Springboard and Platform Diving/Diving tips


I've been doing diving for about 8 months now, and at first i thought id get it quickly, coming from a non competitive gymnast background. However, I still feel as though I haven't progressed
Very much. I have no control over my hurdle and I go way too fast. It is hard
For me to even do a triple bounce without falling off the board.
Also, another girl started a little after me and has already progressed so much! I'm just feeling a little discouraged, because I'm a teenager and want to excel in this sport like the other, more experienced divers. I get no height and always mess up the hurdle, the most important part.
Any suggestions or know what I'm feeling ?

Mikaela -

The problems you are having are experienced by every diver who has ever set foot on a diving board. The front approach/hurdle will be something you will have to continuously deal with for as long as you stay in the sport. Even the most advanced divers have the same problems you have described. Diving is a never ending learning experience for both the diver and coach.

When I have a diver with hurdle problems, I do several things. Work on the hurdle on a trampoline and a dry board were you can do more repetitions. I do not know if you have access to this equipment but they are valuable tools to help fix problems. If you do not have them, I would have you do a workout were you do not do any hurdles. For the front and reverse groups, do fundamental dives from a standing position. Backs and inwards of course have no hurdle and for the twisting group, only do back twisters. This way you have a session where you are not frustrated with hurdles and feel better about your practice.

The next workout I would have you do standing hurdles and one step hurdles. I do not know if you are familiar with these drills but they do help. You would also do a lot of jumps and fundamental dives with these drills instead of optionals. The goal of the workout is to feel better about your hurdle without worrying about doing difficult dives.

When it comes to triple bouncing skills, I would have you again do only jumps and voluntary dives. I would also have you try and not bounce super high and work on balance and timing instead. I also make sure that the diver does the same number of bounces on every dive to work on catching the board and not pounding it.

When it comes to other divers in your workout, you have to realize that there will always be someone else to come along you is better than you, is more talented and learns faster. There will also be better athletes than them that come along. The key thing is to not compare yourself to them and just focus on you own dives. If you pay more attention to what they are doing than your own workout, your problems will increase. Only focus on what you can control which is your next dive. Not your team mates next dive. Leave evaluations to the coaches and judges.

Remember that success is a journey, not a destination. The road is going to be bumpy. You have selected a sport that is full of adversity and will test your patience. You have probably hit a plateau where you are staying the same every workout. Just realize that it will change and you will progress as long as you make the changes your coach is asking you to do

Try to have fun in your next workout. It's just a sport. Face piles of trials with smiles!

Good luck. Hope all this helps.

Springboard and Platform Diving

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Tom Trapp


I can answer any questions pertaining to all levels of springboard and platform diving including : beginner lessons, intermediate, advanced, high school, Junior Olympic, AAU, Masters (Adult), Collegiate and Senior diving. Questions about training, technique, competitions, dryland training including trampoline and dry board.I can answer questions about how to judge/referee diving events.Also questions about how run, direct and administrate all different types of diving meets from novice events through Olympic Trials.I am also available as a consultant and expert witness for legal cases involving diving. I cannot answer questions about swimming (how to dive off a starting block) or SCUBA diving.


3 time U.S. Diving National Team Coach. Coached World, International and National Junior Olympic individual and team champions. Collegiate level experience (Junior College and Division I).Chairman, U. S. Diving Region 10 and Northern California Diving Associations. Professional diving referee, judge and meet director including U.S. Diving Junior and Senior Nationals, National Qualifying events and Division I collegiate events including the 2010 Men's NCAA Division I Diving Championships. Head Referee for the Big 12 and ACC Conference Diving Championships.Competition Director for past NCAA Men's Division I Nationals and numerous Pac 10 Conference Championships.In 2010, attended the FINA Junior Olympic World Diving Championships to take the International Judging Certification Class which was successfull completed.

U.S. Diving. AAU Diving. Professional Diving Coaches Association. FINA.

B.S. in Recreation and California Teaching Credential in Physical Education/Aquatics. U.S. Diving Safety Certified Coach.

Awards and Honors
U.S. Diving National Award of Excellence. Northern California Diving Association Coach of the Year. U.S. Diving Region 10 Coach of the Year

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