How to Become a Soccer Referee
If you love soccer, you may be looking for a way to turn that love into a viable career path. However, it takes decades of practice and quite a bit of natural skill to play professional soccer. As unfortunate as it is, this is something that just isn't in the cards for most of us. That doesn't mean that you can't still make a career in soccer, though. Working as a referee is a great way to stay in touch with the sport, even if you aren't one of the best players in the world.
Get the Training You Need
To become a referee, you need to know the rules of the game like the back of your hand. Even if you have played soccer for years, there may still be some intricacies to the rules that you are unaware of. To ensure that you have a solid grasp on the finer points of the game and how to officiate in various scenarios, you'll need to take a training course. Each state has its own soccer referee association, so be sure to check with the regulatory body in your area to determine the specific requirements.
There are several different grades of referee certifications, depending on the level of play you wish to officiate. Some courses are geared towards youth soccer, while others are designed for those who wish to referee adult games. Furthermore, there are distinctions between recreational and competitive play. Keep in mind that the demands on the referees are higher at the more competitive levels. If you are new to refereeing, you'll likely want to start with something a bit more casual. You can always move up to the higher levels later on as your skills as a referee improve.
Stay Up to Date
Each year, the Laws of the Game can change slightly to accommodate new trends in the world of soccer. To be an effective referee, you'll need to stay on top of these changes and be able to explain them in detail to players, coaches or parents who may not be as familiar with the rules, leading them to question your judgment. In addition to the Laws of the Game, you may also need to stay abreast of any changes to the specific guidelines for the league you are working for. Although the overall game is the same across most of the world, each locality may have minor differences that you will need to be aware of to referee effectively.
Don't Forget to Have Fun!
Even though you'll be in charge of enforcing the rules, it is important to remember that soccer is a game and is meant to be fun. Take a break from refereeing from time to time to remind yourself how much fun it is to play. You can get everything you need for a quick pick-up game with your friends at Fold-A-Goal. We have a wide range of soccer equipment for you to choose from, so browse through our selection today.