Diving 101: Equipment

Diving 101: Equipment
Posted at 3:17 PM, Mar 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-11 08:58:25-05


Dimensions: The platform used by men and women at the Olympics is a flat, rigid, non-slip surface elevated 10 meters (roughly 32 feet, 9 1/2 inches) above the water. The height is comparable to that of a three-story building. The platform is at least 20 feet long and 6 1/2 feet wide. 

Impact: Platform divers hit the water at speeds between 30 and 35 miles per hour. Repeating this impact too often can result in injury. 


Dimensions: The flexible, non-slip springboard used by men and women at the Olympics sits 3 meters (9 feet, 10 inches) above and parallel to the water when stationary. From the pool's edge, the springboard extends five feet out over the water. The springboard is .5 meters (1 foot, 10 inches) wide and at least 4.8 meters (15 feet, seven inches) long. 

Flexibility: Divers control the flexibility of the springboard with a fulcrum. Located at the mid-point of the board, the fulcrum can be moved so as to decrease or increase the amount of flexibility at the board's take-off end. Most Olympic-caliber divers prefer to roll the fulcrum all the way back from the board's take-off end to maximize the board's flexibility allowing divers to launch themselves as high as possible. 

Synchronized diving

Men's and women's synchronized diving, in which same-gender pairs compete from the 3m springboard and the 10m platform, made its Olympic debut at the 2000 Games. In the synchronized springboard event, teammates dive off adjacent boards at the same time; in the synchronized platform event, they dive from the same platform. Synchronized diving is judged both on the ability of the divers to stay in synch, but also on how well they execute the dives.

Hot tubs and showers

In the men's and women's diving venue, there are continually running showers and bubbling hot tubs in order for the divers to stay warm and loose between their dives. 


Divers typically have a personal miniature towel they bring with them on the springboard or platform to make sure they are completely dry. Being dry aids divers' grip while spinning in the air.