Spey Certification - Spey Pages
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post #1 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-14-2004, 06:54 PM Thread Starter
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Spey Certification

Now that the process for certification has begun. Who's going to become a certified spey instructor? It looks like the spey o'rama at Golden Gate Club will have Spey Certification available. Maybe a opprotunity to qualify in the northwest, like at the Sandy's spey clave, will be scheduled. Get ready, set, qualify.........
Klem

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post #2 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-16-2004, 05:33 PM
 
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Dear Group,

The Two – Handed Certified Instructor (THCI) Program is ready to begin. The result, among the group of 6 two handed casting experts on the committee, was a unanimous vote (6-0) to approve the test. The program logistics were approved by another unanimous vote. I think the test and the program are great and I am very proud of the work that the group did.

Testing
At the end of 2003 there were 3 practice tests given. Due to poor communications on my part it was thought that these tests would count. This was not the case. The confusion was due to my mistake and it has been resolved. There were no certifications in 2003.

The Test
The test is made up of three parts: a written test, oral test, and performance test. The written test is for those FFF members who have no certifications at all and will be starting with the two handed test. The oral test has 10 mandatory questions and numerous optional questions, if needed. The performance test is very thorough and covers 8 different casts. This test is long and entailed, thus you must pass each stage before you can move on to next. A copy of the performance test will be attached to this letter.

Who can take the Test?
Any FFF member is allowed to take this test. If one holds no certifications at all, then a casting/teaching workshop and a written test is required before proceeding. Certified Instructors (CI), Master Certified Instructors (MCI), and CBOGs will all start with the oral test and then the performance test.

Who can give the test?
Any Spey Committee Member or other CBOG who has passed the test is automatically approved to give the test.

Master Certified Casting Instructors (MCI) can become a tester if he or she has passed the test, been nominated, seconded, and then approved by Spey Committee Members.

All testing will be done with a witness.



Who gives the first test?

We are obviously caught in a catch 22. Someone has got to be the first to give the test; however, this person will not have taken the test. We have selected Simon Gawesworth as our official tester. Simon is highly recognized as an expert instructor and his reputation will stand up to the critics. He also travels to a lot of spey shows. He would be authorized to give the test. As soon as a certified tester is passed, then Simon would take the test from that person.

In conclusion
The last thing that I would like to say is thank you to the committee. This was a great group to work with and they all worked hard and contributed in many ways. Al Buhr, Simon Gawesworth, Dennis Grant, Mel Krieger, Denise Maxwell, and Tim Rajeff were the Spey casting experts that sat on the committee. Dana Sturn and Way Yin advised me on many aspects of Spey casting. If you have the occasion, please thank these people for their hard work. With that said, I am officially stepping down from the Spey Casting Committee. I have several business opportunities that need my full attention for a while.
Thank you for all of your support and help.

Sincerely,
Bill Gammel

Appendix – the following info can be emailed around to interested parties verbatim.

HOW DO YOU GET CERTIFIED?
In general, you must:
•be an FFF member( if not, Join FFF Now?),
•attend a casting/ teaching workshop and pass the written test or hold an FFF Instructor Certification or Masters Certification.
•pass both an oral and a performance test that demonstrate your teaching/casting abilities.
Here are the particular steps you need to take:
1. Contact the FFF Office in Bozeman, Montana, to find out about the next certification opportunity in your area (or check the list of places and dates). Because of high demand for the certification and the need for personalized testing, you must pre-register through the National Office by contacting Julie at (406) 585-7592 or by e-mail Casting Certification.
2. Pay a $100 fee to take the test and an additional $50 if you pass, payable to the FFF. VISA, MASTERCARD, DISCOVER, AMEX and personal checks are the preferred methods of payment. The annual renewal fee to remain certified is $25.00. These fees cover the expense of running the program.
3. Participate in the 4-5 hour certification process, which includes successfully completing:
•A fly casting/teaching workshop that constitutes the initial phase of the test (previous certifications count)
•A comprehensive written test on various aspects of casting and teaching, with true/false and multiple choice questions (previous written test count)
•An Oral test concerning various aspects of two handed casting.
•A Casting Performance Test
TWO HANDED CASTING INSTRUCTOR PERFORMANCE TEST
•Equipment: (must provide your own)
•Rod: 15' maximum in length and not greater than 10/11 weight
•Line:
1. floating line of casters choice no greater than 10/11
2. Floating / Sinking tip line (sink tip must be at least 15’ long and have a sink rate of type 6)
•Leader shall be longer than10’ less than 15’, with a yarn fly
Note: In all cases, candidate must demonstrate the good, relaxed form that would be expected in a certified instructor, and which would instill confidence in students. The tasks should be accomplished quickly, easily and concise. This is not a matter of taking many trials in order to accomplish the task once.


Two-Handed Casting Instructor
Performance Test

Testing Situation

The FFF Two-Handed Fly Casting Certification Test will be conducted on water. The rod will not exceed a maximum of 15 feet in length and the line weight will be no greater than a #10/11 weight. Two lines are required: 1. a floating line of the casters choice, 2. a floating /sinking line with a sink tip at least 15 feet in length and at least a type 6 sink rate. The leader will be no shorter than 10 feet and no longer than 15 feet for the floating line.

The candidate must perform all of the casts with ease and proficiency, acceptable to the tester. The tester has the option to allow up to three attempts for skills that he or she deems necessary. If the candidate gets 6 or more tasks in the demonstration test wrong, this is considered unacceptable and the candidate failed.
For clarification and consistency: casting distance is measured from the casters front foot to the fly.

Applicants must be a FFF member and at least attended a Certified Casting Instructor workshop and take the two-hand written test. This workshop may be taken prior to the test where provided or in advance from a FFF Master Casting Instructor.

The test may be done on still or moving water. In still water those tasks noted must be off-shoulder or opposite hand. In moving water those tasks noted must be cast from the bank noted. All other tasks may be caster choice of bank.


Overhead Cast (must be performed over water)

1.____ Demonstrate 3-4 false casts at 70’, with narrow loops forward and back.

2.____ Demonstrate 3-4 false casts at 70’, with an open loop forward and back. Explain and demonstrate the difference in casting open loop and tight loops.

3.____ Demonstrate 3-4 false casts at 70’, off-shoulder/or opposite hand.

4.____ Demonstrate a tailing loop on command. Explain how a tailing loop is formed.


5.____ Demonstrate a change of direction cast (30 degrees or greater).


6.____ Explain and demonstrate shooting line.

7.____ Demonstrate a cast of over 100’(shooting line allowed).

Roll Cast (may be preformed from left or right bank)

1.____ Demonstrate a 70, dead line roll cast.

2.____ Demonstrate a 70’ dead line roll cast over off-shoulder/or opposite hand.

Switch Cast also known as Forward Spey
The fly must not anchor behind the caster at the point of making the final forward delivery and the forward cast must unroll above the water. May be preformed from left or right bank.

1.____ Demonstrate 80’ casts, with narrow loops forward that unroll above the water and both a “D” and “V” loop in back and without shooting line.

2.____ Demonstrate 80’ casts, or off-shoulder /or opposite hand, with narrow loops forward that unroll above the water and both a “D” and “V” loop in back and without shooting line.

3.____ Explain and demonstrate poor timing on the forward cast illustrating too much anchor.

4.____ Explain and demonstrate the premature loss of the anchor during the cast.

5.____ Explain and demonstrate a slack anchor point with the line piled anchor.

6.____ Explain and demonstrate line control mends; mending upriver and down river.

7.____ Explain and demonstrate the relationship between length of line carried and casting stroke length.


Single Spey
The fly must not anchor behind the caster at the point of making the final forward delivery and the forward cast must unroll above the water. To be performed from left or right bank where noted.

1. Lf ____ Demonstrate a Single Spey at 80’without shooting line, with narrow loops and with a change of direction of 45 degrees. From the left bank.

2. Lf ____ Demonstrate a Single Spey with a change of direction of 45 degrees or more, shooting line to 100’. From the left bank.

3. Rt ____ Demonstrate a Single Spey at 80’ casts without shooting line, with narrow loops and with a change of direction of 45 degrees. From the right bank; or off-shoulder /or opposite hand.

4. Rt ____ Demonstrate a Single Spey with a change of direction of 45 degrees or more, shooting line to 100’. From the right bank; or off-shoulder /or opposite hand.

5. Lf/Rt ____ Demonstrate a Single Spey at 80’without shooting line and with a direction change of 90 degrees or more.


6. Lf/Rt ____ Explain and demonstrate the fly anchoring incorrectly, on the downstream side of the caster.

7. Lf/Rt ____ Explain and demonstrate an anchor point that is too far upstream of the caster.

Double Spey
The fly must not anchor behind the caster at the point of making the final forward delivery and the forward cast must unroll above the water. To be performed from left or right bank where noted.

1. Lf ____ Demonstrate a Double Spey at 80’ without shooting line, with narrow loops and with a change of direction of 90 degrees. From the left bank; or off-shoulder /or opposite hand.

2. Lf ____ Demonstrate a Double Spey with a change of direction of 90 degrees or more, shooting line to 100’. From the left bank; or off-shoulder /or opposite hand.

3. Rt ____ Demonstrate a Double Spey at 80’ without shooting line, with narrow loops and with a change of direction of 90 degrees. From the right bank.

4. Rt ____ Demonstrate a Double Spey with a change of direction of 90 degrees or more, shooting line to 100’. From the right bank.

5. Lf/Rt ____ Demonstrate a Double Spey at 80’ without shooting line with a direction change of 45 degrees or less.

6. Lf/Rt ____ Explain and demonstrate what happens when the anchor point is set too far downstream of the caster, well below the path of the forward cast.

7. Lf/Rt ____ Explain and demonstrate the fly anchoring incorrectly, on the upstream side of the caster.

8. Lf/Rt ____ Explain and demonstrate a slack anchor point with a bloody L.

9. Lf/Rt ____Explain and demonstrate the difference when casting with very little backspace (6’) behind the caster, and a lot of backspace behind(40’).

Snake Roll
The fly must not anchor behind the caster at the point of making the final forward delivery and the forward cast must unroll above the water. To be performed from left or right bank where noted.

1. Lf ____ Demonstrate a Snake Roll at 80’ without shooting line and with a change of direction of 90 degrees. From the left bank; or off-shoulder /or opposite hand.

2. Lf ____ Demonstrate a Snake Roll with a change of direction of 90 degrees shooting line to 100’. From the left bank; or off-shoulder /or opposite hand.

3. Rt ____ Demonstrate a Snake Roll at 80’ without shooting line and with a change of direction of 90 degrees. From the right bank.


4. Rt ____ Demonstrate a Snake Roll with a change of direction of 45 degrees or more, shooting line to 100’. From the right bank.

5. Lf/Rt ____ Demonstrate a cast with a direction change of 45 degrees or less.


6. Lf/Rt ____ Explain and demonstrate a poorly timed forward cast.

Snap T/C Spey
The fly must not anchor behind the caster at the point of making the final forward delivery and the forward cast must unroll above the water. To be performed from left or right bank where noted.

1. Lf ____ Demonstrate a Snap T at 80’ without shooting line and with a change of direction of 45 degrees. From the left bank.

2. Lf ____ Demonstrate a Snap T with a change of direction of 45 degrees or more, shooting line to 100’. From the left bank.

3. Rt ____ Demonstrate a Snap T at 80’ without shooting line and with a change of direction of 45 degrees. From the right bank; or off-shoulder /or opposite hand.

4. Rt ____ Demonstrate a Snap T with a change of direction of 45 degrees or more, shooting line to 100’. From the right bank; or off-shoulder /or opposite hand.

5. Lf/Rt ____ Demonstrate a Snap T with a direction change of 90 degrees or more.

6. Lf/Rt ____ Explain and demonstrate a poor snap so that the fly anchors too far downstream side of the caster.

7. Lf/Rt ____ Explain and demonstrate a poor snap so that the fly anchors too far upstream of the caster.

Teaching ability / fault correction:

The candidate will be presented with four of the following common casting errors and asked to correctly identify the problem and its source, then recommend a cure. Answers should be concise.

1. ___ Lower hand kicks out, causing rod tip to drop on backcast, resulting in too much line anchored to water. (The trunk)

2.____ Correct “hooking”, a forward casting motion is made across body resulting in wide, horizontally oriented forward loop.

3.____ Correct creep in forward cast.

4.____ Correct “rolling the shoulder”. The rod on the forward cast “rolls” forward by the upper body, shoulders and/or arms, causing a wide loop that unrolls along the water.

5.____ An inefficient back cast resulting in a soft “D” loop and anchor too far in front of the caster on the Switch cast.

6.____ Hooking the D loop behind the caster’s head or back on the double spey.

7.____ On the backstroke of a switch cast what problem results by a caster coming back with the rod in too vertical a plane. What would you recommend to change this?

Other (either bank)

1. Lf/Rt ____ Explain and demonstrate what is needed to get a sinking line (or sink tip) up to the surface in order to perform a successful spey cast.

2. Lf/Rt ____ Demonstrate a Single Spey, shooting line to 80’ with a sinking line.

3. Lf/Rt ____ Demonstrate a Double Spey, shooting line to 80’ with a sinking line.

4. Lf/Rt ____ Explain and demonstrate the Underhand cast.
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post #3 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-16-2004, 08:25 PM
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thanks for the note Bill!

looking forward to taking the test!



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post #4 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-17-2004, 03:16 AM
 
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Just what I need a bunch of people telling me whats good spey casting and whats not.. but only if I join their organization... hmmmm. What happened to this just being fishing????
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post #5 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-17-2004, 03:26 AM
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Roballen,

Don't forget the $100.00 and $50.00 fees to take the test and casting/teaching workshop to be deemed qualified to take the certification test along with the $25.00 annual fee to keep the certification (I mean $25.00 fee to cover annual cost of "administering" the spey certification program). Oh, and don't forget to keep your FFF membership current as well.
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post #6 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-17-2004, 09:38 AM
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Spey Certification

Hi
To the Two-hand casting Board and others that helped put this program together "Thank You". Many of us look forward to working through the program, and improving our casting and teaching ability.
Rick Whorwood
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post #7 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-17-2004, 07:21 PM
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Cool certification

Wow! What a test.

I know a lot of work went into designing the test by a lot of good folks.

While many (including myself) will never take the test, it is good to know that those who promote themselves as instructors will have the broad array of hard-earned skills that are covered in the test, and that to me is the whole point; there shouldn't be any other point. I don't think that it was ever intended to be a standard that all that follow the art of this style of casting must conform to or care to reach or feel are necessary, etc.

Now if it only included a test of how you actually locate, hook and land a steelhead:hehe: !

Ray
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post #8 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-18-2004, 01:03 AM
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A challenging and real world test.

Folks who prepare for this test will certainly improve their fishing skills.

It is heartening to see that a single spey requirement of a 90 degree change of direction is included. Failure to do so would have made this a casting pond test, not a spey fishing skills test.

Many thanks to Bill and the Committee for their effort.
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post #9 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-18-2004, 01:39 PM
 
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Kudos and sincere thanks to Bill Gammel for seeing a difficult and at times, extremely contentious project through to it's completion!

The casting certification arm of the FFF is only one facet of the organization, which is also dedicated towards conservation efforts, and education of fly fishers, especially children's and women's programs.

I used to think I knew a little about fly-casting and the teaching thereof, but exposure to real experts through the FFF has broadened my horizons, improved both my teaching and casting, and really improved my understanding of fly-casting mechanics. Plus, they are a great bunch of people.

The FFF, as a credible non-profit organization, has taken a lead here in the states in organizing and developing a standardized performance and teaching test for two-handed casting, following the general principles that have guided their successful basic and master's intructor certification programs.

I have had the opportunity on more than one occasion to take the full instructor examination, and although not a member of the committee that put the program together, was honored to participate in reviewing the materials and providing suggestions to the program, as was Dana.

There are those of us who feel that the distances required are on the short side, that the casting repertoire need not include overhead casting, that the costs of participating in the program are too high, etc. etc. etc. However, having had the pleasure of casting and fishing with those whose families have spey cast for over 200 years, I believe the emphases of this two-handed certification for instructors are bang on.

The test, although requiring the flawless execution of some very basic casts, is first and foremost a test of teaching ability, and thus the ability to communicate effectively with students through a variety of means. I have had the honor of running through the test as Simon Gawesworth took it in a "trial run", and I don't believe there will be anyone who will be able to perform and communicate the concepts in the test better than he. The test is also a telling indicator of our own casting and teaching weaknesses, and as such, is a great tool by which we can improve our own casting and instructional abilities.


Cheers,
Spey Bubba
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post #10 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-18-2004, 03:32 PM
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Thumbs up Well said Doctor Yin.

If I may:

"and education of fly fishers, especially children's and women's programs... "

This was a major factor in the choice of FFF as a recipent of funding from the last Charity Spey Casting Clinic.




Fred Evans - White City, Oregon
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post #11 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-18-2004, 04:24 PM
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Spey-bubba,

I have no problem with having a certification test for spey casting. I do have a problem with including overhead casting as part of the certification test. I, like you and most other spey casters, hardly ever overhead cast, so I question the value of having it as part of the test.

I also think that there should have been an absolute requirement for casting (single and double spey) with the caster's weak hand on top along with the reverse single-and double spey instead of leaving it up to the caster to decide whether he wants to use weak hand up or reverse casting.

I also agree with you that the fee is too high, especially since you must pay a yearly fee to continue having your certification.

I feel that there should have been a requirement for casting over 100 ft with the caster's dominant hand up for both single and double spey. As to whether the caster casts 80 ft without shooting line, I have mixed feelings since this excludes the possibility of the short-belly specialists from qualifying since he would have to shoot line to reach 80 ft.

Likewise, I feel that a cast of 100 ft with the sink tip should also have been included for both single and double spey.
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post #12 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-18-2004, 09:40 PM
 
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If i were designing a test it would look like this..

Instructor takes a rank beginner, someone who's never held a spey rod in his life or worse yet a guy who has been single handed casting for 30+ years and get them fishing effectively at 50 feet before the sun hits the water...
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post #13 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-19-2004, 01:23 AM
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Roballen,

Naw, that is too easy a test. And besides, the instructor then wouldn't have "bragging rights" about how great a spey caster he is. Then there is the problem of justifying the $100.00 fee for the test if real world criteria is used for an instructor.
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post #14 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-19-2004, 11:09 AM
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New terms

After looking at, poking at and trying to digest the test there seems to be some new terms that I don't understand. What is a Snap T/C Cast? New form of Snap Tip Cast, as in Breaking tip cast? How wide is a tight loop 2" or 3'? What do the abbreviations Lf, Rt, Lf/Rt mean in reference to casting when doing your demonstrations?

Leroy.......................
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post #15 of 44 (permalink) Old 02-19-2004, 12:56 PM
 
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Hello Gentlemen:

To Flytyer, Speyrod, and RobAllen2 - Certainly the test is not perfect. I personally feel that the distance requirements are too short and too easily acheived. I also have a problem with a 10% discount in distance for certain applicants. I further feel that the test is too lenient in that 6 casts can be blown, and one can still theoretically pass. HOWEVER,

A great deal of thought went into the test and accompanying oral questions which address the bulk of the issues you have raised. The test is primarily a test of teaching ability, and in teaching fly casting, the FFF does excel - in my opinion, easily on par with the APGAI in England. This is not a test that everyone is compelled to take. Although I am happy to have taken it, I am also extremely pleased with a certification for casting instruction for single hand as well as two hand casting from the House of HArdy in the UK!

To be a well-rounded instructor of two handed casting, one should be able to teach students in short and long-belly techniques without bias, be familiar with all the current and past schools of teaching though (not just regional biases), and be able to throw overhead as well. You may not do it, but it is useful, just like all the other tricks we use to fish. By far the best casters and instructors I have seen in two-hand/Spey are from Scotland and England. They all can cast and teach either hand, any style, long belly or short, overhead, single hand, or spey, fully sunk lines, floaters, tips. You name it. And they can CAST. Those that will be going to the Spey-O-Rama in SF will have the opportunity to see a couple of these gents: Ian Gordon and Andy Murray among them.

Cheers

Bubba
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