How to Be an Olympic Diving Judge


An Olympic diver works hard for their well-deserved glory. But an Olympic diving judge works hard, too, and sports fans rarely hear about them unless there's a complaint about a score they've given. Here's how an Olympic diving judge attains that coveted position.

  • Coach a college or other amateur diving team. The Olympic diving organizers tap successful college diving coaches as Olympic diving judges. Former Olympic and competitive divers also make the grade.

  • Gain a good track record as a competitive diving judge. Rate divers in local, state and national competitions, and prove that you have a keen eye for good diving form and a firm grasp on the scoring system.

  • Acquaint yourself with the different diving techniques. Study the correct form for the reverse, twisting and handstand dives and other popular positions. Grade each diver on the precision and strength of each movement.

  • Judge four basic elements in each Olympic dive. Rate each diver on their approach, as they ready themselves to spring into the water. Then assess their take-off, or the initial leap off the diving board and how they execute their dive from mid-air to the water's surface. Finally, score the diver on their entry into the water.

  • Score the Olympic diver on a numeric scale, from zero for complete failure to 10 for very good. A tariff then multiples the scores from each judge (seven for regular competition, nine for synchronized diving) by the dive's degree of difficulty.

Tips & Warnings

  • Don't consider the difficulty of the dive when scoring; judge the execution.

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