So you want to be a diver, or just take a diving lesson, compete for your high school team, or shoot for a national championship - opportunities for diving and the prospective diver in the United States vary from lessons to elite Olympic competitors. Anyone with interest in the sport of diving has a place in this physically and mentally challenging sport.
Diving Lesson ProgramsLesson programs for the diver are the backbone of the sport of diving. They introduce the sport to beginner diver, and using proper instruction and supervision help divers learn the basics of diving. Lessons programs are offered by many USA Diving and Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) diving clubs, and can be found at community, local and municipal swimming pools.
Summer League DivingMany cities and towns offer competitive diving during the summer months at local community or country club pools. These swimming and diving league meets include divers ranging in age from six to 18, competing in incremental age groups.
Novice, Developmental and Grassroots DivingOnce a diver has reached a particular level of expertise in lessons, they may be ready to compete in local or regional competitions on a year-round basis. These types of competitions, which are offered by both USA Diving and the AAU, offer a chance for divers to show what they have learned in a competitive format. The requirements for these diving meets may be as simple as performing front and back jumps off the diving board, but introduce the competitive side of diving.
Junior DivingAs a divers’ skills advance, they may be ready for junior diving. To compete at the junior level a diver must be able to perform a required number of dives as defined by FINA, the international governing body for aquatics. Junior diving is contested in a series of age groups ranging from 11 and under to the 16-18 age group. Once a diver enters this phase of diving, they will have the opportunity to compete in regional and national competitions with the ultimate goal of advancing to a national championship. Junior championships are offered by both USA Diving and the AAU.
High School DivingHigh school diving
is offered in the majority of interscholastic athletic programs and give divers to not only the opportunity to be a part of high school athletic competition, but to compete for individual and team state championships.
College DivingThe majority of colleges and universities offer swimming and diving programs with opportunities ranging from small college and junior college programs, to larger state universities. Many of these schools offer scholarship opportunities to the most accomplished divers coming out of high school.
Senior DivingSenior competition is the pinnacle of diving competition in the U.S. USA Diving, the national governing body for the sport of diving in the United States, hosts national championships in both the spring and summer diving seasons. For those with the skill and desire, the opportunity exists to compete against the best in the world in international competitions such as the FINA Grand Prix, FINA World Cup, World Championships and Olympic Games.
Masters DivingA divers’ career does not necessarily end once they finish diving in high school or college. Masters diving is sponsored by both USA Diving and the AAU, and offers the opportunity for divers over the age of 21 to continue competing well into their 80’s! National and international championships are available for masters’ divers.