Technical officials

Everyone working on poolside at all events organised by Swim England East Midlands are volunteers.  Officials for all of our sports are essential for well-run, high quality competitions for our athletes.

Volunteers make a huge contribution to aquatics in the Region. Everything that happens in our sport happens because of volunteers at some point.

We encourage athletes, parents and fans to get involved with our sport, not just as spectators but as volunteers with clubs, helping us run events with your technical expertise or by training to become an official.

Volunteering is a rewarding experience, benefiting everyone involved. It builds upon life skills, work skills, confidence and has a positive impact on both the sport and the volunteer.

Officials training 

Below you will find all the information you need to learn about becoming a technical official on the poolside. Use this guide to learn more about the Officials Pathway.

Regional Swimming Officials Coordinator

E: Swimming Officials

T: 01604 499469 

This is an introduction into the world of the swimming official. It covers the practical aspects of what is required of a timekeeper by means of a short theory session followed by a practical assessment.
 
The minimum recommended age for candidates to undertake this training is 14 years, and all need to be registered members of a British Swimming affiliated club or member of the Institute of Swimming (IoS).
 
Swim England East Midlands affiliated clubs organise Timekeeper Courses through their Workforce Development Co-ordinator. 
 
Club Workforce Development Co-ordinators should contact the Swimming Technical Officials Co-ordinator for instructions on how to run a Timekeeper Course.
There are two parts to the training of timekeepers:
 

Theory should be completed online through the Institute of Swimming

Practical must be completed at an event, using the competency sheet. This can be signed off by a licensed referee or J2S at an event acting in that capacity. Once completed you will need to upload both the theory certificate and competency sheet to Swimming Results. 

This online learning is the next step to achieving Judge 1 status for swimming technical officiating. This course is designed for people who are already qualified as a Time Keeper. The Judge 1 for qualified Time Keepers online learning is designed to help you to understand the roles of a:

  • Inspector of turns
  • Chief inspector of turns

You will also be introduced to the relevant FINA rules along with video footage which will help you to interpret how those FINA rules are applied in practice.

Pre-requisites: You must be at least 15 years of age at the start of the course and have completed the Time Keepers course.

Cost: £20

Theory: Online through the Institute of Swimming

Once you have completed the online theory copy the certificate, this will need to be uploaded to Swimming Results.Once this has been uploaded you will be sent your training logbook and further details for your practical assessment.

Practical: At this point, please make contact with your County Officials Coordinator to identify your next steps Completion of the log book will be evidence of poolside competence. After you have completed your practical assessment your log book will need to be uploaded to Swimming Results, please see below how to do this.

This is the first level of British qualification. It encompasses the role and duties of a Timekeeper, Chief Timekeeper and Inspector of Turns.

The minimum age to start training is 15 years. Candidates will be required to undertake some formal theory instruction and gain practical experience working on the poolside with a mentor. A course workbook is provided for completion after which there will be a practical assessment.

During the practical assessment, candidates will be required to answer questions orally. Upon qualification candidates will be attributed with the qualification Judge Level 1 on the British Swimming Database and will be encouraged to become a Licensed Official.

This online learning is the first step to achieving Judge 1 status for swimming technical officiating. The Judge Level 1 online learning is designed to help you to understand the roles of a:

  • Timekeeper
  • Chief timekeeper
  • Inspector of turns
  • Chief inspector of turns

You will also be introduced to the relevant FINA rules along with video footage which will help you to interpret how those FINA rules are applied in practice.

Cost: £20

Theory: Online through the Institute of Swimming:

Once you have completed the online theory you will receive a store a certificate, this will need to be uploaded to Swimming Results. Once this has been uploaded you will be sent your training logbook and further details for your practical assessment.

Practical: At this point, please make contact with your County Officials Coordinator to identify your next steps. Completion of the log book will be evidence of poolside competence. After you have completed your practical assessment your log book will need to be uploaded to Swimming Results, please see below how to do this.

This is the second level of qualification. It encompasses the role and duties in relation to all aspects of judging and the theoretical role and duties of Starter.

The minimum age to start training is 16 years and candidates must already have qualified as Judge Level 1. The training follows a similar format to that of Judge level 1 with formal instruction, mentored pool side training with workbook followed by a practical assessment.

When qualified, candidates will be attributed with the qualification Judge Level 2 on the British Swimming Database

Judge level 2s – starter

Candidates wishing to qualify as a Starter will be required hold the Judge Level 2 qualification and have completed a minimum of 20 hours post qualification experience as Judge Level 2.

Training will consist of a prescribed number of practical experiences as a Starter before undertaking a formal practical assessment.

Successful candidates will be attributed with the Starter qualification.

Accordion Content

The minimum age for training is 19 years providing the candidate is aged 20 years as at 30 November in the year of the theory examination.

This course contains theoretical instruction and specified practical experiences. It is followed by a formal examination in November after which successful candidates take a final poolside practical assessment leading to qualification as a British Swimming Referee.

Several months have been allocated between registration and the formal examination to enable candidates to undertake all the practical experience required to complete the course as well as the theoretical instruction.

Application forms must be submitted by 31 December of the previous year to allow sufficient time for completion of training in preparation for the November examination.

The new pre-requisites and application process for Referee training are available here: British Swimming Referee Training Process. Please ensure that you have familiarised yourself with them before applying for training.

Uploading evidence to Swim Results

Open Swim Results and open the heading “Members”. Then open the English/Welsh Member Options from the drop down list.

Log in or register to access Member Options

  • Click ‘View or upload a certificates to be added to your membership record click here’
  • Click ‘You can view and upload certificates here, click here to upload a new certificate’
  • Select certificate type from the drop down list
  • Upload file
  • Click ‘Upload Certificate’

Useful documents and information

FINA Rules

World Para Swimming Rules

Applying for and renewing an officials licence

Licensing

The Swimming Official Licensing scheme helps demonstrate that officials have undertaken education or training to ensure they are up to date with their knowledge. Anyone who qualified as swimming technical official prior to 2020 who wishes to apply for their first licence should email swimmingofficials@swimming.org for further details. Please head to the British Swimming website to renew an existing licence: Your licence must be renewed every 4 years.  

Purchasing courses for your club members 

If clubs wish to pay for a course for a club member that is run through the Institute of Swimming you can do this by following the guide ‘company and employee booking guide’ attached to this email, in the examples given the club would be the company and the club member would be the employee. The club can also give a percentage so for example the club will provide funding for 50% of the course, the remaining 50% would be payable by the learner at the checkout. If you don’t use purchase orders that’s fine, you can just write in any reference be it the name, club name, course name etc. If you have any queries please contact the IOS using the following details

Email: iosadmin@swimming.org 

Phone: 01509 640 640 (Monday to Friday 9 am until 5 pm)