Spectators at the National A.A.U. swimming championships in Indianapolis were impressed by the fine coordination, precise timing and smooth-muscled beauty of diver Paula Jean Myers. The 19-year-old U.C.L.A. sophomore is so adept at twisting her compact (5 ft. 4, perfect 34) figure through the air that only a few women divers give her real competition. To keep these talents sharp, Paula often works out on the trampoline, a springy canvas platform more familiarly used by male gymnasts (next page). A session with the device, she says, "makes you feel nice and stretched."
Paula Jean became the national outdoor platform diving champion in 1953. She says the trampoline "helps you get the feel of your twisting dives and somersaults. But you never, never use it in the last phases of your training for an upcoming event. It's just not like a real springboard." In the picture above she works for maximum stretch, while below she comes out of a tuck (left), somersaults (center) and arches in graceful layout.