The rules of the
Federation Internationale de Natation (FINA),
the international federation responsible for the sports of
swimming, diving, synchronized swimming, and water polo, require
there to be only one recognized member federation of FINA in each
country throughout the world.
For the United States of America, that member federation is United
States Aquatic Sports (USAS).
USAS, with its own Code of
Regulations, was formed to become the U.S. member of FINA in
1980, when the Ted Stevens Amateur Sports Act of 1978 took effect
in the United States and required restructuring of many sports
USAS deliberately attempts to play a minimal role within the United
States, leaving primary responsibility for the governance of each
of the aquatic sports to the members of USAS. The governing bodies
United States of
America Swimming, Inc. (USA Swimming)
United States Diving (USA Diving)
United States Synchronized Swimming, Inc.
USA Water Polo, Inc.
United States Masters Swimming, Inc.
By law, USAS must present a single organization
to represent the United States NGBs internationally. By choice, the
NGBs have also determined to delegate to USAS the responsibility of
conducting a national convention. The USAS Convention allows for
economies of scale and permits the leadership and membership of the
various NGBs, to get together to talk over common problems and
concerns. If, and when, the revenues of the convention exceed
expenses, the surplus is dedicated to sending the US teams to the
World Swimming Championships.