Springboard diving rules haven’t changed much ever since it was introduced as a sport more than a century ago. Some may think that judging a diving contest is an easy task but judges need to observe the various springboard diving rules and in consideration of some elements to look for before they give a score.
- Rules in springboard diving scoring. The scores range between one and ten and involve 1.5 point increment. The scores of all the judges are added to form the raw score. This is then multiplied by the level of the difficulty of the dive that a springboard diver performs.
- In a springboard diving competition there could be three to nine judges. In collegiate levels however there can be only two judges for dual meets. For international competitions, there could more than five judges for the competition.
- There are five elements in a dive that could affect scores in springboard diving competitions. The five phases of springboard diving that are crucial in judging include the starting position, approach, take-off, flight, and entry. Judging a springboard diving can be subjective therefore a springboard diver should give emphasis on these five areas of their diving performance in order to get favorable scores from the judges.
- The starting position is where the judges start to judge a diver. Once a diver embarks on a diving position this means that he is already subjected to the judges’ keen eyes. This position maybe forward facing the water or at the end of the platform, or backward facing the water.
- The diver’s approach is also judged in a springboard competition. When approaching forward to the water, the diver must approach the end of the board smoothly and must show a good form. For a maximum of three steps the diver must form a forward hurdle onto the last step.
- The diver’s flight must be full of grace and smoothness. The judges of the springboard diving competition will closely watch if the diver’s flight is smooth and flawless. The diver’s flight should not be over to the left or to the right of the platform.
- The entry of the diver into the water is perhaps the most crucial element in judging springboard diving competition. Doing either head first or a feet first, the diver’s body should be vertical or must be close to a vertical position as possible. The diver’s body should be straight, feet together and the toes must be pointed.
- Deduction and penalties in high school springboard diving rules.It is upon the referee’s discretion whether a diver should be penalized such as unnecessarily delaying performances in a dive. However, if the referee does not make any judgment and a judge believes the performance was unsatisfactory they could reflect their judgment accordingly to the score they give.
- Deduction and penalties in FINA springboard diving rules. The Federation Internationale de Natation (FINA) establishes its governing rules on penalty to be imposed on different aquatic sports with springboard diving included. No mandatory deduction is imposed in springboard diving rules and imposition of penalty is left upon the discretion of the judges on how much a diver should be penalized.
- Judging a springboard diving competition is subjective. Because of the leniency of the springboard diving rules, judges can make their own decisions such as deducting points for something they don’t like or finding a particular performance poorly executed according to their point of view. Generally, scoring can be subjective that is why some diving competitions have more than three judges to balance biases in the scoring process.
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