At the Schroeder YMCA A+ Meet this weekend in Wisconsin, that featured pros like Anthony Ervin, meet officials were distributed the official officiating song, written in 2007 by Jeanette Hart, entitled “When do I raise my Hand?” See the lyrics above to know when you need to raise your hand.

Of course, there are plenty of nuances and other important rules in the USA Swimming rules book, but in terms of what you need to know for officiating an average age group meet, and it could take a full opera to explain the rules on breaststroke underwater pullouts, but Ms. Jeanette Hart has effectively boiled 176 pages down to a chorus and 6 verses.

When Do I Raise My Hand?

(To the tune of “If You’re Happy and You Know It”)
© 2007 Jeanette Hart


If you’re in the right position, raise your hand
If it’s in your jurisdiction, raise your hand
If you can cite chapter and verse
And the swimmer’s form is worse
If you see a disqualification, raise your hand


If the arms are simultaneous, keep it down
If the feet stay in relation, keep it down
But if the legs begin to flutter
Or the arms are churnin’ butter
If they recover under water: RAISE YOUR HAND!


If the swimmer’s on her back, keep it down
Turning motion, there’s no lack, keep it down
But if her toes curl on the gutter
Or to the wall she glides or flutters
If she ain’t on her back, RAISE YOUR HAND!


If he swims like a toad, keep it down
Pull-then-kick his stroking goes, keep it down
But if his elbows leave the water
Cuz he’s waving at your daughter
Or he makes a one-hand touch, RAISE YOUR HAND!


If she does a forward start, keep it down.
Swims a sidestroke barrel roll, keep it down
But if she stays underwater,
Walks along to look for quarters,
If she pulls on the rope, RAISE YOUR HAND!

Individual Medley

If he turns by the rules, keep it down
Does a finish then starts new, keep it down
If he forgets what stroke he’s swimmin’
Does a flipturn, not a finish,
Or swims breaststroke on the free leg, RAISE YOUR HAND!


If you’re working with a partner, write it down
“O” for OKAY, “X” for NOT, write it down
If you’re working by yourself
And the feet have left the shelf
But the friend’s still coming in, RAISE YOUR HAND!

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Braden Keith

The most common question asked about Braden Keith is "when does he sleep?" That's because Braden has, in two years in the game, become one of the most prolific writers in swimming at a level that has earned him the nickname "the machine" in some circles. He first got his feet …

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