It is no different than the baseball players you will referee, the referee has a standard uniform and the equipment you must wear to compete professionally.

A referee's outfit starts with their outerwear, which could vary quite a bit depending on association patches, referee qualification patches, etc., which may be a requirement to wear and display, but the basic uniform remains the same.

The shirt must be a shade of blue, it doesn't really matter if it is light blue, dark blue or intermediate, but it must be blue. The type of shirt used is optional according to the personal preference of the person. It can be a sleeveless shirt, NOT a T-shirt, more like a polo shirt or a button-down dress shirt.

Remember to buy an oversized shirt, as it will probably have to be large enough to accommodate your chest protector. Some referees use balloon protectors, but that is no longer very common.

Pants must be dark blue or black. In a youth league, blue jeans are acceptable, but not recommended. If you are going to referee numerous games, look for a pair of dark blue or black pants, if you are only pressed for service, jeans are suitable.

A referee must wear a belt, not only to keep his pants and eliminate the plumber's crack, but to hang his ball bag. Black or dark blue socks and black shoes, tennis shoes or studs complete the referee's outward appearance. Some referees like to wear a cap, not a baseball cap, but a referee cap that has a smaller brim, but that is totally optional.

Now that you have a professional appearance, we will protect ourselves from injury.

The mask is probably the referee's best friend when it comes to suffering a painful and perhaps quite serious injury. The mask must fit properly, as a mask that moves around the face while moving the head can not only be dangerous, but will definitely restrict your vision.

The mask should allow maximum visibility as the masks have different settings for face protection and not all settings will be comfortable for you. As a referee, you must be able to see!

The chest protector is the following protective equipment and these vary in types, costs and options. I recommend that a referee buy a chest protector that has plastic flaps that protect the shoulders. In reality, getting hit in the chest or stomach with a ball will hurt, but the chances of serious injury lie in the shoulder area.

The ball bag is the next accessory to use. This duffel bag has a bag to store additional game balls, a plaque brush, and a ball and hit clicker, some will also have a copy of the official rules, but I don't advise showing that because it might invoke a silly rule challenge by an Enthusiastic coach. Have the book accessible, but not right in front.

The cup is the next piece of protective gear for a referee to wear, and if you doubt the need for this device, it will only take one hard ball that points directly at the family jewelry to change your mind. Save yourself the pain, just believe me.

The shin guards complete the protective gear and also come in various configurations. Some protectors have an additional flap that protects the top of the foot, some do not, some have additional knee protection that extends up to the thigh, others do not. Again it is a matter of personal preference.

Remember, when putting on your shin guards, always have the buckles on the outside of your leg. If you fasten the straps on the inside of your leg, they can snag and you will fall flat on your face when you try to walk.

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It is no different than the baseball players you will referee, the referee has a standard uniform and the equipment you must wear to compete professionally.