American Water Ski Association
Want To Become A Judge Or Scorer?
Here's All You Need To Know
of the best ways to enjoy a tournament is to participate as a judge or
scorer. We’re always in need of more help, and AWSA’s Judges and
Scorers’ Committee and board of directors have revised the judges and
scorers’ programs over the past few years in an effort to make it easier
to obtain and maintain an official’s rating. Here are answers to the
most frequently asked questions.
I’m a slalom skier; can I obtain an official’s rating just for my event?
for Pan Am (international) officials, judges and scorers can receive
their official’s rating in one, two or three events.
How do I become an assistant judge or scorer?
are several ways to become an Assistant Judge or Scorer. The
“traditional” program requires an aspiring official to assist at
sanctioned (Class C or higher) AWSA tournaments until an application
form has been completed. The requirements include various judging and
scoring activities done under the supervision of a Regular or Senior
Judge. Application forms for these programs may be obtained from the
Chief Judge or Scorer at any tournament, or by contacting USA Water
Ski’s Competition Department. Once the application form has been
completed, the applicant simply sends it in to USA Water Ski
headquarters to become an Assistant Judge or Scorer. These tasks can
usually be completed in two or three tournaments, if you work hard.
Also, EP skiers can apply (without completing the application process)
to headquarters for an Assistant Judge's rating in any event in which
they hold a current EP.
I’ve been skiing in NSL tournaments; is there anything I can do to
become a slalom judge?
A similar program has also been developed for NSL judges wanting to
achieve an Assistant Slalom Judge’s rating. The application requirements
are basically the same as with the “traditional” program, except that no
supervision is required by a Regular or Senior Judge. Once the
application form has been completed, the applicant must pass a “take
home” test and send the application form and test to USA Water Ski
headquarters. Application forms for this program may be obtained from
the Chief Judge or Scorer at any NSL tournament, or by contacting USA
Water Ski’s Competition Department.
I have an EP rating; am I eligible to become an Assistant Judge?
and Open rated skiers may receive an Assistant Judge’s rating in the event(s) in which they hold their rating by completing the top portion
of the Assistant Judge’s application (or obtaining a signed, current
rating card) and sending it to USA Water Ski’s Competition Department.
I have an Open rating; can I become a judge?
rated skiers can test to become senior judges in the event(s) in which
they hold their rating, after attending a Judges and Scorers Clinic.
What do I need to do to maintain my Assistant Judge’s or Scorer’s rating?
you need to do is work four tournaments every two years in order to
maintain your rating. Assistant Judges and Scorers are no longer
required to attend Officials Clinics in order to maintain their rating
(although you must attend a clinic before applying to upgrade to Regular
Judge or Scorer).
How do I make sure I get credit for working at a tournament?
every effort is made to keep track of who has worked as a judge or
scorer at a tournament, the best way to avoid “missed credits” is to
double check the paperwork. Make sure the Chief Judge and Scorer have
you (and your Membership number) properly recorded in the tournament’s
Record of Officials, and make sure you have your personal official’s
record completed and signed at each tournament.
I’m an Assistant Judge (or Scorer), but I mostly ski at Record
tournaments; is there a way to receive credit towards my Regular
official’s rating at a record tournament?
Judges may now fill some of the shore judging positions at Class E
Record Capability tournaments. Assistant Judges and Scorers may also
receive credit at a Record Capability tournament for work performed
under the direct supervision of one of the event officials who is
actually judging or scoring an event. In the slalom and jumping events
(and tricks event with respect to scoring only), the assistant official
may initially judge the contestant’s score, subject to revision or
correction by the supervising official. In the tricks event, an
Assistant Judge may work as an “extra” trick judge; immediately after
each skier or event, the supervising judge reviews the Assistant Judge’s
score. Assistant Scorers may also receive credit for work (under the
general supervision of a Senior or Regular Scorer) at Record Capability
tournaments with the Chief Judge’s approval when there are not enough
Regular or Senior Scorers available.
I’m an Assistant Judge (or Scorer); what do I need to do to upgrade to
There are two ways
to complete the requirements for upgrading to Regular Judge or Scorer.
The “traditional” approach involves completing various quantitative
requirements (basically working at tournaments in various capacities),
including attendance at an Officials’ (Judges and Scorers) Clinic. A
“fast track” program is also available as an alternative route to
becoming a Regular Official. Under the “fast track” program, Assistant
Judges and Scorers may apply to test (in a supervised setting) for an
upgraded rating upon (1) serving as an Assistant Chief Judge (or Scorer)
at 2 or more tournaments (Class C or above); (2) attending a sanctioned
Judges and Scorers Clinic; and (3) submitting a resume to the Judges'
and Scorers’ Committee for approval (by a majority vote) demonstrating
that the applicant has adequate experience and knowledge (substantially
equivalent to applicants participating in the traditional judges' and
scorers’ training and evaluation programs) to properly judge or score
the event(s) for which an upgrade is sought. “Substantially equivalent”
experience and knowledge may be demonstrated on a case-by-case basis
such as through coaching experience or a coaches rating (e.g., a Level 3
Coaches rating), open skier’s rating, national/world record performances
as a skier, etc. Once the requirements of either of these upgrading
programs have been completed, the official needs to complete an
open-book test. Regular Slalom and Tricks Judges must also take a
practical test involving the calling of several slalom and/or trick
passes. Information about these programs may be obtained from the Chief
Judge or Scorer at any tournament, or by contacting USA Water Ski’s
I’ve been a Regular Judge (or Scorer) for many years; how do I get my
You may test
to become a Senior Judge or Scorer once you have attended an Officials’
Clinic and completed certain quantitative requirements. These
quantitative requirements include work as a Chief Judge (or Scorer) as
well as general participation as an event judge (or scorer), including
work as an event judge (or scorer) at three or more Regional or National Championships. Once all quantitative requirements have been completed,
you should contact USA Water Ski’s Competition Department to arrange to
take an open-book test and practical exam. You should also review the
"fast track" programs to see if you're eligible to accelerate your
eligibility to upgrade your judges or scorers rating.
I’m a Regular Judge (or Scorer) and I would like to upgrade , but I
haven’t been able to work at three Regionals or Nationals. Is there
anything I can do?
officials gain valuable experience from work at important tournaments
like the Regional and National Championships, under exceptional
circumstances (such as pregnancy, medical problems, military duty, or
temporary job assignments) a Regular Official may apply to the Judges
and Scorers Committee for a one-time hardship to allow work at a Record
Tournament to be counted towards one of the Regional/National Tournament
credits otherwise required to upgrade.
I’ve held my official’s rating for several years, but I wasn’t able to
meet all of the quantitative requirements for the last two years. Is
there anything I can do?
Judges and Scorers Committee often grants one-time hardships to
officials who are unable to complete all of their biennial
requirements. A written hardship application form must be submitted to
USA Water Ski headquarters before May 1 of the following year. The
hardship form may be obtained by contacting USA Water Ski’s Competition
My official’s rating was downgraded because I didn’t participate in any
tournaments during the last few years. I would like to become active
again; is there any way I can be reinstated as an official?
Yes. Officials who have been downgraded may apply within five years for
reinstatement once they have attended an Officials' Clinic. Regular and
Senior Officials must also retest.
A friend of mine is a Pan Am Judge; how do I become qualified as a Pan
Pan Am Judges are
qualified to judge international team events in the United States and
elsewhere. To become a Pan Am Judge, you need to take an additional test
and practical exam under IWWF rules. If you’re interested, USA Water
Ski’s Competition Department can provide you with more information.
As you can see, there are many ways to become a judge or scorer. We would
love to have your help. For more information contact USA Water Ski’s
Competition Department at 1-800-533-2972.