How did YOU learn the rules?

Lacrosse Rules and Equipment
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dislaxxic
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How did YOU learn the rules?

Post by dislaxxic » Mon Sep 03, 2018 9:09 pm

I have been interested in a while in this subject, something that truly transcends the boy-girl rules divide, and goes at how players LEARN the rules of lacrosse.

I had a thread going on this topic on the LP site (RIP) but it didn't get TOO far along before i got distracted.

My feeling, from my own experiences, is that youth players largely learn the actual game-day rules by listening to their coaches (and parents) interacting with officials during games.

Can we stipulate from the start that this is a less-than-optimal method??

We listened to certain things during practice, sure...talking about in middle school and junior high coming up...things like the requirements of offsides, play around the crease, subbing, no hands, etc., etc...not a lot of detail, just more broad technical aspects of the game.

In my brief career as a middle school boys coach, we tried a couple chalk talks, which, with a room full of 6th, 7th and 8th grade boys, quickly devolved into wet willies, whispered insults and secrets, passing notes about girls, etc., etc...

We persevered and had a few more sit downs with players, then parents, then players AND parents, and felt like we made some strides.

Should all your coaches take a test, pass-fail, just to get them to open the book and realize the rules have changed from when THEY played?

Thoughts? How did YOU learn the rules?

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"The purpose of writing is to inflate weak ideas, obscure poor reasoning, and inhibit clarity. With a little practice, writing can be an intimidating and impenetrable fog." - Calvin, to Hobbes

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Matnum PI
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Re: How did YOU learn the rules?

Post by Matnum PI » Thu Sep 06, 2018 9:54 pm

By playing. Which I believe is the 2nd best learning method. The best, I was told/I read, is teaching.
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HooDat
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Re: How did YOU learn the rules?

Post by HooDat » Fri Sep 07, 2018 12:29 pm

Matnum PI wrote:By playing. Which I believe is the 2nd best learning method. The best, I was told/I read, is teaching.
absolutely true.

I originally learned the rules in games.

I learned the rules much more comprehensively as a coach.

I bet to really, REALLY, learn the rules you have to officiate! But outside of a few scrimmages, I have not been brave enough to don the stripes...
STILL somewhere back in the day....

...and waiting/hoping for a tinfoil hat emoji......

Superdaves
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Re: How did YOU learn the rules?

Post by Superdaves » Fri Sep 07, 2018 1:44 pm

We have done it both ways with chalk talks (using videos to highlight infractions of actual game play, both theirs and some NLL or MLL level play) and scrimmages. What I have noticed is that you need people that are more focused on the rules to outline to the players rather than the head coach, who typically focuses on the ball, ball movement and set plays. Having someone watch the off ball play and call penalties during scrimmage helps to highlight some of the more obscure rules rather than just things like cross checking, holding, etc. It helps, as the kids get older, to have a few of them become officials (we can start at 12 yo) as they tend to tell their teammates about some of the rules during practice and games. Test taking is usually not effective as kids have various learning abilities ( even test taking abilities). While that shouldn't prevent them from knowing the rules but it might not show if they get nervous, have problems with reading/reading comprehension etc.

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dislaxxic
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Re: How did YOU learn the rules?

Post by dislaxxic » Fri Sep 07, 2018 3:13 pm

Interesting. Speaking as one of those kids that was not real good at testing in general...we have had some success with a type of online testing that is open book and responds with feedback immediately with information, whether the answer is right or wrong. A lot of True/False. Some multiple choice. Direction to the actual passage in the rule book is enlightening as well.

For adults...coaches and parents in particular, we find a written test, again open book with no pressure, gets the participants to actually OPEN THE RULEBOOK...which ends up opening eyes quite a bit.

How often have you heard "WARD!!" when you see a pole slip up under an attackman's armpit, whereupon the A lifts his arm up to let the stick roll away?? ALL. THE. TIME. Right? That's a true-false answer (with citation) that always gets a lot of conversation going...

Good stuff. Keep it coming...

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"The purpose of writing is to inflate weak ideas, obscure poor reasoning, and inhibit clarity. With a little practice, writing can be an intimidating and impenetrable fog." - Calvin, to Hobbes

Spenny
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Re: How did YOU learn the rules?

Post by Spenny » Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:26 am

i learned a lot by playing. i learned a lot more when i started coaching. i realized how little i knew when getting taken out of the stands to ref a HS freshman game with another long time coach

i like coaching too much to become a ref, but will someday take the class.

anyway:
players should learn from playing with help from their coaches and the refs
coaches should learn from reading with help from the refs
parents should learn from electric shock therapy.

Laxref39
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Re: How did YOU learn the rules?

Post by Laxref39 » Wed Oct 10, 2018 9:07 pm

Can I make a suggestion. Invite a referee who you find to be credible with the knowledge of the rules to a chalk talk with the specific purpose of going over the rules. Encourage your players to listen to the officials during games. Use the local rules interpreter. Highlight sections in the rule book that seem awkward and follow up with the rules interpreter.

molo
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Re: How did YOU learn the rules?

Post by molo » Fri Dec 07, 2018 6:34 pm

My father was a coach when I was in elementary and middle school. I went to lots of his games and practices, then began to play in fifth grade, which was in the middle school where I went to school. When I started coaching, I attended clinics at Hopkins and Navy along with the rules interpretation sessions--both for both the male and female versions of the game--presented by local officials for Baltimore County teams. For clarification, I asked questions of officials that I knew personally. The late Scott Boyle, who suffered a fatal heart attack while officiating, was a tremendous help.
Finally, it need not be said that virtually every other person in the stands at Homewood is an expert, and few are reluctant to share their opinions.

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3rdPersonPlural
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Re: How did YOU learn the rules?

Post by 3rdPersonPlural » Thu Feb 07, 2019 12:29 pm

I learned the rules as a player in the '70's. When I began to officiate in 2004 I really thought about them for the first time. To a certain extent, my experience with the rules as a player doesn't inform my interpretation of the rules as much as one would expect. Especially as my last experience as a player was college and PoCo, and the bulk of my officiating is on youth fields.

Something I've noticed about kids picking up rules: Coaches never get around to teaching kids that when an out-of-bounds ball is awarded to you, you step inbounds to restart. You can tell a lot about the game experience of a team by how often the ref has to instruct the players to 'step inbounds please. Step inbounds so I can restart."

MidwestLaxer
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Re: How did YOU learn the rules?

Post by MidwestLaxer » Tue Apr 16, 2019 9:20 am

I grew up in the men’s game as a player and coach.

When my daughter was old enough, I helped out her team. I quickly learned that a zone defense wasn’t the same between the sports...evidenced by 7 shooting space calls in a row. I asked about it and the official ran by and said, “hey coach, maybe you should learn the rules”...so I did.

I took the online rules courses through US Lacrosse. I completed an in person rules course. I became a rated official doing club (youth) level play in my area. Towards the end of my second year, I was asked if I could do a low level collegiate game in my town...so I did. Immediately after that game I was given more NCAA assignments. The next year I did more NCAA games then local youth...the whole time I was still coaching.

Needless to say, I am now very proficient in the rules...and for any coach, I recommend spending a season or two in an umpire’s shoe...especially before opening your mouth on the sidelines.

IMO, worth it. 100%.

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