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Old Fri Jun 03, 2005, 09:06am
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Hello.

I'm looking to purchase a wireless headset for officials' training purposes.

Do you know of a reputable product?

I'm looking for the on-field official to wear a device. It has to be non-intrusive. It should be as small as possible. (However, I do recognize that with decreased size comes increased price, so all sizes will be considered.) It should have the ability for two-way communication with the on-field official and the off-field evaluator/trainer. Perhaps the official's mic will be a small clip on mic, and the speaker will wrap around his ear.

If you know of such a product, could you please let me know?

Thanks!
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Old Fri Jun 03, 2005, 09:45am
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Just to clarify, you are looking for something that an on-field official can wear so they can communicate with someone in the stands for observation/training purposes.

What about a two way walkie talkie. Something like this: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage....=1099391907856

This may be a little bulky for what you are looking for. I've never used this product but it does say it has a hands free feature and comes with headsets. The wire for the headset would probably have to be fed down under the shirt. Plus you could purchase a couple pairs and communicate with every official on the field at the same time as long as they were on the same channel. Not a bad training idea.

Just a thought.
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Old Fri Jun 03, 2005, 01:27pm
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Quote:
Originally posted by grantsrc
Just to clarify, you are looking for something that an on-field official can wear so they can communicate with someone in the stands for observation/training purposes.

What about a two way walkie talkie. Something like this: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage....=1099391907856

This may be a little bulky for what you are looking for. I've never used this product but it does say it has a hands free feature and comes with headsets. The wire for the headset would probably have to be fed down under the shirt. Plus you could purchase a couple pairs and communicate with every official on the field at the same time as long as they were on the same channel. Not a bad training idea.

Just a thought.
Even if you find something that's wireless I imagine you're still going to need to wear a pack on you belt. I would suggest what grantsrc suggested.
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Old Sat Jun 04, 2005, 08:26am
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JugRef, I wasn't going to reply to this because you need to do what you want to do and it's your business, not mine. But have you considered what a distraction this might be for the on-field officials? I mean they're trying to administer a game with someone talking to them - as if the coaches weren't enough. We have evaluators too but they meet with the entire crew immediately at halftime while things are fresh in our heads and again at the end of the game. Why wouldn't that work?
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Old Sat Jun 04, 2005, 12:55pm
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We have actually tried this, but with one-way communication only. We used a small PRM walkie talkie (no permits required to use them, as long as they are within the assigned frequency band).

The official had an ear piece, and the radio on a pouch on his belt. The radios are quite small and light, so it will not be in the way. These PRM radios have many different channels, so you could have a different channel for each position, if you want. We had just one official wearing the equipment.

The trick is of course to know when to talk, to make sure you don't disturb the official. We would give short reminders after the play was completely over, such as "Don't forget to kill the clock", "Remember to square off", "Try to pinch in further", and so on. We found this to be a very useful tool, but we pretty much used it for mechanics only.

I suggest you give it a try. It might not work with every official, but most of the guys we tried it on liked it. You could see their mechanics improve from drive to drive. Giving almost instant feedback while they are actually doing it, and not watching tape, is a great teaching tool.

Good luck!

Now I'm gonna watch a NFL Europe game!
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Old Sun Jun 05, 2005, 10:54am
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Quote:
Originally posted by ljudge
JugRef, I wasn't going to reply to this because you need to do what you want to do and it's your business, not mine. But have you considered what a distraction this might be for the on-field officials? I mean they're trying to administer a game with someone talking to them - as if the coaches weren't enough. We have evaluators too but they meet with the entire crew immediately at halftime while things are fresh in our heads and again at the end of the game. Why wouldn't that work?
I have thought about all aspects of the two-way communications. Thank you for mentioning your thoughts, all the same. I do think it is still a great idea. All the people in my local association know enough to not talk at the wrong times. I would still generate an FAQ on how use the system, though.

The other way of using the system is to have a seasoned official wear the device, and the receiver is hooked up to an audience so that they all may listen while the game is going on. Even having a camcorder with a similar angle to that of the officials'. He could then talk throughout each play.
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Old Tue Jun 14, 2005, 11:10pm
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I've been to basketball camps where instructors were behind us on the baseline saying very brief instructions during a live ball. That wasn't distracting to me, although an ear piece walky-talky might have been. In fact, when I trained new officials, I would do the same thing, although I limited virtually all remarks to "stay out of the lane" and maybe a couple of others ("watch off the ball"). That's where real time communication is most helpful. In football, after the ball has been spotted but before the huddle breaks, I can't see anything wrong with quick bits of information.

I would caution instructors to limit themselves to one remark or one issue, and also have some sort of signal that that official gives when he doesn't understand something without tipping everyone else (like holding his arms out and palms up) there off that he didn't get the point.
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Old Tue Jun 14, 2005, 11:20pm
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Good points Aggie.
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