Swim BC Officiating Pathway
As your swimmer grows and moves through the program, we encourage our RMSC parents and guardians to also develop their skills as officials and to move through the Swimming Canada Officials Pathway. Being on deck as a volunteer is a great way to watch your swimmer race and support the community by volunteering your time to swim meets and competitions around the country.
Below are the recommended levels and training courses for where your swimmer is in our program. We strongly encourage you to start on your development as an official and volunteer right away, as we will need all hands on deck come May when we host our first swim meet in 5 years!
The first step to becoming an official on the pool deck is to activate your officals account on the Swimming Canada website. If you are just starting on your education as an official and need an account set up in your name, please email our officials coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have already started on the officiating pathway, please head to the link below to sign in:
Officials Learning Management System
You can start right away on working through your levels! The following courses are currently offered online:
Introduction to Swimming Officiating (formerly Timekeeper)
Clerk of Course
Do you have previous experience as an Official in the BCSSA? Check out the link below for information on how to transition onto the Swim BC Pool Deck:
Transitioning BCSSA Officials to SCN Certification Levels
LEVEL I – RED PIN
If your swimmer is in BRONZE or SILVER, we encourage you to complete the requirements to be reconized as a LEVEL 1 -RED PIN. In order to successfully achive this level, the following steps must be completed:
A. Complete the Introduction to Swimming Officiating clinic. B. Complete the Safety Marshal clinic .
C. Complete registration in the Swimming Canada Officials Registration System.
LEVEL II – WHITE PIN
If your swimmer is in GOLD or YOUTH 1 and 2, we encourage you to complete the requirements to be reconized as a LEVEL 2 -WHITE PIN. In order to successfully achive this level, the following steps must be completed:
A. Certify in Level I by obtaining two successful deck evaluations in the role of Timekeeper.
B. Complete the Judge of Stroke/Inspector of Turns clinic and obtain two successful deck evaluations.
C. Complete one other Level II clinic listed below and obtain two successful deck evaluations:
i. Chief Timekeeper; ii. Clerk of Course; iii. Chief Finish Judge (CFJ) / Chief Judge Electronics (CJE); iv. Meet Manager; v. Starter.
LEVEL III – ORANGE PIN
If your swimmer is in SENIOR 1 OR 2, we encourage you to working towards the requirements to be reconized as a LEVEL 3 -ORANGE PIN. In order to successfully achive this level, the following steps must be completed:
A. Complete all of the clinics listed under Level II;
B. Complete the Recorder-Scorer clinic;
C. Certify in three additional positions listed under Level II by obtaining two successful deck evaluations in each position;
D. Conduct the Level I – Introduction to Swimming Officiating clinic under the supervision of a Level IV or V official.
Positions at a Swim Meet
The Meet Manager is responsible for planning and organizing every aspect of the meet, and making sure it runs without a hitch. From registering the meet with BCSSA months in advance, through inviting coaches from other clubs to register, handling the torrent of entry information as it comes in, right through to making sure the awards are prepared and distributed properly, this job requires someone with awesome patience, perseverance and attention to detail if the meet is to be a success.
Separated they live in BookmThe referee has the overall authority and responsibility for seeing that the competition complies with all of the appropriate rules and regulations. The referee resolves all questions related to the conduct of the swim meet and reviews any disqualifications. To train as a referee, an individual must first have been certified as a starter for a minimum of one year, and must be recommended for advancement by the regional officials chairperson.
If you have good organizational skills, the clerk of course position may be for you. The clerk of course greatly contributes to a well-run meet. The clerk of course checks swimmers into the meet, “scratches” swimmers that are absent or do not intend to swim an event, and seeds swimmers according to their entry times.
Safety is an important concern at swim meets, and the marshal is assigned the important responsibility of maintaining a safe swim environment. This may include supervision of warm-ups, crowd control on deck, and supervising the behaviour of swimmers in and out of the pool.
The starter ensures that all swimmers receive a fair and equitable start. The starter works closely with the referee, and assumes responsibility for the start at the referee’s signal. The starter steps the swimmers onto the starting blocks or into the water, directs the swimmers to “take their mark”, and in conjunction with the referee, determines when a false start has occurred. The starter is also responsible for making sure that the starting equipment is in working order prior to the start of a session, and may instruct the timers in their duties. An individual must be certified as a stroke and turn official for a minimum of one year before he can train as a starter.
As a lane timer you operate various timing devices such as stopwatches or buttons that are attached to the automatic timing equipment. Lane timers are responsible for starting their watches at the Starter’s signal, and stopping their watches or activating their buttons when any part of the swimmer’s body touches the wall at the finish. The watch time is then recorded and used to determine the race results. Timer’s meetings are held just before the start of a session in order to explain the duties of the timer, and answer any questions.
The chief timer assures that all lanes have timers, working stop watches and buttons, clipboards, pencils, and timing cards or sheets. The chief timer starts two watches on every race, and delivers a working watch to timers when their own watches fail. The chief timer may also be asked to help train the lane timers at the beginning of a session.
The stroke judge walks along the side of the pool, typically between the backstroke flags, and observes the swimmers on his half of the pool. The stroke judge ensures compliance with the rules pertaining to the mechanics of the swim such as the arm stroke and kick. The turn judge observes the swimmers from either the start/finish end or turn end of the pool. The turn judge is responsible for judging the starts, finishes, and turns during each race. The stroke judge and turn positions frequently are combined into one position called stroke and turn judge. Before working on their own, stroke and turn judges must attend a training clinic and apprentice under the guidance of a certified stroke and turn official.
The swimmers’ times are entered from their timing results cards into a computer running Hy-Tek Meet Manager software, where they are matched to the individual swimmer’s name. The recorder is responsible for bringing all this information together, for posting the results of races, and for printing labels for the awards. Training involves attending a clinic, followed by an apprenticeship.