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Thread: Depth question - diving but no diving board...

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    cbink's Avatar
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    Depth question - diving but no diving board...

    I have my quotes in and have decided on a builder and am about to pull the trigger but am having a last minute panic about depth.
    Below is the layout of the pool, deep end is on the left. Pool is approx. 38'x24' freeform and approx. 25,000 gallons (probably just under). Depth is 3.5' to 7' at present.


    There will not be a diving board but do have a waterfall with a slide and want the ability to dive in from the deck. I'm fine diving into 7' of water but I'm having a bit of panic about other people especially since I guarantee people will jump off the waterfall.

    Any thoughts on increasing the depth? Should I go an extra foot and make it 8'? I don't want to go crazy with it and have a real steep slope but do want to make sure it's safe.

    How deep have any of you gone for diving without a board?

    Thanks!
    38'x24' freeform IG gunite, 26k gallons, 3.5' - 7'
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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Depth question - diving but no diving board...

    How high is your waterfall going to be? Jumping off feet first should not be a problem, diving headfirst should be out of the question. You may want to make it deeper and stress to your guests that no diving off the waterfall is allowed. Warn them that diving is not safe and they do so at their own risk. You may also want to google a few pictures of folks living with C2-C5 fractures to drive the point home. Sorry if I am a little brusk about this but I work in the rehab field and I know what life is like for folks with spinal cord injuries.
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    Re: Depth question - diving but no diving board...

    Perhaps you add to the design of the waterfall to limit/prevent access to the area one would jump from. Could you allow for some planting among the boulders, small palm or other similar type plant. Maybe one of those Spanish sword plants would do the trick.
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    Re: Depth question - diving but no diving board...

    "Hey you kids!.......Get off my waterfall!"............(in my best Clint Eastwood voice)
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    cbink's Avatar
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    Re: Depth question - diving but no diving board...

    Quote Originally Posted by zea3
    How high is your waterfall going to be? Jumping off feet first should not be a problem, diving headfirst should be out of the question. You may want to make it deeper and stress to your guests that no diving off the waterfall is allowed. Warn them that diving is not safe and they do so at their own risk. You may also want to google a few pictures of folks living with C2-C5 fractures to drive the point home. Sorry if I am a little brusk about this but I work in the rehab field and I know what life is like for folks with spinal cord injuries.
    No apology needed for briskness and driving it home. My BIL was in a car wreck last Jan and has a C5 break as a result. It's terrifying the change that it causes (he has shoulder movement, reasonable arm and wrist movement but almost no motor control of his hands/fingers) and seeing a healthy guy severely limited in what he can now do is a major driving force behind this.

    I will be absolutely adamant about no diving off the waterfall and will have no tolerance on that - there'll be no second chances, do that and they're out the pool, period. To be able to do that the pool would have to be 12'-15' at that point and the pool isn't going to be big enough to support that kind of depth at the deep end. I think I'm going to get a sign printed and permanently fixed to address just that concern as ell as other pool rules. I can safely dive into my inlaws pool which is a sports pool 3.5'-5.5'-4.5' but that's because I have been taught how to shallow dive. I do want people to be able to have fun and jump in safely which is why I originally thought 7' would be fine as I considered this more than deep enough to jump in feet first. The waterfall is approx. 5' but I think the area that could be jumped off is likely to be lower than that.


    Quote Originally Posted by harleysilo
    Perhaps you add to the design of the waterfall to limit/prevent access to the area one would jump from. Could you allow for some planting among the boulders, small palm or other similar type plant. Maybe one of those Spanish sword plants would do the trick.
    The waterfall is approx. 5' tall at its highest but will have 3 levels effectively to it. Your idea is a good one and I will see if I can limit jumping to the lowest level only. I will need to check with the PB exactly how high that will be.
    38'x24' freeform IG gunite, 26k gallons, 3.5' - 7'
    8t Moss rock waterfall with gunite slide
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    Re: Depth question - diving but no diving board...

    I didn't get a pool to stress myself out trying to dissuade a natural behavior, there's already enough to worry about around the pool and in life. We made it deep enough (8 1/2') so we can say, dive over there. BTW - My feeling is that a properly designed diving pool is at least as safe, if not safer, than one not designed for diving because people dive (at least as it relates to head contact with the pool bottom injuries). Teenagers don't always listen and someone willing to enforce the rule won't always be around. This may be incorrect but it's my take on the subject. Thought about going a little deeper (9 - 9 1/2') but didn't.

    IIRC, a good number of accidents with diving boards relate to contact with the diving board itself. Don't know about that but it seems possible.

    With no diving board in your pool, you could just make the slope steeper going down (say starting at 5 1/2') to 8' or whatever and not take away any of the shallow end. I would think this because you are not trying to create an official "dive envelope" to code, which would require a more gradually sloped pool. This would give you much of the benefit of a deeper pool but not all of the negatives (smaller shallow end).

    Always tough choices, depth, finishes, etc. Just do what you can be happy with and sleep comfortably.
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    Re: Depth question - diving but no diving board...

    I want to echo what has been said about diving being too dangerous in the situation as you describe. Yes, the depth is an issue, but so is the idea of diving from someplace other than a designated spot. e.g. a diving board.

    This issue has been on my mind, we started construction yesterday (you can read about the saga in here in this very forum new-pool-southlake-tx-near-dallas-t63592.html ).

    But, I wanted to share with you some "diving envelope" guidelines that I found....see the attached document from a builder who was clever enough to locate and repackage the guidelines from the American National Standard for Residential Inground Swimming Pools into a PDF.

    Hope this helps.
    19' x 37' Freeform IG; 25,500 gallons; max depth 8'6" with diving board; sun bench and swim out shelf. PebbleSheen Blue Granite Finish; Noble Tile--NVSA616 Peacock; Sandstone Retaining Wall; Oklahoma Flagstone Coping, Aggregate Deck; Small Water Feature w/ Moss Rock (70% flats and 30% boulders) Jandy Stealth 2HP Pump and CV460 Filter; AquaCal SQ156 Heat Pump/Chiller; Polaris 380 pressure cleaner w/ Halcyon boost pump.

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    Re: Depth question - diving but no diving board...

    Sorry the attachment I mentioned in my last post ended up being too big so it would not upload.....here are some links where you can get the information:

    http://www.srsmith.com/media/47241/06-0 ... andard.pdf

    http://www.divingboardsafety.net/Standa ... -pools.pdf

    http://www.poolsupplyunlimited.com/Prod ... 134638.pdf
    19' x 37' Freeform IG; 25,500 gallons; max depth 8'6" with diving board; sun bench and swim out shelf. PebbleSheen Blue Granite Finish; Noble Tile--NVSA616 Peacock; Sandstone Retaining Wall; Oklahoma Flagstone Coping, Aggregate Deck; Small Water Feature w/ Moss Rock (70% flats and 30% boulders) Jandy Stealth 2HP Pump and CV460 Filter; AquaCal SQ156 Heat Pump/Chiller; Polaris 380 pressure cleaner w/ Halcyon boost pump.

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    Re: Depth question - diving but no diving board...

    I'm glad I have a board, that's the main attraction for the teenagers and younger kids too, my pool is 8' deep. Some risk is inherent with any activity, it can be minimized by proper pool design, supervision and common sense on the part of the user. I know common sense is sometimes lacking, and if anyone did get hurt it would be a catastrophe, but I think sometime the danger is overstated. I always have wondered why the boards were removed from our public pool that is 12' deep, was there really that much risk or was the decision based upon fear. My guess is many more people drown than are hurt diving into swimming pools.
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