Springboard and Platform Diving/sophomore walk on
QUESTION: I dove in high school, and just finished my freshmen year of college. At the beginning of the year, my school's diving coach gave me the option of walking on but in the end I decided that I wanted to focus on academics my first year. However, I'm reconsidering diving in college, and I want to try and get some dives back over the summer before I talk to the coach again. The school I attend is D1, but finished last in its conference and is graduating half its women's diving team this year. I was wondering, given my year off, what the minimum dive list I should be aiming for should look like, and any other tips/suggestions you might have for getting back into shape. Thank you!
ANSWER: Amy -
I can help you better by knowing the name of the conference your school belongs to. Ask a follow up question with this info and I'll get right back to you. In the meantime, work on your flexibility and core body strength. You should also contact the diving coach at your school now and ask if they are taking walk-ons for next season. If he/she is, then I can help you with what you should work on over the summer. Don't wait until the next school year starts to ask if there is a spot on the team for you. Sometimes a head swim coach will limit the number of divers a team has because the athletic director will tell the head swim coach what the maximum number of swimmers and divers they can have. You won't want to be left out.
---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------
QUESTION: Thanks! My school is in the Ivy League, and the coach told me he is taking walk-ons next season.
The conference your school is in is considered to be moderately difficult in regards to the types of dives you will need to be able to do. The Zone that Ivy League is in (NCAA Division I Zone A) is not the strongest one as far as depth of schools goes but still difficult as it includes schools like Virginia Tech and UMass that typically have divers final at the NCAA National Championships.
That being said, here is an example of the types of dives women in your league are using at dual meets, invitationals and conference championships. I am listing only optional dives as women do just six dives in any meet and not 11 like you did in high school. While you can do the easier fundamental dives in any given meet, to be competitive, you need to be doing the higher degree of difficulty dives.
One meter optionals =
5132D, 5124D, 5134D, 5231D, 5223D, 5233D, 5225D, 5331D, 5333D
Three meter optionals =
403B, 404C, 405C
5132D, 5134D, 5152D, 5233D, 5235D, 5333D, 5335D,
To get a better idea of the dives women are doing in your league, go to www.divemeets.com. On the home page, click on 'Meets' and then 'Past Results'. Click on 2014 and then NCAA. This will take you to a page that lists many collegiate events from last season. The Ivy League does not use this computer program so the best meet to look up is the NCAA Zone A meet held in March in Christiansburg VA. Click on Results and Women's 1 meter prelims. Look for teams like Yale, Prin, Harv and Coru. Now click on the divers score and that will take you to a page that shows the dives that particular girl used. Click on printable score sheet to see what scores they received. Do the same for Women's 3 meter prelims. This will give you an idea of the dives women in the Ivy League are using and the scores they are getting.
You should plan on finding a club team near where you will be living this summer. Go to www.usadiving.org and click on 'Join USA Diving' (there will be no fee involved). Click on Find A Club. At the next page there is a short paragraph that ends in the word 'here'. Click on that word and you will then see a page where you enter the state you live in. A list of teams will come up with contact info. Find one near you and go watch a practice session. Tell the coach your plans for your sophomore year and the dives you need to work on. Then when school starts, you'll have the dives you want to use in meets.
Good luck and don't wait to get in shape - get flexible and have strong stomach muscles - your going to need a body that will be able to do the harder dives.