Where have I been?

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JonT
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Where have I been?

Post by JonT » Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:49 am

Some of you will know I have been pretty absent from the forums/competitions/erg in general over the last few months.

Here's why - https://www.dropbox.com/sh/if9q7x5lv3l7 ... oln3a?dl=0

Loving every minute of it, but requires a different kind of focussed fitness training to allow me to keep up with play for 80 minutes.

Jon
52 years old, 5"10', clinging on to 75kg and frustratingly but understandably inconsistent
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Re: Where have I been?

Post by CamiCrew » Sun Dec 11, 2016 6:38 pm

WOW. That's really cool, Jon! Love the photos.

I don't know much about rugby, but I imagine being a ref is intense. And takes serious training. What drew you to it? How much of the year is the commitment?

And... will you have opportunities to referee at national and international levels?

Hopefully you'll have break time to get in a few rows. The erg is brutal, but maybe not so much compared to an angry rugby squad, all glaring at you :lol:

Glad you are enjoying new endeavors. Please do keep us in the loop!

-barbara

(p.s. apologies for mentions of the "e" word in the sanctuary :fsgrin: )
-barbara

F Hwt 52 yrs 5'10"

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JonT
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Re: Where have I been?

Post by JonT » Wed Dec 21, 2016 10:00 am

This has to be the slowest moving discussion in the history of the forum :lol:

Yes Barabara it is very intense. That's what attracted me to it really. You have 30 people (I referee men and women's games) all very psyched up, playing one of the most extreme contact sports in existence. My job is mainly to stop them seriously hurting each other. On top of that you have a very, very complex set of Laws applied to a very dynamic, fast-moving game. To top it all, you have to use a huge amount of judgement to keep the game flowing. Basically, at any one time there will be multiple infractions on the pitch. You have to make a very quick judgement about whether they are material or not and decide what to do about it. Of course all the players have their own opinion of who is doing what and what you should do about it. At the end of 80 minutes I am always emotionally, mentally and physically drained.

The fascinating thing about the situation is the respect for the referee from all involved. This is not soccer. Players never argUe back, or if they do they know there will be an immediate consequence and at that point there will be no further back-chat and the skipper will typically chastise the player involved. Every players calls you "sir" from the moment you get out of the car to the time they buy you a drink at the end of the match. Why? See above - there is no way to play the game without a referee, and you are very reliant on the ref having the skills to do a good job. If not, misery ensues.

In terms of a referee career. I'm 50! I'm realistic. Local club level only for me for the next 10 years max. This is gruelling and I'm sure my body will give up on me. You really have to be fit to keep up with the game and be in the right place at the right time.

Fitness training has been interesting. I'm a rower and a cyclist, not a runner, so this has been very alien to me. On top of that the running you do is very sporadic. You can be jogging for 2-3 minutes and then dashing 70m to follow a breakaway. The pattern then repeats for 80 minutes. So really a match is 6-8km of sprint intervals in 80 minutes. Ouch.

Rowing any cycling have their part to play and I'm looking forward to the Rugby Christmas break to get back on the erg.

Jon
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Paul Victory
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Re: Where have I been?

Post by Paul Victory » Wed Dec 21, 2016 1:13 pm

Sounds very challenging Jon. I really admire you for taking it on. I went to a school where they played rugby, so I've followed the sport for over 50 years. As you point out, one of the key differences between rugby and soccer is the way the players respect the referee and you've explained exactly why that has to be the case.

Keep up the good work!

Paul V
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Re: Where have I been?

Post by zootMutant » Thu Dec 22, 2016 2:47 am

JonT wrote:The fascinating thing about the situation is the respect for the referee from all involved. This is not soccer. Players never argue back, or if they do they know there will be an immediate consequence and at that point there will be no further back-chat and the skipper will typically chastise the player involved. Every players calls you "sir" from the moment you get out of the car to the time they buy you a drink at the end of the match. Why? See above - there is no way to play the game without a referee, and you are very reliant on the ref having the skills to do a good job. If not, misery ensues.
Wow. Hard to imagine. I'm suffering from culture shock!
JonT wrote:On top of that the running you do is very sporadic. You can be jogging for 2-3 minutes and then dashing 70m to follow a breakaway. The pattern then repeats for 80 minutes. So really a match is 6-8km of sprint intervals in 80 minutes. Ouch.
Ouch, indeed! =D>
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JonT
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Re: Where have I been?

Post by JonT » Thu Dec 22, 2016 9:37 am

"This is not soccer" is quite a famous phrase in rugby. Follow the link to see why:

https://youtu.be/5YUF9LSXAkY

I realised afterwards that I didn't explain why I set off on this mad exploit in the first place. Each year I choose a personal challenge. It has to be something that will be very hard and that I am not even slightly equipped to do. I started by cycling to Paris having never been on a bike since I was a child, I then put on a professionally produced one-man theatre show having never acted, then I decided to row 100km on the river Thames having never rowed anything other than in a park (that's how I ended up in the group), and then I decided to become a rugby ref having never played the game in my life.

This one is by far the toughest challenge. I have had amazing support, but I have nearly put away the whistle on a number of occasions. And this one is also more of a problem, because I will struggle to say "Right, that's done, on to the next".
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Re: Where have I been?

Post by Wolfmiester » Fri Dec 23, 2016 4:25 pm

Jon, you have my full admiration =D> =D>

Nigel Owens spoke at my clubs annual dinner this year, and he was absolutely brilliant. Had us all in tears of laughter right from the off.
Wolfie

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JonT
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Re: Where have I been?

Post by JonT » Fri Dec 23, 2016 4:38 pm

One of my favourite Nigel Owens moments is when Toby Flood gets clattered in a tackle and makes a song and dance of it. Nigel calls him over and says "The soccer stadium is 500m down the road. If you want to make a fuss get yourself down there". Priceless. :lol:
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Paul Victory
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Re: Where have I been?

Post by Paul Victory » Fri Dec 23, 2016 5:47 pm

I'm also a huge fan of Nigel Owens. Not only is he a great, no nonsense ref with a great sense of humour, but he also had the courage to 'come out' in a very macho, male dominated sport.
M 65 6'1" 124kg (May05), 92kg (Feb06), 122kg (Aug10), 95kg (Sep11), 117kg (Jun13), now 92kg
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