Parent Helpers

Parent Officials

At club level, “officiating” is in large part the responsibility of parent helpers.   Each age group (eg. “under 7 girls”) is accompanied by a group of 4 “Parent Officials” – an Age Manager + 3 Age Assistants – who lead their group through each event and supervise the performance of those events.  For Field Events, this includes checking events are performed “legally” and then measuring & recording results – such as the distance of a Discus throw.  Many parents find these roles attractive because they provide the opportunity to participate with their own child through all their events.

The roles of the parent officials for Field Events are generally as follows:

Age Manager/
Official 1
Official 2Official 3Official 4
Lead Group
Call Next Athlete
Read & Record Result
Judge Fouls
Pull Tape / Measure
Spike throws
Judge Javelin Landing
Set HJ bar in place
Retrieve Implement
Set HJ bar in place
Rake Pit / Spray water

For Track Events, officials 1 and 2 supervise the Start Line and officials 3 and 4 the Finish Line:

Age Manager/
Official 1
Official 2Officials 3 and 4
Lead Group
Keep Order at Start Line
Keep Order at Start Line
Assign Lanes to Runners
Finish Line - for Laned Races - Keep runners in "lane order" and guide them to Recorder's Table.
Finish Line - For Pack Races - Hand out Place Numbers as runners finish and guide to Table.

These roles are set out in more detail in the following sheet:  Parent Official Roles by Event.  Be sure to attend one of our Parent Workshops where you’ll receive practical guidance.

The following short videos explain the roles of the 4 Officials required to manage each event:

Discus & Shot PutJavelinLong JumpRecording

For more educational resources, see our Athletics Education page.


Age Managers

In addition to their role as event officials, Age Managers provide a number of key role for their group, including:

  • Collecting the Age Group folder;
  • Taking the role as the children arrive;
  • Allocating Age Assistant Roles;
  • Encouraging the children;
  • Returning results sheets to the Recorder

Here is a document from LANSW that provides a number of suggested tips for Age Managers:  Guide for Age Managers.


Other Helper Roles

While most help is needed in the “parent officials” role, there are also a number other roles that need parent involvement.  These include:    Cantee & BBQ, Track Starters, Track Recorders & Hurdle Helpers.