What clothing and equipment is needed to dive?

Your swimsuit is obviously most important. But it’s also nice to have a towel, athletic bag, warm-up, T-shirt, shorts, and a chamois (small cloth to keep skin dry between dives).

Who do I contact about lessons or competitions?

You can search by state to find a diving club in your area, or you can contact your local registration chairperson, who can provide information about diving programs, lessons and competitions in your hometown. If you are new to diving, you may register as a “novice.” Learn more about becoming a USA Diving member.

How much practice time is involved in diving?

Beginners practice for one hour to 1.5 hours, three times a week. Junior divers practice between 10 and 15 hours per week, while senior divers generally practice from 20 to 24 hours per week.

What about competitions?

Most clubs participate in at least six local diving meets per year. They’re usually two-day competitions, with a minimal entry fee. Competitors must be registered with USA Diving to compete in sanctioned meets.

How is competition organized?

There are 40 active USA Diving LDAs (local diving associations) in the country. Within these LDAs, there are more than 300 USA Diving registered clubs. Based on an athlete’s age and ability level, he or she may compete in junior novice or regular meets (with age group divisions between 10 and 18 years of age), senior meets (elite divers) or masters meets (21 and older who no longer compete in the senior division).

Divers first compete in local association and regional diving competitions. The top finishers then progress to region and zone championships, where the highest qualifiers become eligible to attend the national championships. The U.S. national junior and senior teams are selected based on the results of the national championships and are able to represent the U.S. in competitions throughout the world. Special trials are held to select members of the biggest events, such as the Olympic Games. Divers must place well in the national championships to be eligible for these trials.

What age group is my child in?

Competition levels are divided into the following age groups: 11 & under, 12-13, 14-15, and 16-18. For USA Diving events, a diver’s age group is determined by their age as of December 31 of that year.