What is springboard diving?  Is it a safe sport for my child?
Diving is the sport of jumping or falling into water from a platform or springboard, usually while performing acrobatics. The sport of springboard diving is safe, fun, and exciting.

Many parents express concerns about the safety of diving. For an athlete who is properly trained, diving is an extremely safe sport.

What is the South Jersey Diving Association?
We are a summer diving program for swim clubs in the southern New Jersey area.  Our goal is to teach children of all ages the fundamentals of diving in a fun, safe environment.

Does my child have to compete?
No, not if it makes them uncomfortable, but it is encouraged. This is a recreational league and is for fun. There is no pressure to perform and your child could simply view a meet as another practice.

If a diver does not have the required dives at a qualifier meet to qualify for the Championship meet, they can still come to the meet and “participate”, but their scores will not be added to the session’s award rankings; they will receive a “Participation” ribbon.  The diver can go to the next qualifier meet with the required number of dives and compete to qualify for the Championship meet.

What lessons can my child learn from being on a club Dive Team?
– Improved athletic and motor skills.
– A positive self-image & good mental strength.
– Improved social skills interacting with teammates and coach.
– An ability to deal with success and disappointments.
– Confidence to dive at a competition.

How many dive meets are there in a season and what day of week are they scheduled?  Do they conflict with summer club swimming?
There are three 1-meter Qualifier meets each summer (held on Sundays) and one 3-meter Exhibition/Invitational Meet (held on a Sunday in early July) and finish up with 3-meter and 1-meter Championship meets on consecutive Thursdays the last two weeks in July.  These scheduled dive meet days do not conflict with the summer club swim meets.

Do I have to buy the team suit?
Swimsuit choice is made by each Division Club.  Regular swim suit shorts are not recommended for boys as these can easily slide off on head entry dives. Some older boys chose to wear their regular swim trunks over their diving suits until it is his turn to dive.

What age group will my child compete in?
For this recreational league, the groups are divided into male and female with the age groups of 9 and under, 10-11, 12-13, 14-15, and 16-18. The age you turn as of June 15 is the age group you dive in.

What diving experience is required to be on the a team?
NONE!!! Come and learn how to dive!

So what constitutes a dive? What if my child has never gone in head first?
For this recreational league, jumps (feet first) are considered dives with Novice divers up through the age of 13.

My child is interested in diving, what dives are required in the  9 & Under age group competition?
For 9 & Under Novice divers, they only compete with three dives.  A forward jump (100C), followed by any other two dives (no greater than 1.9 DD).

What is the difference between a Novice and Junior Olympic Diver?
Diving coaches will determine if a child should dive Novice or Junior Olympic (JO). Novice divers begin the meet with front and back jumps, JO divers do not do jumps and have more required dives.

If a diver qualifies as a JO diver in a qualifying meet, then he/she must dive as a JO diver in Championships.

What are these “groups” of dives you are talking about?
There are 5 different dive groups: forward (100’s), backward (200’s), reverse (300’s), inward (400’s) and twisting (5000’s). The group the dive is from, the number of somersaults completed, and the diver’s position in the air is how the dive is numbered for competitions.

Dives with half a somersault (or flip) will end in an odd number and be going in hands first.

Dives that complete at least full flips (whether it be 1, 2, or 3) will end in an even number and go in feet first.

The number of ½ somersaults and ½ twists in the dive add another number to the dive. It’s easier to give examples:

Example: a forward dive in the straight position (how most people “dive” into a pool) is dive 101A and has a degree of difficulty (DD) for scoring purposes of a 1.4

A reverse 1.5 somersault in the tuck position will go in hands first and is dive #303C (the second three is because the diver performed 3 half flips) and has a DD of 2.1

Twisting dives get a little more confusing. A back somersault with a half twist (so they are going in feet first, take off back to the pool but go in facing the board) is dive #5221D and is 1.7DD (5=twist;2=backward;2=1 full flip or 2 half flips;1=half twist)

What is a reverse dive?
A reverse dive is done facing forward towards the pool and you rotate backwards towards the board. You make an approach and hurdle just like you would for a forward dive.

What is an inward dive?
An inward dive has the back to the pool and you flip/rotate forward. You start standing on the end of the board just like a backward dive.

Why are some dives tucked in a ball and others straight?
Dives are performed in either the tuck (c), pike (b), straight (a) or free (d) (used for twisting) positions. Each position may offer a different degree of difficulty (tuck usually easiest and straight harder)

Why do some divers have their arms over their head and others by their side when entering the water?
For jumps you can go in with your arms up or down. Otherwise, all head first dives need your arms overhead and any dive entering feet first need the arms down (below 90 degrees)

How do the judges come up with a score?
Scores range from a 0 (failed dive) to a 10 (absolutely perfect in every aspect).

Scoring is based on 5 parts of the dive:
Starting position
Take off
Flight (including height in the air as well as body position)
Entry (want vertical)
But in reality- the main part of the score comes from the:
1.) elevation off the board
2.) the distance from the board-ultimately about 2ft from the end of the board
3.) the proper body position including pointed toes, legs together and straight or tucked/piked legs
4.) proper amount of rotation
5.) entry at vertical

What is a “balk”?
Every diver should understand the concept of a “balk” in diving and how it DOES affect the score they get for the dive.

A “balk” is declared when a diver, after assuming a starting position, makes an obvious attempt to start the dive and then stops for any reason. If a diver “balks” they get to try the dive one more time. Upon successful completion of the dive on the second try, each judge scores the second attempt as if nothing happened but the REFEREE instructs the announcer to reduce each judge’s score by TWO points as a penalty for the balk (the referee’s decision is final).

How are places determined for the age groups? How do you get scored? Are harder dives given more credit than easier ones?
Your score for each dive is the total of 5 judges scores (highest and lowest removed from calculation) multiplied by the degree of difficulty of that dive (called the DD of a dive). Refer to the the Degree of Difficulty quick link on the website home page for a list of DDs for all dives. Your score for the meet will be the total of all your dives added together. So yes, harder dives will receive more points due to their higher degree of difficulty.

Does a 3-meter diver need to qualify for the 3-Meter Championship Meet?
No – there is no qualifying score to compete at the 3-Meter Championship Meet.  The SJDA holds a 3-Meter Exhibition meet which invites all divers whom are interested and have practiced 3-meter diving to come participate and get competition experience.  This exhibition meet is run like a regular meet with judges and awards.

If your club does not have a 3-meter board, speak to your club’s Dive Representative to see if they can arrange 3-meter practice at one of our SJDA clubs that offer 3-meter practice time to other SJDA clubs for a fee (you will also need to bring and pay for your own SJDA coach).

What does it mean to dive “Exhibition” or “Participation” at a 1-Meter Qualifier Meet?
If you dive “Exhibition” in a qualifier meet that means that you have all the required dives for your age group/level and you are just diving at a different age group session time because you have a legitimate schedule conflict.  The coach submits the Exhibition meet sheet to the meet coordinator for approval.  You can qualify for the Championship meet at the qualifier meet, but your scores are not included in the meet’s session awards.

If you do not have the necessary required dives on your meet sheet at a qualifier meet then you will be a “Participation” diver at that meet.  You can participate and dive at the qualifier meet but you cannot qualify for the Championship meet as a “Participation” diver. You can come to the next qualifying meet with the required dives and qualify for the Championship meet.

All qualified divers MUST compete in their age group session at the 1- Meter Championship Meet.