AFL umpires went back to grass roots community umpiring groups this week as part of the new umpires development plan that has been rolled out this year.  AFL Umpire Development Manager, Adam Davis has started to roll out the new approach by re-focusing the “umpiring is everyone’s business” campaign turning the focus back to engaging with young community umpires to encourage them to enjoy their involvement, understand the pathway to an AFL career and learn to be better umpires.

AFL National Head of Umpiring, Wayne Campbell said “each weekend more than 12,000 umpires officiate in community football throughout the nation, but with more than 20,000 umpires required to cover these matches, there is an urgent need to grow the number of people involved in umpiring.

The Riddell Football League umpires in Melbourne’s outer west hosted five AFL umpires last night. Troy Pannell, Michael Craig, Jacob Mollison, Josh Mather and Tim Lougoon.  The VAFA umpires hosted two of the AFL’s finest, Brett Rosebury and Matt Stevic.

Meanwhile back at Visy Park, the AFL umpires training and coaching headquarters in Melbourne hosted 65 young community umpires from as far a field as Gippsland and Colac.  All AFL coaches were on deck to put the best young talent through an AFL coaching and training session.

Field umpires focused on the five key performance indicators AFL umpires have to achieve, accurate decision-making, management, communication, skills and bouncing.  Goal umpires completed a typical video session re-affirming the importance of good positioning and the boundary umpires chatted with Victorian coach Simon Leigh about their approach to umpiring and then went out to practice their throw-in technique.

Many parents continued their role as taxi drivers and were encouraged seeing their youngsters getting involved in a tough coaching and training session.

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