The inaugural Victorian Country Football League Umpiring School Holiday Program has recently been completed providing 20 umpires between 14 and 18 years of age from across all parts of country Victoria and South East South Australia with an experience that is sure to fast track their umpiring careers and develop them as quality people for life outside of football.
This three day program included a life skills session with former North Melbourne forward Nathan Thompson, discipline specific training sessions with AFL umpires Michael Jennings, Tim Morrison and Peter Nastasi.
Instruction on diet and nutrition for umpiring from AFL Boundary umpire and dietician Rob Haala, discussion around team building with AFL Field Umpire Stewart Wenn and developing fitness for umpiring with former VFL Umpire conditioning coach Nathan Bonney.
WorkSafe VCFL Umpire Development Managers Rod Threlfall and Russell O’Toole and former AFL Grand Final Goal Umpire Colin Hood managed the program over the three days providing a wide range of additional activities.
Each of the participants was able to build upon their understanding of laws of the game and the application of them into a match environment in extra coaching sessions.
All the young umpires and their families have made a significant commitment to their umpiring career through contributing to be part of this program which was then further subsidised through the WorkSafe VCFL.
All are members of the V/Line Umpire Academy program, which is conducted through the WorkSafe VCFL.
They have been able to use this Umpiring Holiday Program to enhance their understanding of their sport and importantly assist them to become better umpires within their local leagues and be better prepared for participation in development opportunities in 2013.