Softball's Umpire Area

How to become a WBSC Softball Certified Umpire

Most umpires want to know how they can be selected to officiate at a world championship, regional games or even the Olympics. The following will provide information on obtaining certifications as a WBSC-SD umpire.

An individual who is interested in umpiring should contact their WBSC-SD affiliated National Softball Federation to become a registered official with the National Softball Federation (NSF). All NSFs have umpire training available. There are rules clinics, mechanic schools and advanced camps at the local, national or regional levels. Umpires who take the time to advance their knowledge and to display the skills that they have learned in front of evaluators including local or national umpire-in-chiefs (UICs) will be rewarded by receiving local and national assignments as they advance towards the highest level of umpiring given by their NSF.

Qualifying to attend a certification seminar

In order to attend a WBSC-SD Umpire Certification Seminar, an applicant umpire must meet the following criteria:

  • The applicant must be currently registered, and for the immediate preceding seven (7) years, the applicant MUST have been a registered umpire, active, and in good standing with their National Federation

  • The applicant must be ranked at the highest umpire level within their National Federation when applying.

  • An applicant may be certified in more than one (1) category (fast, slow, or modified pitch), but must attend and pass an WBSC – SD Umpire Certification Seminar in each category for which they are applying.

  • The applicant must have the approval of their National Federation to attend the seminar. The applicant must be in good physical condition and able to perform the duties of an elite umpire at the highest level.

  • Each Applicant must prequalify for the WBSC-SD Umpire Certification Seminar. Pre-qualification is achieved by obtaining 90% correct answers on a written OPEN BOOK Rules Theory Examination. The Examination must be completed on line at the WBSC – SD UmpSchool, unless alternate arrangements are made.

  • Along with their application the applicant must pay the Registration fee of $100.00 USD and provide a digital head and shoulders photograph. Upon submission of the application, The applicant will be notified that he/she has been accepted as a candidate for the Certification Seminar. Location and Dates of Certification Seminars will be posted on the WBSC-SD  Website.

What to expect at a WBSC – SD certification seminar

At the Seminar which normally runs for 5 days, the candidate is observed in class room activities, on-field drills and actual games. The candidate must achieve a combined score of 90 on 5 measurements:

  • leadership – maximum 5 points;

  • plate mechanics – maximum 5 points;

  • case play situations– maximum 5 points;

  • mechanic play situation – maximum 5 points;

  • and on-field evaluation – maximum 80 points.

Candidates must also achieve the minimum standards on 4 physical fitness tests consisting of:

  • chair stand test – minimum 20 sit/stands in 30 seconds;

  • Wall sit test – minimum hold of position – 100 seconds;

  • 27 meter (87 feet) dash – minimum time of 5 seconds; and

  • to run a distance of 1,600 meters (1 mile) in 12 minutes or less.


  1. In order to attend a WBSC-SD Umpire Certification Seminar, candidates must complete an application form. Application forms may be obtained from the WBSC-SD office (1900 S. Park Road, Plant City, FL. 33563-8113. (Tel: 1-813-864-0100) E-mail: or through your National Federation, or on the WBC-SD  Website:

  2. All parts of Sections 1 and Section 2 must be completed. Parts marked ­ are required information.

  3. Applications must be personally signed by the applicant and one [1] Officer from the applicant’s National Federation, [e.g. the Umpire in Chief, President, Secretary General, Commissioner or designate person of the National Federation], verifying that the applicant has met the criteria set out in Paragraphs 2, 3 and 5 of Section A above.

  4. The application must be accompanied by a US$100.00 fee and a digital head and shoulder photograph send by e-mail to:

  5. Applications that are not completed correctly, or are submitted without the photo(s), fee, and required signatures, or do not meet the qualifications as outlined in Section A above, will be returned to the respective National Federation.


All expenses incurred by the applicant attending an WBSC – SD Umpire Seminar (i.e. all travel, housing, and meals) are to be paid by the applicant, or the applicant’s National Federation as agreed upon by the applicant and the applicant’s National Federation.


  • Applications will be received at the WBSC – SD Office throughout the year.

  • Notification of when and where the next WBSC – SD Certification Seminar will be held, closing dates etc., will be provided to the applicant and the National Federation in plenty of time so that, if appropriate, arrangements can be made to attend.

All applicants and their National Federations will be advised, in writing, of their acceptance to attend the seminar.