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ru-campbell
19-04-15, 17:04
Hi everyone,

I'm new to this site, but now that my season is over I was wondering what are the best methods for improving my refereeing (other than matches!) over the off-season. Iím only 17 and qualified as a referee last October in Scotland and this season mainly did u14 games, although also had to stand in to referee a couple of u19 7s matches after an injury!
I still have a lot to learn, however, as a referee which is why Iím looking for some tips to help me come back next season well prepared.
Thanks,
Ruairidh

matty1194
19-04-15, 17:04
Ruairidh,

Welcome to the site, Im not offering you any tips just now just giving you a heads up, everyone in the refereeing world has a different approach on the way things should and shouldnt be done throughout a game similar to the various coaches and advisors that you have had access to this season.

Think about how long it takes to get agreement at a Society meeting and you will understand what Im on about, this is at times like a "virtual Society meeting"

On this site you will see all of that, get involved with the various posters and threads, every one has a different approach, some people are very blinkered, others offer a more open point of view, you may also fall foul of the "grammar police" they roam the threads quite regularly and forget at times that not all members have English as a first language.

But welcome, you still living in Edinburgh??

Rushforth
19-04-15, 18:04
I would recommend getting involved in Sevens tournaments for the next month or two. Same laws, different skills needed (or rather different levels of skills). Even if you only do U15 7s this coming month, you will learn about positioning in a way useful to XVs too.

Congratulations on starting to referee so young; I hope you can continue to play yourself for many more seasons.

As to the genuine off-season, there will still be matches to watch, laws to (re)learn, and fitness to maintain. At your age there will be muscles - both mental and physical - that still need to be developed. In the former sense I primarily mean coordination, but also metaphorically in the sense of being strong when you are out there on your own. In the latter sense, work out an exercise regimen for yourself which addresses what you feel to be your weaker points, but maintain the others of course.

Above all, welcome :)

JJ10
19-04-15, 19:04
I've found watching rugby (especially as a neutral, you can cheer for the referee rather than the teams!) a great way to keep my head in the game over the summer. The summer internationals/southern hemisphere game is a good watch.

Download the laws book and read the bits you don't know when you can. DON'T try to learn it word for word - refereeing is about empathy and application, not quoting the laws by number - but find the bits you need to get right, and the odd calls you havent had to make yet.

Sevens as mentioned above is a good way to keep fit and keep your head in rugby. Different skill to refereeing 15s though.

I plan to work hard this summer on fitness... :swet::Nerv:...... It will make life easier come the new season, especially as you work up the age groups. Injury prevention and flexibility is also important.

Welcome to the site. It is a great resource to trawl though - ask questions and get involved!

WombleRef
19-04-15, 19:04
Hi everyone,

I'm new to this site, but now that my season is over I was wondering what are the best methods for improving my refereeing (other than matches!) over the off-season. I’m only 17 and qualified as a referee last October in Scotland and this season mainly did u14 games, although also had to stand in to referee a couple of u19 7s matches after an injury!
I still have a lot to learn, however, as a referee which is why I’m looking for some tips to help me come back next season well prepared.
Thanks,
Ruairidh


Hi,

Welcome to the site - if I was going to give you one tip for the summer. Go play rugby league. It's actually surprisingly good fitness for refereeing (who thought incessantly running forwards and backwards 10 meters would help with my fitness) and although in my case it hasn't followed with weight loss - damn being in a University side and drinking alot - I feel like I am capable of keeping up with a game over the 80 minutes alot better than before.

Dickie E
19-04-15, 23:04
Remember to to recognise the importance of down time. Youthful enthusiasm at 17 can evolve into "I'm sick of this" at 25.

Dixie
20-04-15, 10:04
Hi Ruairidh. As a senior officer in the grammar police, I assure we only correct native speakers - the non-natives are generally too familiar with our grammar to commit howlers. As a Scot, you qualify as a native speaker - but with a Gaelic spelling to your name, we'll give you the benefit of the doubt and be gentle with you!

New referees generally struggle, in my experience, with four things:

a) processing what they see quickly enough to react by blowing (or not blowing) the whistle
b) positioning at breakdowns or set pieces to enable them to get to the next breakdown in time to see the first offence
c) fitness
d) communication

Of these, only d) is probably not something you can work on in the off-season. I would suggest the following:

a) the primary problem is the tackle, where it becomes a ruck. Here, you need to visualise what you expect to see at each point. At what point does Law 15 give way to law 16? And what are the precise requirements of each of those laws?

b) If you played, would you be a forward or a back? Positioning is different for a nippy winger-type than for a heavily-muscled (or just heavy!) front-row type. The slower or less fit referee needs to anticipate where the next breakdown will occur, and give himself a head start on getting there. The trouble is, he's then in the way of the pass between #9 and #10, or interfering with the defensive line. That's a tough trick to manage, and requires experience. The only short-cut is to seek advice from other experienced refs. Feel free to post here. The whippet-type ref also needs to anticipate where the next breakdown will occur, but he has the luxury of being able to position himself on the far side of the ruck, knowing he'll be able to chase around and still arrive early at the breakdown.

c) Consider refereeing touch rugby, which is fantastic aerobic activity and is remunerated. Otherwise, just avoid watching the alleged sport of cricket - or (come to think of it) any other summer sport. Stay active, work hard on your fitness. Some refs ref to get fit, and they rarely get anywhere. The refs who get fit to ref are the ones that progress.

d) Don't be tempted to watch replays of Scotland getting stuffed to see how the elite boys deal with communication. They have ARs, TMOs, big screens and pro players to assist them. Consequently, they communicate very differently than the grass roots ref. I'd leave this for next season, and ask to be assessed as early as possible so you can get tips from your assessor.

Have fun with the reffing, but Dickie E's advice is also sound - take a break. Do follow this site, and do post questions regarding in-goal, which catches out almost every new ref.

FlipFlop
20-04-15, 11:04
My advice - referee, referee, referee. And do some fitness.

Referee any form of rugby you can. (7s, touch, league, training sessions)
If possible - tournaments are great (7s, or 10s) - as you can get feedback, and watch others.

Get Referee fit - so sprint training. Join a local athletics club, and focus on sprinting.

Finally - watch other refs. Talk to them, ask them questions, find out why they do things, why not other things, what will work for you, what will not....

Dickie E
20-04-15, 14:04
get a tourist visa to Oz & NZ - our season is just beginning :pepper:

Fatboy_Ginge
26-04-15, 19:04
get a tourist visa to Oz & NZ - our season is just beginning :pepper:

Yep... then when you come back you can be shown where they're going wrong (especially at the scrum) :eng::tongue::tongue::tongue:

ru-campbell
28-04-15, 12:04
Thanks for all the advice - I'm fine when looking at fitness because I am now in the athletics season so middle distance I keeping me active enough!

Probably not able to do much travelling so I think I will give watching games in the eye of the referee a shot. I do it occasionally but never really manage to focus on the referee for the whole game as my playing instincts normally kick in (by the way I'm playing school 4th XV rugby, hence why I am also giving refereeing a go).

Dan_A
28-04-15, 12:04
If you are still at school, I wonder if your teachers would support you doing some refereeing in preseason training (or at least assistant refereeing) for younger age groups in your school? Maybe just in their practice sessions and closely supervised to begin with?

Do you have a local rugby league club? Again that would help give you some more experience of being the man in the middle.

Edited as I didn't read the OP properly!

Browner
28-04-15, 13:04
17, middle distance runner , 4th xv ability/ambition, keen to learn, sounds like many of the ingredients to go far as a referee.

Until the talent ID people come calling , you society will nurture you

A close season reviewing SARefs videos and decisions wouldn't hurt ( albeit they aren't always 100% accurate).

ChrisR
28-04-15, 14:04
Read the laws. They will tell you what a player must not do, what he must do and what he may do. By omission you will also see other possibilities.

But don't just read them. Imagine the context of the law. Try to determine its purpose and how it shapes the game. Imagine the scenario and what actions can happen, what the likely next phase is and where you'll be to best observe as you stay out of the way.

When you have questions try to find the answers in the Laws. If you can't find the answer you need then post it on this board. Don't get put off when someone points out that it is clearly stated in the book.

Lastly, when communicating to players (and coaches) be confident, clear and concise.

And, yes, don't be a condescending prick.

Lee Lifeson-Peart
28-04-15, 15:04
Welcome Ruairidh.

Enjoy your refereeing.

OB..
28-04-15, 15:04
You certainly need to be familiar with the laws, but just reading them is boring. As Marauder says, you need a context, so watch a game/recording with a notepad and try to assess the referee. Jot down points about decisions, advantage etc and then check the relevant laws in that context. Also note the referee's positioning (slightly different when you have ARs of course) and how he talks to the players. If you turn the sound off, his signals should tell you what decisions he is making (and you need to know the signals).