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   VMFHL: umpiring
?Umpiring & Rules






General, Assignments, TD Duties and Reporting






Anyone under the age of 19 must wear a mouthguard. Failure to wear a mouthguard will result in being sent off the field of play, the player may return to the game when he satisfies this rule.

All players must wear shin-guards and mouthguards irrespective of age or their insurance coverage is void.

All players must?register their personal, permanent address and contact details for their insurance to be valid.?


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Apart from the FIH Rules of Hockey, play in the VMFHL is governed by the Bylaws of the league and the Code of Conduct. The Bylaws refer to the organization of team, duties of the club and team, collective penalties for infringement of the Rules and league commitments, and the individual player penalties. The Code of Conduct is acknowledged (or signed) by every player in the VMFHL. It is a commitment to observe sporting behaviour and fair play. A violation of the Code may result in an individual penalty, card or a disciplinary hearing.

The overwhelming concern of the Rules, Bylaws and Code is athlete safety.


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For reasons of privacy the VMFHL no longer supplies disciplinary suspensions on-line.
If you wish a current disciplinary list please apply to the League Administrator idendifying your club / team / and position.


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The VMFHL actively recruits umpires. Training is offered by BCFHA in modules at various times throughout the year and the league mentors new umpires.

Umpires are athletes. It is possible to make a career in hockey by progressing through the various levels of umpiring accreditation. Some of our league umpires have attained FIH International status and have umpired international matches at the Pan-American Games, the Olympic Games and the Champions Trophy.

Umpires may be members of clubs or registered as individuals through FHBC. If they are members of clubs, these umpires in their other hockey capacities are required to exercise caution and show no exhuberant partianship. Such partianship follows you as an official.

Please contact the league administrator if you are interested or need more information.

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Vancouver Men's Field Hockey League

?Please make sure that you are aware of the Code of Conduct as well as the FIH Rules and local variations.



In co-ordination with the women's league, an Umpiring Committee now makes all the assignements for the VMFHL Premier Divisions.

In the Competitive and Recreational Divisions assignments are initially by clubs who are responsible for providing an umpire. However, these assignments are also offered to other league umpires and many of the assignments are eventually covered by league appointed umpires.

This means several things. First, the umpiring list will change as re-assignments are made. Second, the list may change frequently during the week. Thus, the VMFHL has decided to continue the policy of e-mailing the umpire lists to club/team contacts.

The last update will typically be on Friday. This update will not require teams to umprire where they previously had not expected an assignment but may relieve them of a responsibility. The "Officials" section of the "Schedule" page of this website will only note the initial assignments.



#1 The umpire's main responsibility is to the safety of the athletes and officials.
#2 The umpires should call-off or end a match if the state of the playing surface present any danger. This includes cold temperatures and the likelihood of lightning.
#3 The umpire is part of a team with the other umpire, TD and other officials. Consultation with the other umpire (and TD) is vital. Communication must also be seen to be done - it gives the athletes confidence.
#4 Look smart and act authoratively.





You might be asked to be the TD on a Premier game. What does that entail?

1. Come dressed to ump (in case one of the onfield guys pulls up lame) - you are the TD and Reserve Ump simultaneously.

2. Stopwatch and pen on clipboard, you record the data for the match. (A one-man tech table)

3. Check ID Cards pre-game. Best plan is for the 2 umps to take one team and the TD to take the other team?- line them up in the order they appear on game sheet, and check ID by comparing the name on the sheet?to the ID Picture to the face in front of you. 16 guys - 10 seconds each - done in 3 minutes.

No ID Pic - no play. Any late-comer must not play until you have processed him - if you're busy, he waits.

4. Control the team bench area - kick out non-players except for the 2 coaches or managers - send them to the other side of field.

Time the 2 minute Greens. Time the Yellows if any. If there is a Red Card, make sure the player leaves the park immediately - he is not permitted to stay on the grounds. Delay the restart if necesary. You are a one-man tech table.

5. Watch the field as well as the benches areas - if you see an off-the-ball incident that was missed by the umps because they were looking elsewhere, at the next stoppage you get the attention of the near-side ump and tell him to issue a YC (or even a Red if it was truly ugly) to the player you caught in the off-the-ball incident. (Tech tables at tournament matches don't usually have that authority, but in our League the TD is a 3rd ump with power to issue cards if needed.)

6. TD's who do the job properly are usually pretty busy. A lot of teams complain that the TD is a waste of money because they do nothing. But it's not the case if you do what should be done.

Record who scored goals. At end of game, with the 2 umps, have a chat and pick a "man of the match" (only one - doesn't matter which team - he is the MVP for that game.)?

7. Send the match sheets to the League Admin by scanning them and attaching to your e-mailed match report.

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#1 What happens when an incident report is received?

The VMFHL will always investigate and act whenever it receives an umpire or TD request to do so. However, you must award a red card for the request to be taken very far or you must give clear reasons why there was no opportunity to issue a red card. The issue of a yellow card and a request for a inquiry can have?little credability. The umpires and TD will be informed of the result of the inquiry.

#2. Can I give a red card after the game has ended or to a player on the bench?

Yes. For any incident / breach of the rules that takes place immediatley after the game a yellow or red card may be shown to the individual player or team captain.

Yes. A card may be awarded to a player on the bench for inappropriate behaviour. Such behaviour may consist of verbal assaults on other players or umpires. When a card is awarded in such circumstances the team captain will be asked to nominate a player on the field to serve the penalty. If he fails to name a player the umpire will select a player to serve the penalty.

#3. If an umpire is mobbed by players protesting a call or non-call, what can the umpire do?

First, be calm. Be aware of what is happening. Politely, and in measured tones, ask the captain to approach you and dismiss his players. Discuss the incident that led to the reaction by the players as appropriate. It may be as short as "that is what I saw".

If the mobbing continues, summon the other umpire. The non-presiding umpire should note the main culprits in the mobbing. After the incident is resolved slowly and deliberately show the appropriate green / yellow / red card(s). Avoid making any comments that you will later regret.

Any persistant mobbing incident must result in a card. Any second incident should be a major (a long yellow or red) card.

#4. If an umpire or TD experiences racial or gender harassment on the field or after or hears or sees it being displayed to others, what should they do?

Make sure that you know exactly what has been said or gestured and by whom. Stop the game immediately. Summon the non-presiding umpire and the TD and ask them what they heard/saw. Repeat what you have heard /saw of the harassment. Issue a red card noting in detail the name, playing number, FHBC number and keep (take) the Photo ID card of the player. Once everyone has settled down restart the game with a bully. Submit a detailed report to the League Administrator and the Discipline Chair as soon as possible.

#5. What if other types of harassment occur (slurs against the person for instance)?

Harassment in any form is contrary to the rules and Code of Conduct and must be penalised. If it is a deliberate taunt aimed at the umpire, TD or other player and mild you may give a warning before progressing on to cards. If vicious then immediately go to cards. Red cards suspensions will normally be doubled by the Disciplinary Chair.

#5 What do you do if you suspect harassment (or one team complains about it) but the verbal harassment is in a language other than English?

At a convenient point ask the other umpire or TD if they understand the language being spoken. If they do, ask them to listen carefully and act. If they can be of no assistance with the language try to judge the level of excitment in the exchange and if high warn the players that you will move to cards if it is not toned down. Do not rely on third party translations (usually offered by the opposing side and of no evidentiary value).

#6. What do you do if a player comes to you and complains of racial harassment?

Get the details (his name, playing number and FHBC number and ask him exaltly what has been said and by whom). Tell the complainant that after the game you will require him to write out the same information and imediately repeat the complaint to the other umpire and TD. If the complaint is against you, the other umpire or the TD you should record the accusation in your report. Harassment also includes the levelling of patently false charges of discrimination. ['You always favour the green guys' type of comment]. Please note that a spurious claim of racial harassment (or prejudice) is itself classed as harassment.

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Umpiring in BC (BCFHA)

Umpiring Hockey (US)

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