth.
The perfect snack:
Anything that involves a dip.
FINA is the international governing body for many water sports, including diving. Find out more information about the sport here or from your national governing organization.
Divers wouldn’t be able to score points if there was no one to judge them. FINA has some information on how to make the grade, though officials usually need to start through a more local or national organization.