Diving Board Heights

Today, many homeowners do not have a traditional deep end-on one side of a swimming pool which is needed for adding a diving board as in Schools and Public pools where diving competitions are becoming a very popular sport around the country. What are the standard diving board heights in private, public, and swimming pools used in Olympic competitions?

Standard Diving Boards are 1-3 meters high off the surface of the pool.
Olympic competition diving boards are 3 meters and 10 meters. The 3-meter diving board is a springboard, & the 10-meter diving board is a platform. Platform diving is from static platforms set at 5m, 7.5m, and 10m.


Most people don’t realize that in order to install a Diving Board on your swimming pool needs minimum pool dimensions that are code in most states based on safety concerns and years of studies. Just as important as the water depth is the slope at which the pool dips into the diving well; regulations on diving well size, shape, and depth changes may affect the size of the diving board you may legally install in a pool.


Minimum Pool Size for Diving Board


Diving boards can add a whole dimension to recreational backyard inground pools. Years ago, most backyard pools were built with a deep end typically 8-feet, and a diving board.

Over time the safety concerns outweighed the fun and sport that a diving board brought to the backyard inground pool.

A springboard or diving board is used for diving and is a board that is itself a spring, i.e. a linear flex-spring, of the cantilever type that is normally found on inground pools.

There was legitimate concern over the use of diving boards and pool owners needed to think twice about installing one with their swimming pool. After years of studies on diving boards and injuries, pool companies reversed their thinking and opted to do away with them for the most part.

Diving pools must be at least

  • 34 feet long—ideally 36 to 38 feet. That’s because the total size of the pool must size down to roughly
  • One-third for the diving well, one-third for the graduated slope, 
  • One-third for the shallow end.

The diving well alone must be approximately 8 to 10 feet deep. Such depth is required to prevent injuries when entering the water from a dive—particularly for tall swimmers. The slope goes from deep to shallow, and it’s critical for protecting stronger divers who soar away from the diving board into the water at a greater horizontal distance. The swimming pool tends to be built around the Diving Board.

The Diving Board also must be centered and installed at least 10 ft from the sidewalls. Having a Diving Board will dictate where the entry steps are in the inground pool since this part of the pool is where most of the people spend their time swimming.

Diving Boards are now thought of as an addition to your pool and folks who install them want to use them safely in the right conditions. In addition to your pool dimensions, who will be using the board should also factor into the kind and dimensions of the diving board they choose. This should be based on the people that will be using it.

The diving board actually can be a flexible board on a rigid stand. The flexible board may be aluminum or wood that’s coated with fiberglass or composite material and textured with a slip-resistant finish.

The diving boards should be 1 meter and 3 meters, above the pool water level at the tip end. They should be 16 feet [4.87 m] long by 20 inches [50.80 cm] wide with the entire length of the upper surface covered with (mentioned above) adequate nonslip material.


How High is a High Dive at a Pool


The Association of Pool and Spa Professionals recommends that the diving envelope have a minimum depth of between six and nine feet, depending on the pool. The minimum depth is

  • 3.2 meters for springboard diving
  • Maxed at 5 meters for platform diving.

There are two different types of diving: Springboard and Platform Diving.  Because of easy access, Springboard is the more popular of the two for the popular sport of diving.

In the world championships, men jump from a 27-meter-high (89 ft) platform while women jump from a 20-meter-high (66 ft) platform. In other official competitions, men generally dive from a height of 22–27 meters (72–89 ft) while women dive from a height of 18–23 meters (59–75 ft).


Olympic Diving

The scoring system is slightly different for the individual and synchronized events. Individual events are scored by a panel of seven judges who recommend a score between 0 to 10 (excellent). The top two scores and the bottom two scores are discarded; the remaining three scores are added together and multiplied by the dive’s difficulty rating, known as the degree of difficulty. Diving was first introduced in the official program of the Summer Olympic Games at the 1904 Games of St. Louis and has been an Olympic sport since.

Both competitive platform and springboard diving involve one or two divers performing spins, twists, and somersaults into a pool from a series of heights. The heights of the boards range from 1m all the way up to 10m.

10m Diving Board

Dimensions: The platform used by men and women at the Olympics is a flat, rigid, non-slip surface elevated 10 meters (roughly 32 feet, 9 1/2 inches) above the water. The height is comparable to that of a three-story building. The platform is at least 20 feet long and 6 1/2 feet wide

A tower is a diving platform structure that can hold as many as five levels of the board: 1m, 3m, 5m, 7.5m, and 10m. Competitions are only held on the 5m, 7.5m, and 10m platforms. The 1m and 3m platforms are used for training and practice.


My pool which I talk about in articles that I’ve written here at MyWaterEarth&Sky is an old Sylvan cement pool 38 ft long x 20 ft wide and 12 ft deep at the deep end under the diving board and 4 ft at the steps and shallow end. Because we had mostly children swimming in the pool for many years we decided to remove the Diving Board purely for safety reasons and saved some homeowners insurance.


The simple act of aiming the return jets in your swimming pool has more than a few advantages. Your pool filtering system will operate more efficiently and you will end up saving money on electrical energy and pool chemicals, and your pool water will look great! Read my article from MyWaterEarth&Sky called What is the best swimming pool return jets position




JimGalloway Author/Editor



references: Blue Haven Pools-Swimming Pool Diving Boards-Safety, Usage

BrittanicaHow is Diving Scored in Competition







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