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Armidale Little Athletics Association - Competition Afternoons

 During School Terms IV and I

Thursday from 5.00 pm (warm up) until about 6.30 pm to 7.00 pm - depending on numbers in group

COMMITTEE MEMBERS AND ON-FIELD HELPERS: Little Athletics Centres cannot function without the help and assistance of the parents of little athletes. Each venue requires the attention of a prescribed number of parents to ensure that it operates correctly and within the specified time frame, so it is important that each venue has its full complement of helpers.


PRESIDENT: Chairs each meeting; represents ALAA at LAANSW meetings; generally ensures smooth running of Centre.

VICE PRESIDENT: Performs President's duties in the absence of President or as directed by President.

SECRETARY: Takes the minutes of all meetings and distributes these to Committee Members; responsible for sending and receiving Centre correspondence; represents ALAA at LAANSW meetings.

TREASURER: Collects and receives all money due to the Centre; makes all payments authorised by the Committee; takes custody of, and keeps, books of account and records.

REGISTRAR: Receives all registration records and ensures these are filled out correctly; collects all registration fee payments and liaises with Treasurer; ensures all athletes are registered with LAANSW; maintains a register.

RECORDERS: Arranges for recording of weekly results; checks for record performances. Prepares relevant statistical, ranking and personal performances of little athletes to identify all little athletes eligible for awards. Liaises with the Centre's Registrar relating to the electronic registration of little athletes.

PUBLICITY: Provides publicity material to local press and web site; ensures that the Centre's activities are published; liaises with Records and Rankings Officer for and statistical information for publication. Publishes ALAA newsletter on the Internet.

COACHING: Implements a coaching program; organises coaches. Assists in identifying training course for parents to attend and qualify.

EQUIPMENT: Ensures equipment is in good order; ensures Centre has adequate equipment. Monitors the setting up of equipment for each weekly competition. Monitors that equipment is dismantled and correctly stored back in the equipment room. Should arrive at the oval by 4.15 pm to commence the distribution of equipment on the oval, ready for competition at 4.45 pm.

CANTEEN: Responsible for the operation and management of canteen facilities.

UNIFORMS: Attends to all matters relating to fitting out of the Centre's athletes with the official Centre uniform. Negotiates with suppliers for the manufacture of the Centre's uniforms. Arranging the purchase and distribution to each little athlete, upon payment; liaises with the Treasurer.


Remember parents, you do not have to have any previous experience in athletics, only the strong desire to help out to ensure that all parties; little athletes, officials, parent helpers and spectators thoroughly enjoy attendance at the Armidale Little Athletics weekly competition days.

The following information is presented to all parents to assist you in becoming familiar with the numerous helper positions that are required to be manned to ensure that the event venues function to their maximum potential to reduce any chance of delays etc.


TRACK AND FIELD EVENT: All record performances are to be verified by an official Armidale Little Athletics Committee Member.

COMPUTER DATA ENTRY: Parents assisting in the entry of the daily results on-site will be trained in the operation of specially designed program, to transfer the little athlete's performances from the daily results sheets into the results data base. More than one (l) parent can perform this function, daily or on a weekly rotational basis. One (l) parent coordinates the collection of the results, at regular intervals from the various venues and returns them to the computer room.

TIMEKEEPERs: The timekeeping function is quite precise.

CHIEF TIMEKEEPER: The Chief Timekeeper uses a multi-time stopwatch.

TIMEKEEPER:  Ensures that watches are in working order. Any watches not functional should be directed to the Equipment Officer. The timekeeper only uses the ON/OFF switch and times one (1) performance. The stopwatch time is only cleared on direction of the Chief Timekeeper.

When the timekeepers are ready for the next race, they watch the starter.

You start your watch when you see the smoke from the explosive cap (NOT THE SOUND).

The timekeeper keeps an eye on the athletes until approximately ten (10) metres from the finish, and then turns his/her attention to the finish line. The watch is stopped by identifying the torso (i.e. from the neck down to the waist) of their place runner (you time a place as allocated by the Chief Timekeeper, you do not time the finish by lanes).

After all athletes have completed the race the Chief Timekeeper will check his multi-stop watch time against each place timekeeper. Should there be any discrepancies then the Chief Timekeeper determines a cause for the discrepancy and allocates a time for the athletes place.

The time allocated to the athlete is determined to one (1) tenth of a second, ie a performance of 10.12 or 10.19, the performance of 10.2 is given to the athlete. You round up for any digit above the one (1) tenth of a second performance. Where a timekeeper does not have a place to time (fewer runners in a race) then they can be utilised as a second timekeeper on another place. Should there be more than one time on a place (two(2) watches) then the slower time is given to the athlete, in the event that three (3) watches time a place then the athlete is given the middle time.

The Parent Helper completes a results sheet, which includes the performances of each athlete in the race.

Any record performances are also determined in this way; the time that gives the athlete the record must also be the slower of the two (2) times, ie record = 10.8 and the other time is 10.67 (10.7) and the first place time is 10.78 (10.8) then the athlete gets an equal record (10.8) etc. A record slip is completed by all concerned at the time of record certification.

NOTE: The athletes are first placed in order that they finish, it is resolved who came first, second, third, etc, any `equal' placing is also resolved. In the event of two or more athletes recording the same time, then the athlete deemed to have come first will be accredited with the record.


GENERAL: All Parent Helpers are asked to be vigilant when entering information in the results folders. Ensure that the athlete numbers are the current season's numbers.


OUTER TRACK: The results are extracted from the Chief Timekeeper's results stopwatch tape for the event, and are entered IN FULL as indicated on the time slip.

Some events are conducted as a mixed group, being mixed sexes/same age, mixed ages/same sex, mixed ages/mixed sexes, etc. The individual Parent Helpers in each age group should list the performances of their little athletes on their sheets.

INNER CIRCULAR AND SPRINT TRACK: The parent helpers will record the results on their sheet.  The order will be given by the time keepers.  All athletes should line up in order of finish.

STARTER: The Starter controls the event once the athletes are released to start their event. The starter cannot start the athletes until the starter gets the all clear from the Chief Timekeeper. Once the starter gets the all clear, the athletes are called to their mark. Instructions are issued to the athletes, the starter then confirms he/she is ready to start the event with the Chief Timekeeper, he/she then goes behind the athletes. The starter must be able to view all the athletes from this position, and also be in sight of the timekeepers. For events under 800 metres (the athletes complete the running event in a lane each) the starter issues the instruction "on your marks...", a pause allows the athletes to get themselves ready in blocks/ crouch start. Then with a steady voice he issues `set...', ensures that the competitors are steady on their mark, the gun is then fired.

Should there be an early break from an athlete the starter then discharges the second cap to stop the athletes, to return back to the start. Instructions are issued to the athlete who is considered to have broken the start early.

If the track event is over 400 metres the starter issues the instruction "on your marks..." and after a short pause the gun is discharged (the word "set" is omitted).


RECORDER: Recorders enter the height of the bar in the space provided, a tick (
P) for a successful jump, a cross (X) for a failed jump or a pass (P) to pass a jump. At the end of the athletes three failed jumps, a ticket is issued with the athletes last successful performance. At the conclusion of the event the recorder does not need to `rank' the athletes, but may attempt to do so if they wish.

BAR ATTENDANT: Ensures that the bar is placed on the bar supports and is steady before the athlete is given the all clear to undertake his/her jump. Assist in measuring the height of the bar, ensuring that the bar is check measured in at least three (3) places, with the bar supports at each side adjusted accordingly.

Ensure that the bar straps are wrapped around the bar and under the bar support. This will allow the bar to drop down along side the jump supports and not onto the jump bags with athlete. This will ensure that the athlete is not injured should he/she not be successful at the jump.


RECORDER: The recorders enter ALL performance of each successful jump, a foul (F) for an unsuccessful jump, or pass (P). After each jump, the distance is measured and recorded.  After the athlete has jumped three (3) times, the recorder writes down the athlete's best performance.

It is important that the athlete's best performance is entered in the `BEST' Jump column.

RAKER: Ensures that the sand surface in and around the area where the athletes are most likely to land in the jump pit. The surface has to be flat, without going to extremes, but the surface disturbance from any previous athlete's mark has to be thoroughly erased.

MARKER: Places the marking rod (which is attached to the front of the measuring tape) into the sand at the edge of the disturbance closest to the jump board/mat.

MEASURER: The measurer then reads the performance from the tape and informs the recorder. The measurer also acts as the jump judge, to ensure that the jump is legitimate. For those athletes using the one (1) metre/half metre sand mats the measurement is made from the surface disturbance directly to the front imprint on the mat (usually covered with sand). Should the athlete not jump from the mat, but jumps before the mat, the measurement is taken perpendicular to the front edge of the mat closest to the pit. For those athletes using a board/white line the measurement is taken from the surface disturbance perpendicular to the board/white line.

Any part of the jumperís foot that starts over the leading edge of the board/white line/mat is considered a foul jump.

DO NOT CALL `FOUL' while the athlete is performing his/her jump. This will distract the athlete and may cause injury if the jumper is startled and lands incorrectly.

DISCUS/SHOT PUT: For the safety of the Parent Helper, it is directed that the Helper stand outside of the discus cage. Failure to comply could result in denial of liability should an accident occur. The Helper is to ensure that ALL persons in the vicinity of the discus/shot put or javelin are clear of any danger of being hit.

The shot put Helper ensures that the thrower does not remove the shotput away from the neck/jaw region before the throw.

For discus and shot put, the Helper ensures that the athlete does not step over the front of the circle following the throw/put, but enters and exits from the back of the circle.

The Helper measures, interprets and advises the performance to the recorder. A Committee Member is required to confirm a record performance.

MARKER: The marker places a marker peg at the point where the discus/shot put lands. The athlete performs three (3) throws/puts and then the `BEST' performance is measured. Should two (2) or more marks look equal then ALL performances are measured. The marker places the measuring rod (which is attached to the leading end of the tape measure) at the peg mark and the judge then reads the performance at the edge of the ring in a straight line from the performance point to the centre of the circle.

RECORDER: The recorder enters the `BEST' performance on the result sheet.

RETRIEVER: The retriever ensures that the discus/shot put is safely returned the circle area for the next athlete.

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