Suggested Meet Warm-Up Procedures
The NFHS Swimming and Diving Rules Committee recommends schools follow the Meet Warm-up Procedures located on page 5 of the rules book. It is vitally important to review appropriate supervision protocol, safety suggestions, proper management of pace/sprint lanes, lane selection and other pertinent issues to aid in organizing warmups to ensure a safe, healthy and sportsmanlike environment. It is important each school maintains an established warm-up procedure that focuses on risk minimization and communicates that procedure to visiting schools/teams. Coaches should insist that their athletes always follow the rules and site procedures for warm-ups to provide an environment free of unnecessary injuries. This includes lane occupancy and number of athletes in the water at one time.
Responsibility of Official, Competitor and Lap Counter in Distance Events
When lap counter malfunctions occur (i.e., the lap counting device is inadvertently dropped into the water or an incorrect count is shown), it is the responsibility of the competitor to know the lap count and complete the prescribed distance. However, if the lap counter somehow aids the competitor, violates deck position or interferes with the competition, the competitor in that lane shall be disqualified. All competitors of the team in the race shall be disqualified if the lap counter enters the water in accordance with Rule 3, Article 4 and penalties. In the case of the starter sounding the warning device at an incorrect time, the referee has the authority to intervene. Swimmers may be instructed to swim additional distance to complete the race; if no other remedy is usable, the referee may order the race to be re-swum when there is obvious unfairness caused by outside factors. The competitor shall not be penalized for circumstances out of the competitor’s control.
Updating Diving Rules
Several rules pertaining to diving were updated, clarified, and enhanced to promote participation and risk minimization. Standing takeoffs are now permitted, which provides an opportunity for divers who are learning new skills to participate in the competitive environment earlier. This concept speaks to the NFHS education-based philosophy. Permitting use of temporary adhesives and promotion of diving warmup between sessions during championship meets minimizes risk to the competitor; clarification of protocol if the dive is announced incorrectly and provides the diver options for corrective action.