Watching trained athletes spring from a platform -- and
soar through the air performing complex maneuvers in the mere seconds before they hit the water -- can seem like magic.
However, the training and skill it takes to make the dives look so graceful are gained through years of hard practice.
Platform diving has been around since mankind first discovered the thrill of jumping off a cliff into deep water (and living to tell about it.) Today, it still provides a summer thrill as a recreational pursuit by summer daredevils worldwide.
On the flip side, professional sport adheres to strict rules of competition diving. These include required dives such as somersaults and twists from platforms measuring five, seven or ten meters high.
In major international competitions such as the World Championships and Olympic diving, platform diving is from the 10 meter height. One of the most-watched Olympic competitions, platform diving was popularized worldwide by famed American diver Greg Louganis, and later by Chinese teams who were inspired by Louganis' spectacular showing in the 1984 and 1988 games.
Around the Web, discover more about platform diving as a competition
sport with information on training, safety rules and judging :
More about platform diving around the Web:
FINA - The international governing body of the sport has all of the information on national organizations, international rules and
judging, a spotlight on Olympic diving and just about any information on platform or springboard diving that you could possibly need,
or want, to know.
USA Diving - The complete info on diving in the USA - with an overall guide to the standard dives, but browse around the rest of the site for information on events, divers and the state of the sport in the US.
Diving Australia - Portal to information, history, competition calendar, team member profiles and photo gallery, plus official rules, background on
Australian diving greats, related resources.
Britain Diving Federation (GBDF) - Check out an active forum, good resources including a directory of places to dive in Britain and Ireland with brilliant graphics, events and results.