Get involved and call the shots with the best seat in the house!

Every surf sports competition needs a dedicated and well-trained team of officials. Much like any sport, umpire or referee, the role of a sport official is to act as an impartial and balanced judge across all competition and fulfil obligations with accuracy, consistency, objectivity and high sense of integrity.

The official’s framework has been set up to allow members to get involved at a base level very easily as well as providing a pathway for members who are interested in being an official at a senior level.

The framework includes:

  • Core Official – Provides members with an introduction into officiating at a Surf Sports event. Core officials will be taught the core elements of the Surf Sport environment and how this relates to officiating in junior surf sport
  • Technical Official – Provides members with a higher level of understanding in the Surf Sports environment and allows them to focus on key areas that may be of interest to them.
  • Senior Official – This is an opportunity for members that have completed their Technical Officials and start to focus on fulfilling senior positions at events that have a higher responsibility and requires members to have gained more experience in the area of officiating.


Core Officials

Officials working with entry level participants in a club surf sport environment (recreationally or competitively). Participants will generally be non-bronze proficient. Core Officials need to understand the core elements of the Surf Sport environment and how this relates to officiating in junior surf sport (beach, board and swim) environments.

This course provides a basic understanding of the key events conducted for junior level competitions. Core Officials are permitted to Officiate at any carnivals and competitions including State Championships where up to and including under 14 years age categories are conducted. There are four duties that they can carry out: Marshall, Recording, Judge, Timekeeping Judge. The Core Official is an entry point into the national officiating pathway.

Core officials will be supervised at competitions by a competent Technical (or above) accredited official.


To become a Core Official, you must be:

  • Minimum of 16 years of age
  • SLSA Member
  • The holder of a valid blue card


Technical Officials

The Technical Official course is aimed to provide an intermediate training program for experienced surf life saving members. Members could have gained experience through officiating as a Core Official or they could be an ex-competitor who has good knowledge of Surf Sports. The Technical Officials course enables them to further their career path in senior surf sports officiating positions.

Officials who choose to fulfil specific officiating role/s and who work with participants (non-bronze proficient, Surf Rescue Certificate qualified or bronze proficient) who are actively competing in a club / branch / state surf sport competition environment. Officiating roles may include:

  • Marshall / Check-Marshall
  • Starter / Check-starter
  • Recorder
  • Timekeeper
  • Finish Judge


To become a Technical Official, you must be:

  • Minimum of 16 years of age
  • SLSA Member
  • The holder of a valid blue card

Senior Officials

The Senior Officials course is the final step in the National Officials pathway and is designed for experience officials who have completed their Technical Officials accreditation and have gained experienced in numerous roles at various levels of competition.

The Senior Official will fulfil the specific senior roles at a carnival including Referee, Deputy Referee, Area Referee, Sectional Referee and Chief Judge, all of which have major roles and responsibilities in relation to the conduct of the overall carnival but also the running of the numerous events ensuring all rules and regulations are abided by.

The Senior Official is also a mentor to other Core and Technical officials and can facilitate training workshops in their nominated roles.


To become a Senior Official, you must be:

  • Minimum of 18 years of age
  • SLSA Member
  • The holder of a valid blue card
  • Technical Official Accreditation

Already a member? Login to the Members Portal

Other Ways To Get Involved


If you’re thinking of introducing your child to lifesaving, then Junior Activities (Nippers) is for you.


Do you fancy a front row seat at a diverse range of events? Use your passion for saving lives to raise awareness and funds for Surf Life Saving Queensland!

Work With Us

SLSQ offers a large number of volunteering, internship and work experience options for those looking to gain experience and make a contribution.

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