NFL Football Operations kicked off its 2015 League year at NFL officiating clinics on May 15-17 and May 28-30 in Newark, New Jersey. Nine new officials joined the League's returning veterans and learned how to improve their physical conditioning and on field performance and minimize their risk of injury from health and fitness experts.
At the clinics, officials focused specifically on endurance, proper stretching techniques, movement skills, nutrition and recovery after games.
"We're trying to improve their performance and their wellness and this is designed to make them better," said NFL vice president of officiating Dean Blandino.
NFL officiating tests officials on their flexibility, agility and functional movement -- all skills necessary for proper officiating in the NFL. The clinics featured a physical assessment that all officials must go through before being cleared to work in the upcoming season.
"They're trying to help us as far as extending our careers and giving us ways to help recover, so I think it's really beneficial," said Terrence Miles, a back judge entering his eighth season as an NFL official.
The NFL's officials are premier athletes who run, change direction and backpedal -- all while making split-second decisions. It is important to make sure that their training and preparation match the athletic demands of the job. The League holds its officiating clinics in May to give the officials eight weeks to continue to develop their fitness level, endurance and overall officiating abilities before the 2015 NFL season begins.