National Physical Trainer and former Nevis Goal keeper Masefield Nisbett, recently returned to Nevis after attending a FIFA training workshop in Antigua from the 10th to 14th March.
Nisbett noted that the course was a part of the ongoing training efforts of the world Football Organization to ensure that its officials stay up to date with the rules and variances of the game and also to ensure that the officials maintain top fitness levels.
The course was divided into three aspects:
· The Assessors
· The Fitness Instructors
· The Technical instructors
There were persons from Curacao, Anguilla, Antigua, St.Kitts, Nevis and other islands across the Caribbean.
In his section alone (The Fitness Instructors category), there were 13 participants.
Nisbett observed that it is a standardized training session which would ensure a uniformity of ideas all around the world, In other words, FIFA Instructors worldwide receive the very same training and any of the officials could officiate in any country served by FIFA—be it Germany, The USA, and England etc.
His main area as a Fitness Instructor is to develop a fitness maintenance program for the Referees in his designated area—in this case, St.Kitts and Nevis.
There is also a standardized fitness test which the instructors first had to complete and then in turn be able to ensure that the Referees are regularly tested.
He noted that accuracy is critical and stated that while he was marking out his area for the fitness test, he was off by just one meter but that was not good enough as FIFA requires precision and accuracy. The Instructors were taught the importance of being accurate.
There was a theoretical part of the course and a practical side as well.
Nisbett further revealed that the FIFA Referees are all given a monitor (a specially designed watch) which when placed on the hand serves to immediately update the Fitness instructors as to the individual’s level of fitness. It is therefore critical that the Referees stay fit and up to date with their training or else they can be excluded from the FIFA list. The Referees will be subjected to at least three fitness tests every year and if the Fitness Instructors fail to do this or subsequently the Referees perform below the required level, the Fitness Instructors may also be excluded from the FIFA listing, as constant reviews will be performed.
He took time to congratulate Kimbell Ward who is currently the only FIFA Referee within the Federation of St.Kitts and Nevis and also commended the two Referee’s Assistants within the Federation, Inniss and Browne.
Nisbett also congratulated FIFA Technical Instructor Malcolm Ramsey, for his untiring efforts in training young Referees on the island of Nevis. ‘He conducts a regular training program for young aspiring referees on the island and he has done a wonderful job,’ said Nisbett.
He appealed to young persons who are interested in officiating the game to come forward and be trained. ‘The sky is the limit. There are so many opportunities. The pay day is great and there are travel opportunities worldwide,’ he said. He also appealed to athletes to subject themselves to a coordinated training and fitness program. ‘You would hear a lot of people say that they are training but they just do their own thing. It is not a well thought out and structured program.’ He noted that he was available to assist the athletes on the island in developing such a program.