In-Depth Post 5(Back dives)

I must say that I feel like I have improved a lot. I haven’t got a lot of dives in my suitcase full of tricks, but I have really got the ones I have been working on lock down.

For the De Bono section of this post, we were asked to transcribe a conversation. Unfortunately I did not transcribe a conversation with Ray, it’s hard because I am in a class with other kids, he doesn’t want to seem like he is giving me extra attention. But what I can do is use my experiences and previous conversations with Ray from all of my classes with him, I recognize some of the “Six Hats” that De Bono devises.

The first real conversation I had with Ray, we were both wearing the white hat. I approached him after class and told him that I was doing diving for a school project. He was very interested in the details of the project, the TALONS program, and my school. He asks little questions about the TALONS program almost every class, for example, why am I missing the class on May 16? I told him all about the Adventure Trip. I also am getting to know some things about, such as, Ray has been diving for 2 years and has swam all his life.

In all of that sports I participate in, and in school, I often push my limits. I am constantly asking Ray if I can try new things. He wears 000479_01the Black hat in conversations like these when letting me progress at a good speed, but has to contain me so I don’t push my limits too far. He has said before that once I get more experience with diving, then it is a lot easier to experiment with different dives.

Every class with Ray, I make it clear that I want to progress and learn. I am always eager to learn new dives and techniques, it is clear to him that I am always wearing the green hat. I am interested in new ideas and new ways of thinking, which is a big part of diving. Everything moves so quickly when diving so you need to think it through in your head before you dive. When Ray introduces new ways of thinking through the dive, it can help some and hinder others, it really depends on the person.


This last class Ray introduced back dive fall-ins, which is a front dive fall-in but backwards.

These back dive fall-ins are much harder. Comparing to the front dive fall-ins, first of all, it is much harder to bend forward into a dive than to bend backwards. And secondly on a back dive fall-in, you can’t see where you’re going, so you have to use your special awareness to control your dive.

25 Sep 2000:  Ken Nee Yeoh of Malaysia in action during the Mens 3m Springboard Preliminaries at the Sydney International Aquatic Centre on Day 10 of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.  Mandatory Credit: Al Bello /Allsport
25 Sep 2000: Ken Nee Yeoh of Malaysia in action during the Mens 3m Springboard Preliminaries at the Sydney International Aquatic Centre on Day 10 of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia. Mandatory Credit: Al Bello /Allsport

After getting a hang of the back dive fall-ins, I moved on to back dives. On a back dive, you stand on the end of the board with you back to the water. Then, you do your reach straight above your head. Next, you jump backwards off the board as if you are jumping onto a bed that is floating above the water. Lastly, you continue your rotation until you are up-side down, and complete the back dive.

In-depth post 4(learning entrances)

The past couple of weeks I had been mainly working on things that I kind of already knew how to do, with my mentor. I was perfecting my front dive fall-ins, pool-picand front dives, both on the 1 metre and the 3 metre. I kept asking if there was something else I could do to add a challenge. He willingly taught me a way to complicate my dive, and in this last class, Ray showed me 2 types of dive entrances, which add a whole new layer to my diving.

An entrance, is basically a technique or motion that helps you generate power for your take off. The two entrances I learned were called the T,Y,O and the hurtle.

The “T,Y,O” just represents the position of your body. For this entrance you start at the end of the board in a T position, so feet together and arms out horizontally.

You then stand on your tippy toes as you move your arms in to a Y.

The last step is the O. Quickly after you move into the Y position, you move your arms in a backwards circle. As your arms get to their lowest point, you bend your knees. The circle motion of your arms, combined with the bend of your knees creates momentum that drives the spring board down. Next, you complete the circle with your hands, and driving forces of your arms, jump, and the spring board, project you much higher than just jumping with your legs.


The second entrance I learned was the “hurtle”. The hurtle generates more propulsion that the TYO, but it is a bit more technical.

You start on the board, about two steps back from the edge, standing with your feet together and our arms straight out in front of you.

You then take one step forward, with your left leg, while dropping your hands to your side.

Next, drive your right knee forward while jumping to the end of the spring board, and raising your arms straight up.

When you land at the end of the board, you do your O. While bending your knees you move your arms in a backwards circle to generate momentum for your jump.

As you can see, both of these are quite complex and have a lot of moving parts to them. It took me two classes to be able to comfortably incorporate the entrances with my front dive, with a lot of frustratingly awkward falls in between. Ray was a lot of help, he has only been diving for 2 years so he recently remembers having the same struggles I was having. He had some good tips to speed up my learning. For instance, he told me to break it down into parts when thinking about it, instead of trying to both the entrance and the dive all at once. Whenever I am trying new things in diving, I break it down and go step by step, and I get through a lot easier.


Ps: I couldn’t find any pictures to demonstrate the entrances, and I realize they might be difficult to imagine just from reading them. So if you me to demonstrate them for you, just ask and I will be happy to do so.

In-Depth Post 3(Practicing front dives)

Wow, I have progressed a lot. Now that I have a mentor, I am moving onto bigger, better dives, and perfecting the simple ones that I already knew.


As I said on my second post, I started my in-depth with no mentor, but just using the internet as a guide. I couldn’t find any divers someone with a diving background that wanted to volunteer their time to me. I then had to sign up for a class at Poirier.


The class I am in is good, it does all the things I was hoping it to do. My instructor Ray Sanco, helps me with the little things such as, keeping my toes pointed before my initial jump. Since I had never done any sort of diving or diving lessons, I signed up for the first level. The level did not have any sort of age restrictions so naturally I wound up with a bunch of younger kids, which was a bit embarrassing and funny at the same time because I stick out like a sore thumb. Since the class is full of younger kids, the class does move pretty slowly, but Ray helps me focus on the little things with my dives.

I go to the aquatic center after school sometimes to progress, and try things at a quicker pace, and Ray helps me with my technique later at class. When I first met ray, I told him about TALONS, and that this class was for a project. He was very interested in the TALONS program and the in-depth project. When I told Ray that I was interested in developing at a faster pace than the rest of the class, he was very supportive. He didn’t want me going way ahead of the group, because then he would have to give me special attention. However, I did things like, opened up the high dive for me. Since it was the first class, we were still working on front dive fall-ins, and front dives from a small jump. I noticed that Ray was very good at keeping track of every ones advancements, so he could tailor his coaching for each individual.

Like I said in my second post, I had been having troubles with my front dive fall-ins, I would always over rotate a bit and my legs would smack on the surface of the water. It was on my first class with Ray when I learned how to do a proper reach, your hand position while diving, which helped me do a proper front dive fall-in and not smack my legs. I quickly moved on to front dives with a bit of a jump, and spent the rest of my time working on those.

For my first front dive, I jump way too hard and over rotated to my back. You could hear the smack of my back against the water throughout the whole facility. I spent a lot of time getting comfortable with my jump into the dive. By the end of that class I had the front dive with a little jump pretty good, but I get better and more comfortable with it every class.

In-Depth #2-Exploring front dives

Now in-depth is starting.

I don’t have a mentor yet but I have been reading articles and watching videos on my in-depth, diving.

Like I said, I don’t have mentor yet, but to get the ball rolling I started going to the pool by myself. I explored some of the dives I had researched and had fun integrating some of my aerial techniques from skiing. I had been going to the aquatic center because, it is really close to school and far less busy than Poirier.

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               I first started with some jumps and flips that I already knew how to do, such as front flips and misties, a front flip with a 540 degree spin. I then went on to experiment with some front dives.

When you have never done any diving before, it can feel really awkward jumping head first into the water. But I did my best to try some front dive fall-ins, which is when you fall into a dive from standing and without jumping. Now, as easy as that sounds, I was only going of some computer drawn images from sites like


It was fairly simple on the one meter, but on the three meter it was harder to keep composed. I often had a difficult time with keeping my legs orderly, and together. I would enter the water with my legs bent, at the knee, making them parallel with the water. Every time I had my legs bent, they would smack hard against the water, diving to get better just got more and more painful. I kept trying to keep my legs strait but for some reason they kept smacking the water, I then found out it was because of a different problem I was having.

As I said earlier, at the start of in-depth I was being coached by the internet. When I look at the diving position of the hand, the reach, I thought that you wanted to point your fingers to the water. I made sense to me, having your hands together, pointed at the water would give your body some aerodynamics, and the ability to slice through the water. I later learned from my mentor, Ray Sancon, and Aidan Macdonald, a former diver, that you want to have your palms flat to the water. When your hands hit the water, an air bubble is created around your body, so there is less resistance and you’re truly can slice through the water.


See, before when my hands weren’t creating an air bubble around me, I wasn’t slicing through the water. When my upper body had been fully submerged on each dive, it had the full resistance of water all around it, while my legs were still in the air. The momentum forward from my initial jump carried my legs forward, leaving them horizontal to the water and smacking every time.

The first couple of in-depth week have started slow, but now I know the fundamentals of the reach.