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Rugby League is a very intense, physically demanding sport, made up of two very exhausting halves. In a game of Rugby League, a player will become involved in bursts of high intensity work with short recovery periods. These work periods may include running the ball, chasing an attacker and tackling. The recovery period is the time between performing these activities, where lower intensity activities are carried out. The length of the recovery will vary, depending on what is happening in the play.

Unfortunately, match officials do not always get the same recovery periods and their fitness training must mirror the game's expectations. The successful negotiation of the NZRL Referees Fitness Testing Model, at the appropriate level, by match officials with go some way to ensuring that those expectations are consistently met.

Not unlike the players who have good aerobic endurance are able to recover from intense bursts of activity quickly, so must match officials. As the speed of Rugby League has increased in recent years and continues to do so, the ability to recover quickly has become very important. A match official with good aerobic fitness levels will have better concentration and maintain a higher level of accurate decision making skill for the entire game. This will allow the players to perform to their best for the entire game and for the game to a fair and entertaining spectacle.

For a copy of the NZRL Referees Fitness Testing Model click here (pdf).
This should be read in conjunction with the Requirements for Referees document here (pdf).