Use of Spring Boards at Competitions (Rules Clarification)

Please see below an explanation of the rule regarding the number of springs allowed/required in the spring board (per Tom Koll, NJOCC; Cheryl Hamilton, NTCC and Claudia Krestschmer, NXCC):

Page 55 (Xcel chapter) and Page 91 (JO chapter):

“All Meet Directors must arrange to have boards that accommodate gymnasts of varying weight.  Any boards brought in to a competition must be assigned to an event and must be available to all gymnasts in that session for warm-up and competition.  The following 3-4 spring configurations for the springboard have been approved and may be utilized in USA Gymnastics sanctioned competitions:”

Here are the two issues which have arisen:

  1. Interpretation that the board must ONLY be used with 3 or 4 springs and some judges have informed the coaches they must take out additional springs to ONLY have 3 or 4 springs and that using more than 3 or 4 springs is a deduction.  Please refer people to the following sentence: ”…springboard have been approved and may be utilized in USA Gymnastics sanctioned competitions.”  It does not say MUST be utilized in that manner.
  2. Coaches do not want to take the back springs out of the board to accommodate the illustrations in the Rules and Policies.  Only the 3 illustrations for a 3-4 spring board are allowed for the use of 3 or 4 springs in a springboard.  The coach is not allowed to come up with a different configuration that suits his/her needs.  This would result in a deduction of 0.30 that will be taken for using incorrect apparatus specifications (P. 7 of the Code of Points).