A healthy lifestyle is essential for referees because an international career can last until the age of 45 (and in some countries, referees can work until 50 years of age). At this point, professional referees are required to retire, but they may continue to officiate in local amateur leagues.
Like elite football players, elite referees and assistant referees need to maintain a high level of physical fitness. In order to support this training, it is important that officials carefully address their nutritional needs. While some nutrition/hydration guidelines are available for match officials, there is still a lack of research in this area .
Former FIFA referee and current Head of FIFA Refereeing Massimo Busacca takes a water break. (2006)