A week in the life of an AFL Umpire

Umpires at the elite level are very busy people. Most have full-time jobs or study full-time outside of their football lives.
 
So what exactly does a typical week entail for those at the top? AFL field umpire Brett Rosebury talks us through his week in the lead up to round four.
 
Monday 7th April
 
Outside of umpiring Iím an accountant and work full-time for Ticketmaster. I work out of their national office and look after the finances for the Australian and New Zealand branches of the company.
 
Monday is always a massive day at work because all the reports come in from our events held on the weekend (shows, sport events and concerts etc). Because of this I get into work at 8.30 am.
 
As Iím a member of the AFL umpiresí leadership group, I touch base with all the interstate field umpires and seek any feedback, comments or decisions they would like to see as part of the coaching we will receive during the week.
 
We also receive our umpiring appointments from the Umpiring Department via e-mail today. Iíve been appointed to the Geelong vs. St Kilda match at the Telstra Dome on Saturday.
 
During my lunch break I go and get a massage to get rid of any general soreness I may have for the previous weekendís match. The massage usually lasts for around 30 minutes.
 
I leave work at 4.30pm and head to training. We train at Monash University but tonight weíre going to a different venue for a bit of variation.
 
Training starts at 5.30pm with a meeting between the field umpires. We debrief as a group and raise any issues or interesting topics from the weekend as well as rate our performances in key areas that we value as field umpires.
 
The coaching staff join in during the last part of our meeting which allows the group to summarise what we have discussed and highlight any vision we would like to view during our main coaching session on Wednesday night. We then head out onto the training track for our main fitness session which usually runs between 6-8pm.
 
After training Matt Stevic and I had dinner together in St Kilda before I headed home and washed my training gear so that it would be ready for training on Wednesday night.
 
Tuesday 8th April
 
I arrive at work by 8.30am. A busy day lies ahead due to the comedy festival with 2000 events on during the four weeks. As a result there is a lot of reporting required on the different acts taking place.
 
I again touch base with all the interstate field umpires via email giving them a summary of the points we discussed last night at training. At lunchtime I go for an easy 30 minute run around the tan track and along the Yarra River.
 
After work I attend a two hour university lecture and then go to the gym for an hour on the way home. At the gym I do strength and core activities and then some stretching. 
 
Once home I review feedback from my game on the weekend which is e-mailed to me by AFL Field Umpiresí coach Rowan Sawers. I have watched the replay of my game over the weekend but once I get my feedback I go back and cover off areas that Rowan has highlighted.
 
Wednesday 9th April
 
At work by 8am and pretty busy all day. Leave for training at 4.30pm and head out to Monash University.
 
Training starts at 5.30pm with our main coaching session. We cover off the points raised on Monday night as well as receiving additional coaching from Rowan Sawers and Peter Howe (AFL Field Umpiresí Assistant Coach).
 
We see vision of good decisions from the previous round and vision of areas on which we can improve.  The coaching session generally runs for about 35-45 minutes before we head out onto the training track.
 
We train after the coaching session until about 7.45pm. After we get off the track some of the guys like to get a massage while others prefer to do a little extra stretching or bouncing practice.
 
Following training a group of us head out for dinner which we do each Wednesday night after training.
 
Thursday 10th April
 
Get to work by 8.30am. I run to the Telstra Dome and back during lunch to get an easy 25 minutes run in.
 
As Iím part of the leadership group I meet with Channel 10 and the AFL regarding the Hall of Fame tribute match at the Telstra Dome. They are trailing some new technologies during the match so we did some filming and testing of the new camera equipment.
 
I leave work at 5.45pm and head home. Iím moving house next week so I do a bit of packing before getting an early night.
 
Friday 11th April
 
At work by 9am today. I work all day and then go to a work function held at the Essendon vs. Western Bulldogs match. I stay until three quarter time before going home to prepare to tomorrowís game.
 
Saturday 12th April
 
I get up at 9am and have breakfast before walking down to the shop to buy the newspapers. I stay at home and just relax by reading the newspapers until I get ready for my game at about 11.15am.
 
At about 11.45am I leave home and drive to the Telstra Dome to umpire St Kilda and Geelong. I arrive at the ground at 12.05pm.
 
I always arrive two hours before the game to allow plenty of time to prepare and go through my normal routine. We visit each club room at a nominated time before the match which is provided by the club. St Kilda are 70 minutes and Geelong are 60 minutes before the start of the game.
 
I get a massage from our trainers and then start my warm up before heading out onto the ground at 1.58pm.
 
The game finishes at about 4.50pm. Immediately after the match concludes we complete our post match paperwork including a report that was made on the day.
 
Following the paperwork we do some cool-down stretching and have something to eat. We get provided with some fruit, rolls and lollies.
 
We then jump into the ice baths and hot showers to enable a better recovery before leaving the ground at around 6pm.
 
I then headed off to dinner with my co-umpires Simon Meredith, Ray Chamberlain and also Luke Farmer (WA based field umpire) who umpired the North Melbourne vs. Melbourne match.
 
After dinner I head home and watch the second half of the Sydney and West Coast match before going to bed.
 
Sunday 13th April
 
In the morning I meet up with Luke Farmer and a running mate in Port Melbourne. We go for a slow 35 minute jog running from Port Melbourne to St Kilda and back. We then head into the bay for another recovery session and stay in the cold water for about 15 minutes.
 
After we finished we had breakfast and headed home. I did a bit more packing for most of the afternoon and then watched the first half of my game. I like to do my own post-game review before receiving feedback from my coaches during the week. I will watch the second half of my game early in the week.
 
I watch the last quarter of the Collingwood and Carlton match and then head out to attend a function held for Scott McLaren who umpired his 300th match on Friday night.
 
After the function I head home and get some rest before it all kicks off again tomorrow!

This article was originally written by Brett Rosebury for afl.com.au

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