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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 Bylaws, 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 organizations.  The mission of USAS is to serve its member organizations by providing representation and advocacy within the international aquatics federations.​

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 (aka NationalGoverning Body) are:

United States of America Swimming, Inc. (USA Swimming)
United States Diving (USA Diving)
United States Artistic Swimming, Inc.
USA Water Polo, Inc.
United States Masters Swimming, Inc.