(1) The fulcrum.
Management at our local swimming pool claims there is a risk
involved when novice divers move the fulcrum when using the
diving boards. I claim there is no risk. I began diving in
1940, and continue to dive in the masters program. I have
coached high school divers for fifteen years, and college
divers for ten years. I don't ever recall anyone getting hurt
from moving the fulcrum.
I e-mailed Janet Gabriel, our U.S.Diving representitive on
safety, explaining the problem, and asked for documentation.
Janet was prompt and courteous with her response. However,
she suggested that fulcrums were kept forward so as not to
compromrise the safety of the recreational diver. For documentation,
she referred me to page 41 of the 1990 U.S.Diving Safety Manual
The source was the Midwest Pool Management Corp?? I thought
U.S. Diving was advising this type of group about diving safety,
since we have the experts in our establishment. But no, they
are advising us so we can advise them. Talk about going around
(2) The last U.S. Diving Safety course for coaches. Although
the personnel who gave the course did an excellent job , I
had John Bransfield the U. Connecticut dive coach, the personnel
were forced to follow the course outline as given them. The
course itself had little to do with diving safety. It was
really a crash course in life guarding. The only true valuable
part of the course was the backboarding, but so much time
was spent on trivia that not enough time was spent on backboarding.
The first time I took this course was at Brown U. where Dave
Sias hosted the course with Don Leas as the presenter. That
was a true diving safety course.
Lets have our own coaches outline the safety courses. They
know more about safety than anyone else.
(3) CPR U.S. Diving coaches are required to take adult/child
cpr courses. However, in order to take the child cpr course
I was required by the Red Cross to take the infant cpr course
as well. I have never had an infant sign up for diving lessons
( they are under one year old). I wouldn't know how to teach
a three or four step crawl. True, infant cpr is a good thing
to have, but it shouldn't be required to get ones coaching
(4) Announcing at national diving events with tv exposure.
More than once, I have heard experienced divers in the roll
as commentators explain that the dive the audience is about
to see is dangerous. This gives diving a bad name. Please
those of you who announce these events in the future, kindly
stress safety. Explain to the viewers how the physics involved
in doing the dive allow the diver to accomplish such extraordinary
John Helm, Coach
Conard and Hall High Schools, West Hartford, Connecticut
Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut