Effective immediately, swimsuits allowable for use in USA Swimming sanctioned or approved competition must either appear on the FINA Suit List or meet the definition of an “older suit” as defined above. As per USA Swimming guidelines, officials should assume that any particular suit worn by a swimmer is a legal suit unless it is obvious the suit does not meet any of the three criteria used to define an “older suit” as described above. Any protest regarding the legality of a particular suit should be handled in the same manner as any other protest under the provisions of Article 102.11 of the USA Swimming rulebook.
Please also remember that only one swimsuit may be worn during competition. However, for age group competition, it is permissible for an athlete to wear a single garment underneath his or her competition swimsuit for modesty and/or privacy reasons.
You Make the Call
Spring Championship Meets
PVS Senior Championships will be held March 11-14 at George Mason University. Officials wishing to work at this meet should submit the application found on the PVS website. You must apply no later than March 4 for specific deck positions. However, late applications and walk-ins are also welcome and will be assigned to available positions.
On the following weekend, March 18-21, PVS 14 & Under Junior Olympic Championships will be held at Fairland Aquatic Center in Laurel. The application to work at this meet can likewise be found on the PVS website. You must apply no later than March 11 for specific deck positions. Once again, late applications and walk-ins are welcome and will be assigned to available positions.
The Germantown Indoor Swim Center in Montgomery County will be the site of the 2010 Eastern Zone Southern Sectional meet, March 25-28. This meet is part of the Speedo Championship Series, and will feature elite swimmers from several states. You can apply to work and/or be evaluated at the Eastern Zone Southern Sectional meet by completing the application on the Eastern Zone website. This application must be received by the Eastern Zone Officials Chair no later than March 10 in order for the applicant to be considered for specific assigned positions (Deck Referee, Starter, Chief Judge, Admin Ref). Assigned positions will be notified no later than March 17. Applications for other deck positions will be accepted anytime.
All of these meets are “Officials Qualifying Meets,” offering the opportunity for formal evaluation at the N2 level (Juniors, Seniors) and the N2 and N3 levels (Sectionals). Any official interested in being evaluated at these championship meets must apply in advance.
Other championship meets in March include PVS Junior Championships, Mini Championships, and Spring Championships. More details in next month’s newsletter.
Report from San Antonio
New Officials / Advancing Officials
Types of Referees
Officials and the PVS Vision
In December 2009 the PVS Board of Directors adopted the following Vision Statement:
This vision statement is important to PVS because it provides a target we can strive toward. In a sense, having a target for PVS is the same concept as a swimmer having a target that drives the swimmer’s development. For the swimmer, the target is a time. The time can represent qualifying for meets such as the Dolan Invitational or Olympic Trials, personal best time in an event, or--in the case of the very elite swimmer--breaking World Records. For PVS, our Vision Statement describes how we desire to operate. It provides guidance to members on what is important to the organization.
What can PVS officials do to help achieve the PVS Vision?
By virtue of being an official you are one of the “parent volunteers” that PVS needs to support its operations. Encourage other parents to get involved with PVS. Invite a new parent to be Timer or become a Stroke & Turn official. By getting others involved, you help build the volunteer base.
Think about joining one of PVS committees. For example, all the members of the PVS Officials Committee and just under half of the current PVS Board of Directors are volunteers. Volunteers are needed to head or assist in planning and executing various PVS programs. Right now there is a vacancy for the Safety Program Chair.
To “assure proper conduct” of a meet you must maintain your certification by attending a clinic, passing the officials examination, and working sessions to gain practical experience. If you are an experienced official, look for opportunities to mentor less experienced officials. If you are new to officiating, seek out the seasoned veterans to learn from their experiences. Above all remember that we are here to ensure fair and equitable competition.
PVS holds a “variety of competitions.” These meets cover a range of ages, ability levels and formats (e.g., timed finals open meets and prelim/finals championship meets). By consistently applying the technical rules of swimming we ensure the integrity of the sport. At the same time, we use age-specific or meet-specific common sense when interpreting the non-technical rules of swimming. Use the rules as a tool to allow the athlete to swim not as a barrier the athlete must overcome to swim.
When officiating over a “wide range of ability levels,” you may see unusual stroke and kick techniques. An unusual technique does not necessarily imply a DQ. A DQ is based on the written rule, not on the beauty of the technique. Call a DQ for what is observed and not inferred. The benefit of doubt goes to the swimmer.
Understand how the rules pertain to swimmers with disabilities. Look for ways to accommodate these swimmers and apply the technical swimming rules appropriately.
Work with coaches to ensure they understand the rules and procedures
of a meet. Clearly explain the DQ and ensure the coach understands the
rule violation. Only by understanding the DQ can the coach help a swimmer
During high school swim season, PVS officials working with high school-only officials run dual and championship meets. Use your experience to provide an environment for fun and fair competition.
As an empty nester I found another way of expanding my influence. I have worked a few college-level and Masters-level meets. Competitive swimming is more than a youth sport. It can be a lifetime activity for both the athlete and the official. By supporting Masters-level competition, I am gaining experience, promoting the reputation of PVS officials and supporting our community. At the same time, I am inspired by these older athletes. Who cannot be but inspired by watching an eighty-something climb up on the blocks, diving in at the start signal and complete a 100 yard Freestyle?
By putting in practice the points described above each time we walk on deck, we are doing our part to fulfill the PVS Vision.
Resolution to ‘You Make