USA Gymnastics Rules and Policies

2015-2016 Rules and Policies: Behavior and Responsibilites pages 17-20

III. Professional Member Behavior Policy

A. Any falsification of official documentation (scores, athlete date of birth, athlete member number, etc.) will result
in the removal of the athlete from competition and may result in disciplinary action against the responsible Professional member.

B. At USA Gymnastics Sanctioned Events, unacceptable coach behavior is defined as:

1. Verbal, emotional, sexual, or physical abuse of a gymnast.
2. Abuse of alcohol or drugs. (Refer to meet director responsibilities for actions)
3. Inappropriate remarks or comments, harassment, and/or gestures directed toward any official or meet
personnel during the competition. No coach has the right to demand a last minute change in the course
of the meet or to jeopardize the athlete/competition in any way, unless there has been a violation of the
Rules and Policies.
4. Contact with other persons outside of the competitive floor area during the actual warm-up and
course of competition. (Exceptions: USA Gymnastics or club doctor, trainer, other credentialed personnel)
5. Derogatory remarks to the press in regards to USA Gymnastics, its designated representatives, meet
officials or personnel.
6. Violating any of the coaches’ or judges’ specific responsibilities as listed later in this chapter.

C. Unless otherwise specified, such above described behavior will be penalized as follows:

1. First Offense: Verbal warning will be issued by the Meet Referee/Technical Director and/or designated
representative of USA Gymnastics. The warning must be documented and recorded by the Meet Referee
on the sanction report form.
2. Second Offense: Withdrawal of floor credential, necessitating ejection from the competitive floor area (or
possibly the entire competitive arena).

IV. Coaches' Specific Responsibilities

All Coaches are obligated to:
A. Maintain a USA Gymnastics Professional or Jr. Professional (if 16-17 years old) membership. Safety Certification
is a prerequisite for Professional and Jr. Professional memberships. U100: Fundamentals of Gymnastics
"Instructor Certification" is also required for anyone that intends to coach at a sanctioned competition.
A Criminal Background Check. is required of all Professional members. Jr. Professional members are exempt from the
Criminal Background Check.

1. At sign-in at all USA Gymnastics-sanctioned events, all Professional and Jr. Professional
members must be prepared to produce their current Membership card listing valid dates for
membership, Safety Certification, U100 Certification and Criminal Background check certification
or an event-specific credential (indicating that the Meet Director checked their memberships and
pre-requisites prior to the competition). Members must also be prepared to show proof of valid
membership in the field of play (competition area) if so requested.
2. If upon renewing a membership, the member is unable to print a new Membership Card, a
receipt to confirm that their membership and pre-requisites are up-to-date may be printed in
lieu of the card. A temporary certificate for successfully completing the Safety/Risk
Management certification and/or U100 Certification may also be printed as proof of compliance.

B. Follow the USA Gymnastics Code of Ethics.

C. Function ONLY as a coach during a competition. They may not serve in a dual capacity (i.e.
Coach/Judge, Coach/Announcer, etc.).

D. Be professional
1. Display good sportsmanship.

2. Dress in attire reflecting the best image of gymnastics. At State meets and above, the coaches' dress code is as
follows:

a. Athletic shoes with rubberized soles. Athletic warm-up pants or "Docker-syle" pants (No jeans).
b. Athletic or tailored shorts that are of a reasonable length. No holes, tears or short shorts.
c. Collared shirts, business casual shirts or T-shirts with gym logo. (No spaghetti straps, low-cut tops
or midriff revealing shirts).
d. No hats or visors.

3. Be mentally and physically prepared and rested in order to provide the safest environment for the gymnast.

4. The use of cell phones (talking, texting, etc.) or any type of wireless communication device is prohibited while
on the field of play (competition area). Coaches are permitted to record their OWN gymnasts' exercise for
personal use but should not in any way interfere with the competition.

E. Attend all coaches' meetings and be familiar with the meet set-up and organization.

F. Be present at all warm-up and competition sessions. Check the time of floor exercise music on the official music
playback equipment prior to competition and report any problems to the Meet Referee.

1. Must provide Floor exercise music in digital format (MP3, computer, tablet, smart phone, etc.). CD
playback equipment is no longer provided by the Meet Director.
2. These electronic devices must have a display screen and must be on airplane mode, when applicable.

G. Be respectful of and responsible for his/her athletes at all times during the travel to and from the
competition, at the training prior to competition, during the off hours, and during the competition itself.

H. Follow all guidelines for the competition as stated in the USA Gymnastics Rules and Policies, including entry
regulations.

I. Continually update coaching knowledge and experience on a planned regular basis, by means of study, review
of films, attending workshops, and participating in clinics, etc.

J. Treat all competitions the same, regardless of the skill level.

K. Set an example for the athletes by displaying a positive attitude and exemplary conduct.

L. Show respect for all gymnasts, coaches, judges, and meet personnel.

M. Coach gymnasts from their own team only, unless another coach asks for assistance or a gymnast has no
coach available. It is inappropriate to conduct a coaching clinic during the competition.

N. Direct any inquiries regarding apparatus, judging or meet schedules through the Meet Referee or Meet Director.

1. Refrain from approaching a judge directly.
2. Instruct their gymnasts and parents to discuss any concerns they may have with the coach.

O. Inform the gymnasts and gymnasts' parents of all competitive requirements, as well as their rights and obligations.

P. Obtain an Accident Report Form signed by the Meet Director and/or medical personnel in the case of any injury to a
gymnast for whom they are responsible. Accident Report forms will be included in the Sanction packet sent to the
Meet Director, who will duplicate and provide copies for the medical personnel. The coach or parent of the injured
athlete must be sure to secure this form, completed by the medical personnel and signed by the Meet Director,
prior to leaving the competition.

Q. Show respect for the United States flag and the National Anthem. Remember that we teach young people by example.

R. At a USA Gymnastics sanctioned event, if any Professional Member of USA Gymnastics witnesses action by a coach and
believes that the safety of an athlete is in question (for example: risk of catastrophic injury, concussion, etc.), that
Professional Member should report the matter to the Meet Director.

1. The Jury of Appeals will then promptly review and resolve any issue related to the matter by the following process:
a. Discussion
b. Decision – by a majority vote
2. A decision by the Jury of Appeals may include a warning to the coach for improper behavior or such other action as
the Jury of Appeals determines to be warranted, and may include action to ensure the safety of the athlete.
A decision of the Jury of Appeals is final and binding, and is not subject to appeal.
3. The Jury of Appeals is comprised of the following individuals:
a. Meet Director (unless affiliated with the inquiry, for example, if question relates to his/her gymnast)
b. Meet Referee (President of the Jury)
c. Chief Judge of the Event in question
d. If available, one USA Gymnastics representative (Elected State or higher Committee member, or Regional
or National Officer)
4. However, the Jury of Appeals for Regional and higher-level competitions is comprised of the following individuals:
a. Meet Director (unless affiliated with the inquiry)
b. Meet Referee (President of the Jury)
c. USA Gymnastics elected Administrative Officers

V. Judges' Specific Responsibilities (see also Chapter 5: Meet Officials)

All Judges are obligated to:
A. Maintain a USA Gymnastics Professional (or Jr. Professional if 16-17 years old) Membership. A Criminal
Background Check and Safety Certification are pre-requisites of Professional Membership; Jr. Professional
members are exempt from the Criminal Background check.

1. At sign-in at all USA Gymnastics-sanctioned events, all Professional and Jr. Professional members must
be prepared to produce their current Membership card listing-valid dates for membership; Safety
Certification and the Criminal Background check or an event-specific credential (indicating that the
Meet Director checked their memberships and pre-requisites prior to the competition). Members must
also be prepared to show proof of valid membership in the field of play (competition area) if so
requested.
2. If upon renewing a membership, the member is unable to print a new Membership Card, a receipt to
confirm that their membership and pre-requisites are up-to-date may be printed in lieu of the card. A
temporary certificate for successfully completing the Safety/Risk Management certification may also be
printed as proof of compliance.

B. Maintain USA Gymnastics Judges' Accreditation ratings for the appropriate level of competition and be current
with Continuing Professional Education (CPE) requirements.

C. Follow the USA Gymnastics Code of Ethics.

D. Be professional.

1. Dress appropriately, regardless of the level of competition, in the required uniform (Navy skirt/pants and
jacket, white blouse/shirt). (Exception: theme invitationals)
2. Be mentally and physically prepared and rested in order to evaluate all gymnasts as accurately as possible.
3. Be quick, cooperative and efficient in resolving differences during a conference.
4. Remain at their event station until the entire competition is completed.
5 . The use of cell phones (talking, texting, etc.) or any type of wireless communication devise is prohibited
while on the field of play (competition area). Judges may use electronic tablets for gymnastics
purposes only on the Field of Play.

E. Serve only in the capacity of an official during warm-ups and competition. They may not act in a dual
capacity (i.e., coach/judge, parenting/judge, Meet Director/judge, Announcer/Judge, etc.).

F. Be familiar with the meet setup and organization. No judge has the right to demand a last minute change in the
course of the meet or to jeopardize the athlete/competition in any way unless there has been a violation of the
Rules and Policies.

G. Fulfill all assignments according to the contractual agreement. Only dire circumstances should prohibit a judge
from fulfilling an assignment. If a judge must cancel an assignment, she/he must notify the appropriate officials
at the earliest possible moment.

H. Refrain from conversation with other judges and coaches during the competition. In addition, the judges'
responsibility does not involve the conduct of the gymnast(s) during warm-up or training. Any conversation or
comments with the athlete should be made only if requested by the coach or athlete.

I. Show respect for all gymnasts, coaches, judges, meet personnel and volunteers.

J. Be confidential about meet matters, their own scores or other judges' scores or opinions.

K. Update judging knowledge and experience on a planned, regular basis, which includes studying, practice
judging with videos or live athletes, attending courses, and judging as much as possible.

L. Treat all competitions the same, regardless of skill level.

M. Avoid judging a meet in which any personal bias (positive or negative) towards any competing team and/or
individual athlete would affect their ability to judge objectively.

N. Set a good example for the athletes by displaying a positive attitude and exemplary conduct.

O. Show respect for the United States flag and the National Anthem. Remember we teach by example.

P. Be considerate of the Meet Director's equipment by refraining from wearing footwear that could be damaging to the
mats and/or floor.

Q. Refrain from soliciting invitations to judge specific competitions by making direct contact with the Meet Director.