There is much more to training a diver than asking them to repeat a dive multiple times and hope it gets better. Modern training methods involve using equipment other than the diving board and water. These six types of training equipment can help a diving program and coach expand and enhance the ability to develop successful divers.
Trampolines are one of the most basic training devices used in diving. They may be used to practice and perfect basic training skills, such as an arm swing and jump, or an approach and hurdle. When used in conjunction with a spotting apparatus, trampolines can be used to practice dives without the fear of the dreaded “smack.” Trampolines come in a variety of sizes and shapes – rectangular or round, folding or non-folding, above ground or in-ground. The most basic trampoline used for diving training is a rectangular trampoline.
2. Dryland Diving Board
A relatively new trend in diving training is the dryland diving board. The dryland diving board can be used for the same basic purposes as a trampoline, but with the obvious advantage of using a springboard instead of a trampoline mat. Dryland diving boards also come in a variety of forms. Many are discarded diving stands that have been installed on a pool deck or dryland facility, or a portable diving stand that can be moved to accommodate facility space or needs.
If your pool or dryland facility has a trampoline or dryland diving board, spotting equipment is an important addition. Spotting and twisting belts, spotting rigs, and ropes and pulleys are necessary not only to ensure safety, but also to get the most out of a trampoline or dryland diving board. Spotting “rigs” may be free standing, or installed on an existing structure. Spotting equipment can also be installed over a traditional diving board over water, allowing divers to learn dives in the pool.
4. Stretchng and Skill Mats
Stretching mats are the easiest, and most basic of all dryland training equipment. They are portable and come in a variety of shapes, colors and sizes. If deck space at your pool is limited, folding mats can be an important addition to your diving equipment. Mats can be used for pre- and post-workout stretching, and the teaching of basic diving and tumbling skills.
5. Training FloorsIf your diving team or club has a dryland facility, a gym floor can greatly enhance the ability of a coach to instruct multiple divers in a variety of training methods. Divers can complete training exercises at the same time (instead of one at a time using stretching mats), or move from training station to training station on a gym floor. These floors can come as a basic foam floor, or with the addition of springs as seen on gymnastic competition floors.
6. TIVO and Recording Devices
In the past, divers were forced to rely only on the feedback from their coach to improve their skills and progress in their diving ability. With the addition of recording devices such as TIVO, divers can not only listen to a coach’s advice, but also visual understand what a coach is attempting to convey – in real time! With TIVO, a diver can not only see their most recent dive, but also start, stop, pause or rewind to get a better understanding of what they are doing right, or wrong.