1. Officials updates
2. Are you
ready for your close-up?
3. Role of the reserve official
4. How would you handle this situation?
|Welcome to the Officials Newsletter.
The purpose of this newsletter is to provide a foundation that allows for direct on-going communication with each of you. Articles will cover the
technical rules and interpretations, situations, application deadlines for upcoming meets, news from the Official Committee, etc. If you have any
feedback, comments or suggestions for stories (or even want to submit an article), please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org. |
In addition to the articles in this
newsletter, I want to give you a few updates from the National Officials Committee:
Rule 102.10.2 states in pertinent part: "All officials acting in the capacity of Referee,
Starter, Administrative Official, or Stroke and Turn Judge at a swimming meet SHALL be certified in such position by their LSC prior to being assigned
to officiate in that capacity." Thus, the requirement applies to all meets, and that is further confirmed by the language in rule 102.10.4 that
expressly requires the Administrative Official for dual meets. The "should" language in rule 102.10.3 is an accommodation to allow
meets to be held when each of the positions listed in the rule cannot be filled. Place Judges, Clerk of Course, and an Announcer are luxuries, for
example. The Administrative Official IS NOT.
Note, the Referee and
Administrative Official are separately dealt with in Rule 102.10.3 as officials who can act in only one capacity. That means effective September 1 of
this year, the minimum number of officials needed for both regular meets and dual meets will increase by one. The Education Subcommittee
has developed an overview and certification requirements for the position on the website. It can be found here.
There will be four national Championship meets this summer – Open Water Nationals, Phillips
66 Nationals/World Championship Trials, US Open and Speedo Junior Nationals. Applications for these meets can be found on the USA Swimming Website.
Please check your calendars and come join us for these important events.
A number of years ago, minimum standard guidelines were established with a consensus of the LSC Officials Chairs;
however each LSC may set its own requirements above and beyond these. Therefore, it’s best to contact your LSC Officials Chair with questions
about your local certifications.
Look forward to hearing from you.
Clark Hammond, National Officials Chair
Ready for Your Close-up?
By Mary Jo
Southern California Swimming
There are many ways to look at
a swim meet, but join me at this Oscar time of year to view your next swim meet as a movie production. Successful movies depend on teamwork
across a wide array of tasks and talents just as a successful meet does. The movie industry depends on successful movies to expand; our sport
needs successful meets to expand.
Envision the host and the meet director
as the producers; the meet referee as the movie director; the administrative referee as the executive producer. There is the commissary
(hospitality), the set (facility), the production crew (leadership team and deck officials), and, most importantly, the cast starring the athletes and
the supporting cast (coaches).
Why do we want a successful
movie/meet? Successful movies attract fans and create a desire for more movies. Think of recruiting and retention of swimmers through
positive experiences at meets. Think of losing fans (participants) when your production drags, has long periods of inaction, or participants are
Most of us start in the sport as parents of swimmers drafted
to help at the next meet. Some of us remain in invisible production tasks; some of us move to the visible side and higher profile positions in
the production. Regardless of our role in a particular production, every member should retain a commitment to creating a positive atmosphere for
that moment when the camera rolls (the race starts).
profile has risen to become the premier summer Olympic sport. At every level, whether a novice meet or Olympic Trials, it is important that we
put on a good show from pre-meet planning to the final competition race. Everyone on the production team must know and understand the script, be
clear on his/her individual role and responsibility, and be committed to all participants having a positive experience.
Let’s make a movie that parents, grandparents, and fans want to see…and recommend to
friends. Whatever your production role at the next meet, make sure you are ready for your close-up!
Role of the Reserve Official
By Jackie Allender, Oregon Swimming
At a recent meet an official asked his/her
chief judge “What did I do wrong to be given this assignment?
assignment was reserve official.
This is a new position for many people.
It is generally used at championship meets, and always dependent on the number of available officials.
The reserve official steps in for a stroke or turn judge who has indicated a possible disqualification.
So the reserve official needs to watch the officials in their assigned area almost as
closely as the chief judge. He or she needs to be aware of the protocol requirements for more than one position, and be able to step into position at
a moment’s notice.
This allows the official with the potential call
to speak with the chief judge and not worry about what is happening in the pool. The chief judge then can relay the communication to the deck referee.
The official’s responsibility at this point is to be available if the deck referee has any questions and to sign the disqualification slip once
the disqualification is approved.
Once the disqualification process has
run its course, the reserve official is replaced by the original official.
Timely processing of disqualifications allows for smoother meet operations. The swimmer is notified in a timely manner and the disqualification slip
also gets into the hands of the administrative referee in a timely fashion. This in turn allows for quicker processing of results.
If you receive the assignment of reserve official, remember that you are providing a service
that allows for smoother meet operations.
A worthy goal in service to our
How Would You Handle
By Dan McAllen, Chair, Rules & Regulations Committee
You are the Meet Referee for your LSC Championships. A swimmer qualifies for finals in the 200 butterfly and 50 free
events. The meet is being swum using USA Swimming National Championship scratch procedures (207.11.6). The 200 butterfly is the second event in the
evening program and the 50 free follows two events later. During the evening’s first final you are approached by the swimmer who has qualified
in the 200 butterfly and 50 free and he relates to you that he cannot swim the 200 butterfly because he pulled a shoulder muscle during warm-up and it
hurts to extend his arms outward. It does not hurt to lift his arm, however, and he is sure it will not be a problem to swim freestyle and wishes to
remain in the 50 free and the 400 free relay.
#1: Should you allow this swimmer to take a medical scratch from the 200 butterfly, but allow him to swim the 50 free and the 400 free
Query #2: What if, upon delving
into this situation, you learned that this swimmer was seeded into lane 8 for the 200 butterfly and lane 4
for the 50 free, and the competitor in lane 5 in the 50 freestyle was also in the 200 butterfly? Would this affect your decision?
Answer: Nothing in the rulebook prevents you from granting the
requested relief. When dealing with injuries, it is always difficult since we are at the mercy of the athlete to tell the truth regarding a medical
condition. On the other hand, since this is not covered by the rules, nothing requires you to grant the requested relief either, and you could tell
the athlete that if you grant him the medical scratch he is out of all remaining events in the session.
It is suggested that prior to granting the requested relief the Referee should be satisfied that other athletes are not
prejudiced by your decision. Are you mind reading? Maybe, but it is your responsibility to ensure that the playing field is level for all competitors.
It would be hard to argue that the swimmer in lane 5 in the 50 free isn’t disadvantaged by allowing the lane 4 swimmer to rest while the athlete
in lane 5 is swimming a 200 fly two events earlier.