The balk is an illegal movement by the diver defined as:
- A false start in which a diver makes an obvious attempt to start the forward or back approach but does not complete the dive
- A takeoff for the hurdle from both feet
- Loss of balance on an armstand dive causing the feet to touch the platform or either hand to move.
A balk must be declared by the referee of the diving contest or by the balk judge on platform. Once a balk is declared, the scoring table will deduct two points from each of the judges scores. The judge should score the dive without consideration of the balk. It is the duty of the referee to enforce the balk. If a diver balks twice on the same dive, the referee will declare that dive to be failed.