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Sunday, January 13, 2008

Referee clinic and other lessons

Completed the referee clinic and passed the test. So I guess that means I'm an officially certified ref at level 1, the lowest level. I wasn't quite sure of the levels and what they mean exactly. My brain was filled with rules and I couldn't fit much else in there.

The course was excellent. The instructor, Josh Tameifuna, was outstanding. The only problem is that after the class I feel less qualified then ever to actually referee a match. My brain still hurts from trying to remember everything. You think you know the game and have a good understanding of the rules, and suddenly you realize you know a lot less than you thought you did. Everybody in the class really knows their rugby, and now more than ever.

So now Hawaii has 16 certified refs, though some probably won't really do any reffing, for various reasons. But the people who have already been reffing will be better than ever, and now they'll be new refs. Excellent! Not only that, but we now have an official Referee Society or Committee, with elected officers. A President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer were elected by the newly certified referees. I'll report more on that as things develop. My thoughts are that the Hawaii State Rugby Union be the top level administrative body, with the Referee Committee falling under them for administrative purposes. Integration, integration, integration. We all have to act as one cohesive unit; the Union, the Youth Rugby, the Referees. Things look good so far. There are a lot of talented and dedicated people involved and working hard. Tuesday night is a Union meeting for all the adult teams.

One of the key concepts that Josh talked about all through the course was the management of the game as the referee. As the referee, you're the sole judge of the laws of the game. How you apply those laws during the game is how you manage the game. You want play to flow, but you also want to control the game. Sometimes you need to keep a tight grip on things, so instead of giving someone a warning, you immediately penalize them, or you're more forceful in telling the players what you want and what you expect. Sometimes you can give the teams more free reign, because things are going well, so you let play flow more freely and give lighter warnings.

Those same principles can, and should, be applied to your business or organization. Sometimes you need to exert more control, keep a closer eye on things and check up on certain things more often. Other times you want to just let thing flow along on their own to encourage free thinking among your employees and foster innovation.

Isn't it just amazing the business lessons you can learn from the rugby field?

Oh, they're still trying to recruit more women (adults) and ideally grow some more women's teams. So if you know any women who are interested, or just curious, about rugby, contact Mindi at

And, of course, Adopt-A-Rugger and Hug-A-Rugger.

1 comment:

Your Scrumhalf Connection said...

congrats on the certification! I love reffing!!!