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Reading Material ... How is an Umpire Like a Boxer?

Review the following article prepared by our brother & sister sofball officials. Do they have ideas to help us improve our game? Review it and see ...

By Emily Alexander

There is a saying in boxing that:

“If you cheat on your roadwork when you are alone in the cold dark of the morning, it will show up in front of everyone under the bright lights of the ring.”

The same holds true for an umpire. If you umpire lazy in league and don’t hustle and work for your angles or call the obstruction or concentrate on the game or behave professionally then you are practicing bad habits and honing poor mechanics. When (if) you do get the ‘big game’ and everything is intense, you will have no foundation and only these weak skills to fall back on.

In every game you work you must concentrate on your job, work to get the best angle, know where your next play could be, apply all rules, act professionally and be aware of situations. This is how you develop and ingrain habits that will carry you through intense situations.

Pick-up games, league games, kid games; this is your roadwork. This is where you build a solid foundation that will support you and let you shine under the bright lights in the stadium. If you think you can let down, be lazy, just get by, goof off in your every day games and then change and do everything right in the ‘big game’; you are dead wrong!

Sure, you may fool most of the fans, some of the players and even a few of the coaches. But you won’t fool your partner or your promoter or your peers. What you practice every day is the umpire you are and it will speak for you loudly and clearly in the ‘big game’.

Besides, the better you umpire the more pleasure you derive from a game. All games are not great. All games do not keep your attention. All games are not exciting. But you can make them great, alert, exciting games by the way you umpire. When you walk off the field you can still have that good satisfying feeling of knowing you did your job well. This, after all, is the best and only true reward you get in umpiring!

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This article gives us some

This article gives us some very good advice, I am reminded of my HS football coach who would always tell us " you play the way you practice". My mind set this year for going into a game is always keep the game in the proper perspective and everything flows from there. Trying to stay one step ahead of the play will keep me in the proper position. This year I came up with a routine 1. hustle ==== 2. adjustment ===== 3. position ====== 4. call it. One other thing I try to think about, some instructor once told me " work every game as if your are being evaluated". These ideas I try to keep in mind while working a game.

Larry Loeffler

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