Following the busy spring lacrosse season, summer time can serve as a welcome respite for many players, coaches, and officials. But for others, the summer brings opportunities to further expand on their craft.
Beginning early in June and continuing into July, USA Lacrosse is offering a number of on-field clinics for men’s and women’s officials in multiple locations around the country. The clinics are for both the experienced game official as well as those seeking to enter the profession.
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“You are coming to a clinic for the purpose of getting better, and that will certainly happen regardless of which event you attend,” said Marty Joyner, manager of men’s officials development at USA Lacrosse. “These clinics provide wonderful teaching opportunities.”
Joyner notes that most of the clinic trainers are experienced college level men’s and women’s officials.
There are currently six USA Lacrosse Level 3 clinics - designed mainly for experienced officials - on this year’s schedule. Level 3 clinics focus on learning and refining skills in three-person positioning and mechanics, as well as continued development in areas of communication, teamwork, and game management for a higher level game.
Level 3 clinics are viewed by many local associations as a needed perquisite in order to begin getting college game assignments.
“One of the biggest benefits of these clinics is the chance for attendees to get an outside perspective and feedback from someone other than a member of your local association,” Joyner said. “Evaluations during the spring season are just not as widely done any more, so these clinics are among the few opportunities officials have to get evaluated.”
On the women’s side, USA Lacrosse is partnering with the IWLCA for eight Level 1 clinics, designed to serve as entry-level training for new officials who are current and recent women’s lacrosse college players. Participants experience hands-on training activities as well as field training on live games. Upon completion of the clinic, along with the Rules and Penalties Online Course and annual exam and professional development course, the participants will be USA Lacrosse Certified Officials.
“These clinics are the first step in developing your skills as a girls' lacrosse official and will set you up for success if you choose to move up and work higher level games,” said Liz Brush, manager of women’s officials development at USA Lacrosse.
Joyner and Brush also emphasize one additional benefit of all the clinics, regardless of level.
“There’s great networking time available during these events so that officials can talk to others in their profession,” Joyner said. “You feel like you are a part of a true professional organization.”