"Around the Deck" masthead

October, 2011

Welcome to the New Season!
The kids are back in school, and a new season of swimming is upon us. Hopefully, you’re ready to dive in for another season of officiating. Volunteer officials are the lifeblood of Potomac Valley Swimming. Check the schedule below and contact the official-in-charge if you can help. We hope to see you at one of the many PVS Officials’ clinics during the months of October and November. And we look forward to seeing you on deck throughout the 2011-12 season!


Upcoming Meets

October 2011

Date Meet Location Officials Contact
7-8 Red & Black Invitational Univ. of Maryland Carrie Tupper
8-9 MAKO Fall Invitational GMU Tony Fitz
8-9 Harvest Moon Herndon Jim Thompson
9 PEAK All Freestyle Meet PGS&LC John Mason
8-9 RMSC Kickoff Meet Germantown Andy Anderson
8-9 MSSC All Free Fairland Lynne Gerlach
14-16 October Open Lee District
Fairland 1
Fairland 2
Brian Baker
Art Davis
Dan Young
21-23 Snow Pumpkin Invitational
Claude Moore Mike Ryan
22-23 MSSC Invitational Senior Meet Fairland Lynne Gerlach
22-23 Speedo Eastern States Senior Circuit PGS&LC John Mason
22-23 Halloween Mini Meet Madeira Ben Holly
29-30 Fall Gator Mini Meet Washington-Lee HS Chris Palmer
29-30 SDS Monster Mash
South Run Nora Burke

Officials’ Clinics
The Fall schedule of PVS Officials’ clinics has been posted on the website. There are clinics in both Maryland and Virginia for Stroke & Turn Judges, Starters, Referees, Timing System Operators, and Hy-Tek Operators during the month of October. Pre-Registration for the clinics is encouraged, but not required. You can just show up on the date and time of the clinic. Article 102.12.2 of USA Swimming rules states: “All officials acting in the capacity of Referee, Starter, or Stroke and/or Turn Judge at a swimming meet shall be certified in such position by their LSC prior to being assigned to officiate in that capacity.” Attendance at a clinic at least once every two years is a requirement for your certification. Be sure to check the website throughout the year for additional clinics.


You Make the Call
A swimmer in the 500-yard freestyle notifies the deck referee that he will be trying for a 100-yard initial split. After completing the first 100 yards, the swimmer exits the pool. Does the 100-yard split time count?
See the answer at the bottom of this newsletter.


Ready to Move Up?
So, you’ve been a Stroke & Turn Judge for about a year now. Are you ready to move up to a bit more responsibility on deck? Have you considered becoming a Starter? Or maybe a certified Chief Judge? The Stroke & Turn Judge is definitely the most important and crucial position on deck—and we’re all Stroke & Turn Judges. But you gain additional insight and appreciation for this sport when you advance to Starter, Chief Judge, Referee, etc. You also become more versatile and valuable to your club.

For all positions except Referee, when you feel you are ready to advance, you may attend the appropriate clinic and begin to fulfill the requirements for certification in that position. For advancement to Referee, the first steps include nomination by your club’s officials chair or a member of the Officials Committee, as well as an invitation from the Officials Committee.

Complete requirements for advancement to other positions can be found at http://www.pvswim.org/official/certification_requirements.html


Timing Judge’s Manual
Lanes 3 and 7 both exceed a .30 second difference between the pad time and the button time. A late touch is reported in lane 7, but timers report nothing out the ordinary in lane 3. Could it be a defective pad? A missed touch? A late button? Exactly how do we determine the official time for both lanes 3 and 7? The PVS Timing Judge’s Manual can help. You’ll find it on the PVS website, along with dozens of other helpful training resources. Reviewing these documents on a regular basis can sharpen your skills, regardless of your level of experience.


National Certification
A reminder to officials applying for National Certification (N2 and N3): Don’t forget to add clinics, mentoring experiences, Swimposium participation, etc. in the Activity History area of the online certification application. The requirements for National Certification include continuing education, mentoring and training. These experiences are listed in the Officials Tracking System as “other activities,” and are generally added by the official himself/herself. If you forget to include these activities, your application for N2 or N3 certification will be rejected. You’ve attended the clinics, you’ve helped mentor new officials on deck — make sure you get credit for these activities by adding them to the Officials Tracking System.


Feet First for Warmups
Did you ever wonder why we ask the swimmers to jump in instead of dive in during warmups? By jumping in feet first, your child is significantly reducing his/her chance of being injured. Although accidents are very rare in swimming, injuries do occur. The practice of jumping, rather than diving, is simply a safety precaution and a safety policy of USA Swimming. At your next meet, during warmups help to ensure that all swimmers enter the pool feet first for warmups. It’s all about safety.


Questions? Suggestions?
Do you have a question about officiating or a tip you’d like to share? Is there a rule that you’d like to have clarified? Do you have a suggestion for a future item in this newsletter? If so, please send your questions/comments to the newsletter editor, Jack Neill.


Resolution to ‘You Make the Call’
No, the swimmer left the pool prior to the completion of the race and is disqualified for failing to complete the prescribed distance. Article 102.16.4 A (1) (d) says that an initial split time is considered official only if the swimmer completes the event in compliance with all applicable rules. When a swimmer notifies the referee that he/she will be attempting an initial split, it’s helpful if the referee reminds the swimmer that the entire distance of the race must be legally swum in order to achieve the initial split.