The Atlantic Diving Team is an affiliate of USA Diving, Inc., the national governing body of springboard and platform diving in the United States. USA Diving is a successor to the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) and is an independent non-profit corporation formed to promote and improve diving in the United States. It is a member of the United States Aquatics Sports, Inc. and FINA (the international federation that governs diving and several other aquatic sports). USA Diving sanctions Novice, Junior, Senior and Masters diving programs. The Atlantic Diving Team members may participate in any of these programs, but most of Atlantic Diving Team competitive efforts are focused within the Junior diving program. The USA Diving Junior program includes divers who are age 18 and under. Divers compete with other divers in their age-group. The following age-groups are recognized at competitions: 13 & Under, 14-15, and 16-18. Some competitions allow for 9 & Under and 11& Under age-groups as well. A specified number of dives are required for each age and gender group.
USA Diving Region III is one of ten junior diving regions established by USA Diving to feed into five junior diving zones. The qualifying system is set up such that the regional competitions serve as qualifying meets for the zone competitions (JO East Nationals in the Spring), and the zone competitions serve as qualifying meets for the Junior and Age Group National Championships in the summer. Regional competitions are conducted twice yearly: Spring Regionals in March and Summer Regionals in June. The Spring Regionals qualify to JO East Nationals in April while the Summer Regionals qualify to the Summer Zones. The Summer Zones qualify to the Junior and Age Group National Championships, which occur annually in August.
In addition to being an affiliate of USA Diving, Atlantic Diving Team is also a member club of the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU). The AAU is a national multi-sport body that recently returned diving to its list of sponsored sports. There are several AAU-sanctioned meets throughout the year that Atlantic Diving Team may host or attend, including the annual AAU National Championship held each summer.
When the Mission Bay Aquatic Center went under in 1989, Michele Mitchell and Jose Rocha figured they were done as a diving coach. Many of the former Mission Bay divers transferred to the nears club to train like Coral Springs, Fort Lauderdale and others quit altogether because they didn't want to travel that far. They didn't have anyone to coach.
But Mitchell, a member of the 1984 & 1988 USA Olympic team and Rocha, a member of the 1984 Mexican Olympic team continued to work thanks to two girls who approached them personally.
"They said, 'If you leave, we're gonna quit.' They weren't ever going to dive again." Mitchell & Rocha said "Let's just coach for fun. A third girl joined the second day, and we had three girls for three months and it started growing from there." Did it ever.
From dose humble beginnings the Atlantic Diving Team was born.