3-2-5: All participating members of a relay, including the lead-off swimmer, must now be declared at the specified time and place prior to the start of the event. While there is no penalty for not indicating the leadoff swimmer specifically, there is an obligation to identify the four swimmers participating in the event. In addition, the name of the leadoff swimmer must be documented in cases where the swimmer is to be credited with an official time.
3-3-5: New language permits competitors to wear suits providing full body coverage for religious purposes. In addition, the rule avoids the need to obtain prior approval by the state association of a full body suit, worn for religious purposes. The added language allows for exercise of religious practice without creating a competitive advantage for the athlete. The referee must contact the state association, rather than the athlete or the coach, following the completion of the contest with concerns or inquiries.
3-3-6b, c, d: The rule change permits divers to use temporary adhesives for the diving event. New language allows divers to protect themselves from hand slippage, minimizing risks for the diver.
5-4-3 & NOTE: The protocol for conducting swim-offs and what purposes the time can be used was clarified.
A swim-off is used to determine whether the swimmer is placed in the consolation or championship heat in the subsequent round. Swim-off times are considered official and can be used for record setting or other purposes. However, the time performed in the preliminaries will be used to place the competitor in the subsequent race.
9-2-1: During championship meets, new language establishes when diving boards should be made available for practice if breaks between sessions extend longer than ten minutes. However, the meet manager retains the authority to establish more stringent guidelines prior to the start of competition, pursuant to facility accessibility, time constraints, etc. Access to practice dives/approaches should be as equitable as possible but does not require divers to perform an equal number of dives or approaches.
9-3-7 PENALTIES, 9-5-2, 9-5-5, 9-7-4f, 9-7-5k, 9-8-2c: The new rule permits standing forward takeoffs, clearly defining the proper procedure for performing a standing forward takeoff and the protocol for application of the mandatory two-point deduction. The standing forward takeoff is a critical part of the educational process in teaching new dives. This provision allows divers to participate in competition sooner and encourages growth in the sport.
9-5-4b: Clarifies that only four oscillations are permitted before the diver leaves the board. The removal of vague language clarifies the number of oscillations a diver may take while on the diving board and will assist officials in judging a dive.
9-6-2i, 9-6-4a, b: Language establishes protocol when an announcer error occurs. The diver should not be penalized for the error of meet personnel; the referee retains broad discretion to resolve such problems in the most equitable and efficient way possible.