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How to Get Certified As a Basketball Referee

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If you are a basketball enthusiast, obtaining a basketball referee certification can be a great way to generate some extra income. It can even lead to full-time opportunities if you play your cards right. Like most careers — especially in sports — you have to start at the beginning and work your way up. Read on to discover how to become a basketball referee.

Understand the Position’s Demands

Many sports fans don’t realize how physically and mentally exhausting officiating can be. Before you start seeking out your certification, it’s important that you are confident in your ability to handle a stressful position.

First, are you in good shape? Basketball officials are constantly in motion. On average, referees run between one and four miles per game. Second, if you want to get your basketball referee certification, you must know the ins and outs of the game. After all, you’re in charge. Finally, can you handle an angry crowd? You need to have thick skin to be a ref.

Climb the Ladder

If you have decided to pursue officiating, your best bet is to start by contacting your local basketball official’s association so you can work youth games. Also, feel free to speak to basketball officials working games in your school or local basketball courts. They can be, and often are, the best resource. From there, you can contact the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) to obtain information on registering for high school games.

If all goes well, your high school referee experience may lead to college opportunities, and possibly even professional positions, if you are lucky. The process to gain your basketball referee certification varies by league and location, but it can be as easy to start as filling out an online application. Start small, and keep taking that next step forward.

Shop the Best Referee Equipment

Whether you are officiating local youth games or NBA championships, using quality equipment is a must. After all, you can’t perform your best unless you’re fully equipped with the right tools for the job. Stock up on all of the essentials today. Enjoy free returns and exchanges when you shop at the Referee Store.


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