Friday, 3 June 2011

Diving - Pictures Gallery

Diving - Risks & Safety Measures

Despite the apparent risk, the statistical incidence of injury in supervised training and competition is extremely low. The majority of accidents that are classified as 'diving-related' are incidents caused by individuals jumping from structures such as bridges or piers into water of inadequate depth. Within competitive diving, FINA takes regulatory steps to ensure that athletes are protected from the inherent dangers of the sport. For example, they impose restrictions according to age on the heights of platforms which divers may compete on.

Points on pool depths in connection with safety:

- most competition pools are 5m deep for 10 m platform and 4m deep for 5m platform or 3m springboard. These are currently the FINA recommended minimum depths.
- diving from 10 m and maintaining a downward streamlined position, results in gliding to a stop at about 4.5 - 5m.
- high standard competition divers rarely go more than about 2.5m below the surface, as they roll in the direction of the dive's rotation. This is a technique to produce a clean entry.
- attempting to scoop the trajectory underwater against the rotation is extremely inadvisable as it can cause serious back injuries.
 - hitting the water flat from 10 m brings the diver to rest in about 1 ft. The extreme deceleration causes severe bruising both internal and external, strains to connective tissue securing the organs and possible minor hemorrhage to lungs and other tissue. Very painful and distressing, but not life-threatening

Diving - Competitive Strategy & Governance

To win dive meets, divers create a dive list in advance of the meet. To win the meet the diver must accumulate more points than other divers. Often, simple dives with low DDs will look good to spectators but will not win meets. The competitive diver will attempt the highest DD dives possible with which they can achieve consistent, high scores. In competition, divers must submit their lists beforehand, and once past a deadline (usually when the event is announced or shortly before it begins) they cannot change their dives. If they fail to perform the dive announced, even if they physically cannot execute the dive announced or if they perform a more difficult dive, they will receive a score of zero. In the Olympics or other highly competitive meets, many divers will have nearly the same list of dives as their competitors. The importance for divers competing at this level is not so much the DD, but how they arrange their list. Once the more difficult rounds of dives begin it is important to lead off with a confident dive to build momentum. They also tend to put a very confident dive in front of a very difficult dive to ensure that they will have a good mentality for the difficult dive. Many divers rely on their coaches to help keep their composure during the meet. In a large meet coaches are rarely allowed on the deck to talk to their athlete so it is common to see coaches using hand gestures to communicate.

The global governing body of diving is FINA, which also governs swimming, synchronized swimming, water polo and open water swimming. Almost invariably, at national level, diving shares a governing body with the other aquatic sports. It is the diver's responsibility to ensure that the dive-sheet is filled in correctly, and also to correct the referee or announcer before the dive if they describe it incorrectly. If a dive is performed which is as submitted but not as (incorrectly) announced, it is declared failed and scores zero according to a strict reading of the FINA law.

Diving - Synchronization & Scoring

Synchronized diving was adopted as an Olympic sport in 2000. Two divers form a team and perform dives simultaneously. The dives are usually identical; however, sometimes the dives may be opposites, in what is called a pinwheel. In these events, the diving is judged both on the quality of execution and the synchronicity - in timing of take-off and entry, height and forward travel.

There are rules governing the scoring of a dive. Usually a score considers three elements of the dive: the approach, the flight, and the entry. The primary factors affecting the scoring are:

- the platform selected (10 meter, 7.5 meter, or 5 meter)
- if a hand-stand is required, the length of time and quality of the hold
- the height of the diver at the apex of the dive, with extra height resulting in a higher score
- the distance of the diver from the diving apparatus throughout the dive (a diver must not be dangerously close, should not be too far away, but should ideally be within 2 feet (0.61 m) of the platform)
- the properly defined body position of the diver according to the dive being performed, including pointed toes and feet touching at all times
- the proper amounts of rotation and revolution upon completion of the dive and entry into the water
- angle of entry - a diver should enter the water straight, without any angle. Many judges award divers for the - amount of splash created by the diver on entry, with less splash resulting in a higher score.

In synchronised diving events, there is a panel of seven or nine judges; two to mark the execution of one diver, two to mark the execution of the other, and three to judge the synchronisation.
The synchronisation scores are based on:
- time of take-off
- height attained
- synchronisation of rotations and twists
- time of entry to the water
- forward travel from the board

Diving - Types & Positions

Six types of dives are used in springboard and platform diving. Four of these involve somersaulting either toward or away from the diving board or platform.

Forward - diver faces the front of the board and rotates toward the water.
Backward - diver begins on the end of the board with back to the water
Reverse - Formerly called "gainers" diver faces the front of the board and rotating toward the board.
Inward - Formerly called "cutaways" diver stands on the end of the board with back to the water and rotates toward the board.
Twisting - Any dive that uses a twist
Armstand - diver assumes a handstand position on the edge of the platform before executing the dive

During the flight of the dive, one of four positions is assumed. These positions are referred to by the letters A, B,C and D respectively.
Straight - with no bend at the knees or hips (the hardest of the three)
Pike - with knees straight but a tight bend at the hips. The open pike is a variant where the arms are reached to the side, and the legs are brought straight out with a bend in the hips.
Tuck - body folded up in a tight ball, hands holding the shins and toes pointed
Free - indicates a twisting dive, and a combination of other positions.

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Diving - Debut in Olympics

The Olympic Games are a major international event featuring summer and winter sports, in which thousands of athletes participate in a variety of competitions. The Olympic Games have come to be regarded as the world’s foremost sports competition. The sport of diving made its debut at the 1904 Olympic Games held in St. Louis. Although referred to as platform diving, the event contested in 1904 known as “high diving” was actually a combination of springboard and platform dives. The winner of that inaugural event was an American by the name of George Sheldon and as luck would have it, the first event was full of controversy. Diving is one of the most popular Olympic sports with spectators. Competitors possess many of the same characteristics as gymnasts and dancers, including strength, flexibility, kinaesthetic judgment and air awareness. 

History of Diving

The discovery of the "Tomba Del Tuffatore" (The Tomb of the Diver) shows that the excitement and grace of diving from high places into water has lured people from at least 480 BC - the date established for the construction of the tomb. In 1840 in contact with the German gymnastics movement the world's first diving association was formed.  Most of its members were gymnasts starting their tumbling routines as a kind of water gymnastic. Thus diving became very popular in Germany. It grew up out of the gymnastics principles developed in those nations. The first known book on diving was published in Germany in 1843. Competitive diving began in Britain in the 1880s. The beginning of competitive diving corresponded to the rise of swimming clubs and associations. 

In Germany, the oldest club called "Neptun" started international diving contests from a lower board and from a tower in 1882. In 1891 the first diving rules were adopted and the following year the first tables were published in Germany. In the late 19th century a group of Swedish divers visited Great Britain and gave numerous exhibitions, which stimulated the formation of the first diving organisation, the Amateur Diving Association, in 1901. The first diving stage in England was erected at Highgate Ponds in 1893. In 1895 the Royal Life Saving Society staged the first National Graceful Diving Championship at Highgate Ponds; it involved standing and running plain dives from firm boards at heights of 4.6 metres and 10 metres, and was for men only.

Origin of Diving

Diving, developed from gymnastics in the 18th century,  is the sport of jumping or falling into water from a platform or springboard, sometimes while performing acrobatics. Diving originated from people amusing themselves by jumping and diving from natural features (rocks and cliffs) or from structures built for other purposes (piers and bridges) early swimming and diving clubs were based on ponds. Diving was a traditional speciality of the guild of salt boilers, called Halloren to practise certain swimming and diving skills.  The Halloren used to perform a series of diving feats from a bridge into the River Saale. Diving was popularised by the Swedes and the Germans in the 18th and 19th centuries. In Sweden wooden scaffolding was erected around many lakes, inviting courageous fellows to perform diving feats. Somersaulting from great heights and swallow-like flights of a whole team are common.