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SWIMMING JUDGMENT
ATTITUDE
QUALITIES OF A "GOOD" REFEREE
LEVELS OF MEETS
NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS
NON-CONFORMING WATER TEMPERATURES

SWIMMING JUDGMENT

The Referee must have learned, acquired and possess a sound swimming judgment. Swimming judgment is based on a thorough knowledge of the Rules and the reason for the Rules: to ensure fair and equitable conditions of competition and uniformity in the sport. The Referee must not only support or overrule the decisions of every other Meet Official, but also judge every phase of the competition. Substituting opinion for rules (no matter how well-intentioned) invites protests and challenges.

ATTITUDE

The Referee's understanding of the Swimming Rules; respect for the other Meet Officials; and an understanding for those who are still gaining knowledge of the sport, contribute to a positive swimming attitude.

QUALITIES OF A "GOOD" REFEREE

ALERT; CALM; COMMUNICATOR; CONFIDENT; DELEGATOR; EXPERIENCED; FAIR; IMPARTIAL; INTERPERSONALLY SKILLED; KNOWLEDGEABLE; PROACTIVE; PROFESSIONAL; TEAM PLAYER.

In actuality, these qualities apply with equal force to all officiating positions as much as they apply to the Referee. However, one will not find these qualities stated in any of the Swimming Rules. They are basic, commonsense characteristics generally found in all persons. All of the listed qualities are necessary to better serve swimming's customers: the Swimmers, Coaches and other Meet Officials.

LEVELS OF MEETS

Every Referee will have commenced officiating BSF-sanctioned competitions at the club level. This should be done as frequently as possible, to retain your annual certification and for the experience.

Besides club level meets, the Referee also needs to officiate at one session at the National Championships each year. This is considered the premiere local meet and being selected to officiate at a Nationals should be considered an honour.

The next levels of officiating will take you outside The Bahamas. The BSF may nominate an experienced and proficient Referee to officiate at Regional Championships like the CCCAN Swimming Championships or the Caribbean Islands Swimming Championships, or Junior Championships like the CARIFTA Swimming Championships. Experience gained at a meet at this level is invaluable and is a virtual prerequisite to officiate at the next highest levels.

A BSF Referee may apply for inclusion on the FINA International Swimming Judges List. He or she must have officiated at the regional and junior levels and at the Zone Championships level. The Zone Championships for the Americas is the quadrennial Pan American Games.

Only persons on the FINA Officials Lists can nominate to officiate at the CAC Games, the Commonwealth Games, the FINA World Long and Short Course Championships, the Pan American Games and the Olympic Games.

Selection to officiate at any of these levels should be considered an honour. The BSF Referee selected not only represents him or herself but also represents the BSF, The Bahamas and the entire CCCAN region.

NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS

Officiating procedures at a National Championship are not much different from a club level meet. The major difference is that club level meets are usually timed-finals events while the Nationals incorporates timed-finals events within a preliminaries/finals' format. Consequently, the seeding procedures are different. The Referee should be mindful that there are 2 alternate swimmers for all finals' heats. If there are scratches or no-shows for a final, the Referee should ensure that the Announcer notifies the first and/or second alternate (Competition Rule CR9.2.3). Also, there is a greater need for Turn Judges at each end of the pool.

By National Championship Rule NCR14.6, there must be dual confirmation of a reported infraction: by 2 Stroke Judges; by a Stroke Judge and a Turn Judge; by a Stroke Judge and the Referee; by a Turn Judge and the Referee; or, by the Starter and the Referee. These Rules contemplate that 2 judging officials will both observe and agree that an infraction has occurred. The Referee may uphold or overrule the disqualification.

Referees should strictly apply the notification of withdrawal procedures as laid out at National Championship Rule NCR9. Particularly note National Championship Rule NCR9.6.1 regarding withdrawal from a final for medical or other reasons. The first part of the Rule requires that the Referee "be supplied with such medical documentation describing the nature and extent of the competitor's illness or injury as the Referee considers satisfactory." Referees should ensure that the documentation received from the swimmer is, in fact, from a medical doctor. The documentation should satisfactorily detail the nature and extent of the swimmer's injury or illness. This exempts the swimmer from the penalties for scratching from a final outside the allotted 30-minute time frame.

NON-CONFORMING WATER TEMPERATURES

Minimum Pool Temperature: 25 to 28 Centigrade, or, 78 Fahrenheit (Technical Swimming Rule TSR13.8).

At the commencement of a meet, the water temperature may not conform to Rule TSR13.8. The Meet Director/Meet Management Committee and /or Referee may allow the meet to continue. A club or competitor has the right to withdraw from the meet and claim a refund of the entire entry fee (Competition Rule CR8.3.1).

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