Every kickball game needs a referee to enforce the rules. For most kickball leagues, there are three referees needed to perform the duties required in a game. These three referees are called the head referee, first base referee, and third base referee.
The Head Referee
The head referee stands at home plate behind the catcher and kicker. His job is to call the strike zone and determine which pitches are strikes and balls. The head referee also has the final decision in the game if the referees disagree on a call. Since this referee stands at home plate, it is his job to call base runners safe when they score at home. The head referee will make the final call on an ejection or appeal if the team captains request an appeal on a previous play.
The first base referee and the third base referee stand at first base and third base respectively. Their job is to call a base runner safe or out when they reach the base. They are also responsible for calling fair balls and foul balls.
At the start of the game, both teams will hand the head referee their lineup cards. The lineup is similar to the batting order in baseball and softball and determines the order of kickers during the at-bat.
How To Become a Referee
Anyone can be a referee. Once you get a handle on the rules of the sport, you can get certified as an official referee and start officiating your first game. Here are some tips for your first game as a kickball referee:
- Don't let players or spectators intimidate you on your calls
- Your word and decision is final
- Be direct with players and don't go back on your previous calls or worry about a mistake in a ruling
- Get official clothes such as a black and white jersey
- Get a whistle so you can signal a stoppage and dead ball
- Have a clipboard and pen to write down notes during the game
- Understand the strike zone and how to call foul, fair, strikes, and balls
- Don't abuse your power as an official - with great power comes great responsibility.