A new crop of referees from Japan have qualified to officiate at national competitions, following a training and examination carried out by IPC Powerlifting in partnership with the Japanese Paralympic Committee and the Japanese Federation for the Disabled between 18-21 June.
Sixteen new referees passed their exam and will now be added to existing list of IPC Powerlifting officials in Japan.
Jon Amos, Chairperson of the IPC Powerlifting Sport Technical Committee, carried out the training and was impressed with the high standard of the candidates. He also believes that the increasing numbers of referees in Japan will drive up standards in anticipation of Tokyo 2020.
“Only a fair and proportionate amount of officials from Japan can attend the Tokyo Paralympics, so this will surely create a friendly rivalry at national level that will ensure the standard remains high,” Amos said. “Only the best of the best will be offered the opportunity to attend the Tokyo Paralympics, when the time comes around.”
Amos also made reference to the number of women who took part which will help to ensure gender balance amongst officials:
“Particularly encouraging was the attendance of a number of female candidates that will be good for Japan, the Asian region and the sport in general in the future, especially if they choose to extend their knowledge of the English language to enable them to advance to international level officiating.”
Existing officials also attended the course to refresh their knowledge and keep up-to-date with the application of new rules.
The course is designed not only to educate candidates about the most current rules of the sport, but also highlight the importance of the responsibility they have to fully understand, and consistently apply, the rules at national and developmental level. This will help to prepare their coaches and athletes for the international arena.
Continuing the progress of powerlifting in Asia, over 220 athletes from 30 countries will gather in Almaty, Kazakhstan, from 26-30 July for the 2015 IPC Powerlifting Asian Open Championships.
The competition is a key qualification stop for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.