Stroke & Turn Judges

VSL Stroke & Turn Certification

Every youth swim team must rely on parent volunteers to serve as Stroke & Turn judges. Consider the position as that of an umpire, or a referee for rules regarding strokes & turns, starts & finishes. It's not necessarily a fun task b/c nobody wants to disqualify a six-year-old attempting the butterfly, but it's an absolute necessity. Please consider becoming a Stroke & Turn judge.

Here's what's required:

  1. Become certified any one of several ways outlined below.

  2. Shadow a veteran parent at a meet to learn some of the nuances of the task.

  3. Sign-up to serve for one half of one meet at a time.

  4. Learn as you go. The best part of the role is, THE SWIMMER ALWAYS GETS THE BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT, so do not worry about making mistakes b/c nobody's perfect. It may seem like a thankless job, but every team always needs parents certified to be Stroke & Turn judges.

All VSL Stroke & Turn judges must be certified by attending one of two VSL clinics:

  • Thursday, May 30th 6:30-8:00 PM @ JMU’s Godwin Hall, Classroom #341.

  • Wednesday, June 5th 6:30-8:00 PM @ JMU’s Godwin Hall, Classroom #341.

In addition to parent volunteers, meet directors & at least one adult coach from each team is required to attend one of the clinics.

There are two exemptions to participation in a clinic: 

  • If an S&T official worked at least two meets last year, they may re-certify at online via, which costs $25. If you plan to do this, please alert VSL Referee Beth Arnold. Also, please click VALLEY SWIM LEAGUE under League for a copy of the results to be sent to the VSL.

  • Existing USA Swimming, or YMCA certification. If you are USA Swimming, or YMCA certified, please alert VSL Referee Beth Arnold.

  • VHSL certification does NOT qualify for VSL certification.

Here is the link to the 2017 USA Swimming Rulebook:

For more information, please contact the Westover Waves head of Stroke & Turn Judges John Webb, or the VSL Referee Beth Arnold. Thank you.