Machine Politics vs L'Équipe, August 2010. Photo by Steph Simcox
Sidebar: Are we ready for players with phsycial handicaps?
I didn't want to sidetrack the 2014 rules thread with this, but I had a thought last night after an experience at pick-up.
We had a first timer come to play who was hearing impaired. I can do a little ASL, so we communicated well enough, and he lip-read what I couldn't say with my hands. I found myself a bit embarrassed however when explaining things like the joust.
"We count down, 3,2,1, polo! or ask both sides if they are ready and signal with a whistle."
This is a moment I didn't like. It didn't feel good.
What I think should be developed is some basic signals for the game.
1) Add to the ruleset that the whistle blow must additionally have an arm signal (like an arm drop).
2) While it would be tedious to create specific signals for all rule infractions, it may be reasonable to make signals for the degree of infraction.
2a) We already use the raised arm for delayed penalty, and think this could be worked in seamlessly.
In the end, if we had simple gestures for
1) Start of play
2) Delayed penalty
4) Penalty box / power play
6) Goal / No goal
7) End of play
I'm only addressing one type of physical handicap here, and only offering one approach. I'm interested in the community's thoughts, or if any clubs have players that they make any special accommodations for.