How to become a lacrosse referee

SWR - Games of the World

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In the middle of the 19th century, the rules of lacrosse were first recorded in writing. In the past it was customary for only men to play, today there are also women's teams and competitions.

Men's lacrosse (field lacrosse):

The game:

The teams try to throw the ball into the opposing goal by passing them quickly. You can run as far as you want with the ball. A player carrying the ball may be checked with the body and fists attached to the club. In addition, a defender may check the stick of the player carrying the ball with his stick, i.e. he tries to knock the ball out of the net. The backward movement must not exceed 90Â °. The forearms that touch the club also count as the club in this case.

The players:

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Each team can nominate 23 players for a game. There are ten players on the field. These consist of the goalkeeper, three defenders, three midfielders and three attackers. Any number of players can be changed at any time. The players use clubs that are between 1.00 and 1.80 meters long.
According to international rules, any number of long clubs can be used. Use is made of this rule in particular in the underpowered game.

Face off:

At the kick-off there are three players from each team in the middle third of the field. After the referee's whistle, two players in the middle try to play the ball between them. Only when one team is in possession of the ball (the referee calls "possession"), the other players are allowed to leave their third.

The playing time:

The playing time is 4 x 20 minutes. Two timeouts are allowed per team. If there is a tie at the end of the game, 2 x 5 minutes extra time will be played, in which the first goal decides (sudden death).

The playing field:

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As in ice hockey, you can continue to play on the football field-sized grass field from behind the goal to the line. After a missed shot on goal, the team whose player is closest to the ball rolling over the off-line receives the ball. On the side of the field between the team benches is the penalty box, in which the players have to serve their time penalties.


Fouls are punished with time penalties or lead to the loss of the ball. The time penalties last 30 seconds, 1 minute or, in particularly severe cases, 3 minutes. A distinction is made between personal and technical fouls. Personal fouls are shoving, with the club held shoulder-width apart and used as resistance (cross checking), hits with the club that hit the body or head (slashing), unnecessary hardness , unsportsmanlike conduct or improper equipment. The penalty time for a personal foul is one to three minutes. Technical fouls include offside, pushing from behind, holding and the active use of the free arm of a player carrying the ball. As in ice hockey, the players are released from their penalty by conceding a goal. It is forbidden for players to speak to the referee during the game. Decisions are accepted without being contradicted.


Four players must always be in their own and three in the opposing half. Even the slightest crossing of the center line leads to a technical foul. The playing field is divided into three parts: attack, midfield and defense. The goals are moved into the field, allowing players to continue playing behind the goal.

Box lacrosse:

The most popular version of the game of lacrosse today is box lacrosse. It is played predominantly in Canada and in major ice hockey arenas. The rules of this indoor variant differ considerably from those of field lacrosse in some points. Field lacrosse is played 4 x 20 minutes, boxing lacrosse only 4 x 15 minutes. The number of players is lower in boxing lacrosse. Each team still consists of 23 players, 17 of whom are set up in boxing lacrosse, but only five players and a goalkeeper take turns on the field. In field lacrosse, however, there are 10 on the court. The playing field and the goals are smaller in boxing lacrosse. Due to the usual boards in the ice hockey arenas, the game in the hall becomes harder, which is also reflected in the foul regulations.

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