This is part one of the FIFA Fitness Tests for Referees and Assistant Referees, also called the FIFA High-Intensity Fitness Test or Repeated Sprint Ability (RSA). The test involves 6 x 40m sprints followed by a maximum of 1-minute recovery after each sprint. See also the FIFA Interval Test - Part 2.
purpose: this is a test of the ability to recover between sprint efforts and produce high-intensity sprints repeatedly, designed to test the physical demands of soccer referees.
equipment required: timing gates (or 2 stopwatches), stopwatch for timing recovery, measuring tape, marker cones, at least 50 meters of running track.
pre-test: Explain the test procedures to the subject. Perform screening of health risks and obtain informed consent. Prepare forms and record basic information such as age, height, body weight, gender and test conditions. Measure and use cones to mark out the course. See more details of pre-test procedures.
procedure: timing gates (preferred) and marker cones are placed 40 meters apart to indicate the sprint distance. A start line is also marked 1.5 meters before the timing gates. The participant's front foot is placed behind the starting line, and when ready begins the first sprint, running maximally through the gate 40m away. The sprint time is recorded. A stopwatch is used to record the recovery time. The subject has 1 minute to return to the start, before sprinting again. A total of 6 sprints are completed.
variation: If it is not possible to record the times using timing gates, stopwatches and two assistants are required. One person signals the moment the subject runs through the first gate using a flag signal, while the second person is positioned in line with the second gate and stops the stopwatch when the subject runs past the 40m marker (and also starts the recovery stopwatch).
scoring: To pass the test, referees are required to achieve a certain standard sprint time for all sprints. For the men, each sprint must be under 6.2 seconds for international referees, 6.0 seconds for international assistant referees, 6.4 seconds for national referees, 6.2 seconds for national assistant referees. For women referees, each sprint must be under 6.6 seconds for international referees, 6.4 seconds for international assistant referees, 6.8 seconds for national referees, 6.6 seconds for national assistant referees. If a referee falls or trips, they are given another trial (40 m). If a referee does not achieve the standard in 1 trial out of the six, then they are given 1 more trial (and one only) immediately after the 6th trial. If they fail 2 trials, the test is failed.
target population: This test was developed specifically for soccer referees, though it is suitable for similar sports teams which are intermittent in nature, such as basketball, hockey, rugby, and AFL.
comments: athletics spikes may not be worn.
- The time between the end of FIFA Interval Test - Part 1 and the start of Part 2 should be 6 to 8 minutes maximum.
- There were changes made to this test in about 2016 to make it more demanding. The recovery period between sprints was reduced from one minute 30 seconds to just 60 seconds. No other change was made.
The Test in Action
- This test is part one of the FIFA Testing for Referees
- Sprint recovery test — designed for AFL players, 6 x 30m sprints, starting at 20 second intervals.
- Phosphate recovery test — 7 x 7-second sprints with 23 seconds recovery.
- Sprint fatigue test — 10 x 30m sprints, starting every 30 seconds.
- RAST — 6 x 35m sprints, with a 10 second recovery between each sprint
- Repeat Sprint Ability Test — 10 x 20m, starting every 20 seconds.
- Dal Monte repeat sprint test — 5 x 50 m (men) or 40 m (women), at intervals of 1 minute.
- Sonic Test — test involves 8 x 40m sprints, starting every 40 seconds (new).
- FIFA Interval Test (Part 2) - alternating 75m run and 25m walk, repeating this for 10 laps.
- FIFA Change of Direction Ability (CODA) Test — forwards and sideways running over 8-10 meters.
- Assistant Referee Intermittent Endurance Test — an intermittent yo-yo type test involving forwards and sideways running
- Dynamic Yo-Yo Test — a modified yo-yo test designed specifically for football referees
- FIFA Testing for Referees, including the FIFA Change of Direction Ability (CODA): forwards and sideways running over 8-10 meters.
- Fitness tests for field officials (umpires, referees)
- Warming up for sprint testing
- Other anaerobic capacity tests
- Nutrition for Field Officials, Referees and Umpires
- About fitness testing for soccer
- Testing for intermittent sports