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What Makes a Good Diving Board

Over the past 60 years, the technological advances in diving board manufacturing have elevated performance levels throughout the sport. Boards are lighter, more flexible, and have more spring, which in turn, allows divers to complete more complicated flips and twists.

You may think a diving board is always just a diving board, but actually, there can be great variety in the weight, thickness, spring, and mount of the equipment.

Here’s a little bit more about what makes a good diving board:

Aluminum Diving Board
When diving boards were first created over 100 years ago, they were made from planks of solid wood that did not bend easily and or provide different levels of flexibility.

As a result, divers could not perform complicated tricks off the board for the simple reason that they could not get very high. In addition, water would often collect at the tip of the board causing divers to slip.

Diving boards remained about the same up until the 1940s. But in 1949, a man by the name of Ray Rude designed a diving board made from aluminum. Aluminum makes diving boards lighter and more flexible, providing divers with the ability to gain height off the board and perform more complex tricks. This remarkable new element had a profound impact on the sport of diving.

Diving Board Design
Board design has also changed over the years, thanks in large part to the introduction of the Maxiflex Model B. This board, more commonly referred to as the “cheeseboard,” due to the holes at its tip, has set the standard for diving board innovation.

Two distinctions set the Model B apart from rest:

Perforations: The 189 holes at the tip of the Maxiflex Model B reduce air resistance, decrease the weight at the front tip of the diving board and eliminate any standing water that may exist.
Width: Each part of the cheeseboard is a slightly different width; it is thickest in the middle (2 inches), slightly thinner towards the back end (1 3/8 inches), and thinnest at the front tip (7/8 inches). This distribution of weight allows the board to flex more easily, react to a diver’s body more proficiently, and provide varying degrees of spring in relation to the force from the diver.

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