NFHS issues rules changes for 2006-2007 season (click here to read)
Season Ending Thoughts

For most of us our uniforms and equipment have been packed away until next season while others will make the transition from folk style to free style and Greco. Many miles have been traveled, numerous nights spent away from home with countless hours spent on the mat.

I'm certain many of you have stories to tell of situations encountered, brilliant calls made or not so brilliant calls that shouldn't have been made and even close personal ties that developed or imploded with our pals in the corner chairs. Several new rules were introduced this past season which you hopefully found to be in the best interests of our sport. I would expect further changes are forthcoming making our jobs all the more vital in match administration.

I want to congratulate those of you receiving tournament assignments. That is the ultimate accolade to your skills and abilities. Those of you who didn't and aspire to such aspirations, I encourage you to continue your  pursuit through study of the rules and their interpretations, improving upon mat mechanics, taking more difficult assignments and talking/working with more experienced officials.   Your individual success need not be judged by whether you received a tournament assignment. Rather, take to heart that which John Wooden was quoted to say, "Success is the peace of mind which is in a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming".

Success is something that changes from one person to the other. Each personís definition of success is different depending on the situation. I think it is good for you to know your limitation so you can strive to better yourself. If you set your expectations too low or too high you are not doing yourself any good. You, and only you, must be honest with yourself. If you set them too low you are doomed to succeed but never to be challenged. If you set them too high you are doomed to fail and maybe never try again. It is up to you to know your capabilities and how well you can perform out on that mat, and ultimately go from there.

On a lighter note, and knowing the need for many of us to re-hydrate following a long, tough tournament session, I ran across the following story told to Norm Peterson, the TV character from Cheers'; heavyweight, beer-adoring, and diehard patron:

"Well ya see, Norm, it's like this... A herd of buffalo can only move as fast as the slowest buffalo. And when the herd is hunted, it is the slowest and weakest ones at the back that are killed first. This natural selection is good for the herd as a whole, because the general speed and health of the whole group keeps improving by the regular killing of the weakest members. In much the same way, the human brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells. Excessive intake of alcohol, as we know, kills brain cells. But naturally, it attacks the slowest and weakest brain cells first. In this way, regular consumption of beer eliminates the weaker brain cells, making the brain a faster and more efficient machine! That's why you always feel smarter after a few beers."

Have a safe and enjoyable off season.

See you on a mat somewhere.



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