So You Want to Be a Figure Skating Judge?
several ways an individual can become involved in the world of figure
skating and serve the skating community. One of the best volunteer
activities is judging; it is a wonderful way to impart skating knowledge
and help young skaters achieve their skating goals. It's also an
incredible learning experience and a great way to meet new people.
judging is a rewarding activity, it's also a big time commitment.
Judges spend countless hours dedicated to their craft - studying,
judging tests and competitions, and giving feedback to skaters. Because
it's a volunteer activity, be sure you are prepared to put in the time,
money and effort to be the best judge you can possibly be. If you do
that, you are sure to have many memorable experiences.
For those interested in becoming a judge, the first step is to review the Trial Judge Kit, which contains all the information and paperwork you'll need to start judging.
you can also find answers to some frequently asked questions (FAQs).
Most of this information is covered in the Trial Judge Kit, but if you
have a specific question you want answered, you might want to review the
FAQs below first.
Becoming a Judge Q&A
Q: How do I know if I would be a good figure skating judge?
There are certain fundamentals that individuals should possess if they
want to become qualified judges and have positive judging experiences.
These characteristics include:
Q: Are there any basic requirements before I get started?
- A sincere desire to be of service to the sport
- Ability to make an independent decision
- Proper temperament and ability to handle stress
- Knowledge of the sport
Yes, you must be at least 16 years old to be a trial judge (18 to be a
judge) and you must have a current U.S. Figure Skating membership.
Q: Do I have to be a really good skater to be a judge?
Technical knowledge of figure skating is essential, but each person
starts with a different degree of skating knowledge. While former
skaters usually have a broader base of technical knowledge when
beginning the trial judging process, ability as a skater is not in
itself the measure of judging ability. There are many good judges who
only skated recreationally - in the long run, temperament and
willingness to serve are of more importance. A limited skating
background should not discourage anyone interested in becoming a judge.
Individuals who are new to the sport must be willing to put in the hours
necessary to acquire technical knowledge, from studying texts and
attending judge's schools to skating themselves (preferably with quality
Q: Will I get paid for judging?
Judging is a volunteer activity. Official judges are reimbursed for
out-of-pocket expenses such as travel, room and meals at test sessions
and competitions, but they are not paid for their time. Trial judges
receive no financial assistance at all from U.S. Figure Skating. Q: I have heard the term "CEU." What are CEUs and what affect do they have on judging?
CEUs are continuing education units. U.S. judges are required to stay
active in the sport through a number of ways including trial judging,
judging, attending judges' schools or seminars and taking the judges'
exam. Judges earn CEUs for participating in these activities, and are
expected to earn a certain number of CEUs in a four-year period to
remain eligible to judge.
Q: What are the select, advanced, and accelerated programs?
The select, advanced, and accelerated programs are judging tracks
available to those who have achieved certain test and/or competition
achievements as skaters The specific criteria can be found in the
guidelines for appointment/promotion on the "Judges" web page.