OTAC loves to run the best swim meets it can, but to do that we need swimming officials

Stroke and Turn Officials are the people in white polos/khaki pants at meets. They make sure that the swimmers conform to stroke and turn rules (and DQ the ones that don't). If you are a former swimmer or just a person who is really good at learning/applying rules (and you can tolerate being splashed!), then S&T is the place for you.

Administrative Officials are the people at the computer table at meets. They set up the events/heats/lanes of a meet and record accurate times (and DQs) for swimmers. If you work well with people AND technology (both of which can occasionally be fussy), then check out becoming an AO.

I became a swim official for a variety of reasons:

1. It really helped me (and my swimmers) to understand the rules of the sport better, which translated to fewer DQs.

2. It gave me something productive to do during all those long swim meets you have to tote your swimmer(s) to and wait around for anyway.

3. It helped to defray some of the expenses of swim meets. You can at least get meet fees for intrasquad meets (OTAC only meets) waived and usually other teams will waive their meet fees or give gift cards if you officiate at their meets.

4. It's a great way to get your mandatory volunteer hours in without fighting for a spot on the sign-up sheet.

5. You always get a good spot to watch the meet. (In fact, due to Covid-19 this swim season there may be limits on spectators for swim meets, especially the indoor ones. So if you want to guarantee you get a poolside spot to watch the action, come be an official!)

6.You get to meet some really cool people and build relationships with other dedicated swim supporters.

7. It shows your dedication, commitment and support of your swimmers. This has motivated my swimmers and helps them to recommit to do their best. They might even think you're cooler with a spiffy Swim Utah official name tag standing poolside each swim meet (maybe).

In any case, WE NEED YOU! OUR SWIMMERS NEED YOU! YOUR SWIMMERS NEED YOU!

If you've considered becoming an official, you must attend a mini-clinic to begin the process. With COVID restrictions, these clinics are usually held via Zoom. We're not sure how often they'll be doing these going forward, but if I know you are interested, I can let you know about upcoming clinics. If you have questions about the process, you can contact me (Kenny Sonomura) at [email protected] or 801-404-4953.