Achy Breaky Ref

April 21, 2006 at 5:45pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

Ugh, it’s that point in the soccer season when referees who have been doing a lot of games start to feel tired and worn out, and injuries start popping up. I am surprisingly energetic, despite a history of problems with in-season fatigue. But I’ve been bit by the injury bug. First came what appears to be an anterolateral shin splint in my right leg. It doesn’t bother me much when I walk or run forward, but changing directions, running backwards, and side-stepping are all somewhat painful.

Then last night I developed what could be a much more serious injury. (Where “serious”, in this case, means that it could really screw up my ability to referee for a while.) Not five minutes into my first game last night I felt a twinge, and I instantly knew what had happened: groin strain. The last 75 minutes of that game were not especially enjoyable. I then had to go ref a youth game immediately afterwards. The muscle felt like it loosened up a little, but I still had to be pretty cautious. I hoped that a good night’s sleep would magically cure me. It didn’t.

So here I am, a referee with a respectable chance of earning the honor to center one of the state championship games, and I’m injured. Just to make things fun, I’m scheduled to center what should be a great match between two of the state’s best boys teams on Saturday, and last I heard an assessor plans to be there. (That’s a good thing, by the way. It’s hard to get better without being critiqued by an assessor now and then.) I don’t want to, but I may have to bail out of some of my game assignments next week to allow myself some time to heal.

If anybody has any magic healing potions or techniques, I’m all ears!

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