Coaches

Plans, Tools, Tips....

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Sports Parent

What Makes a Nightmare Sports Parent... And What Makes A Great One

Article written by Steve Henson

"Athletics is one of the best ways for young people to take risks and deal with failure because the consequences aren’t fatal, they aren’t permanent. We’re talking about a game. So they usually don’t want or need a parent to rescue them when something goes wrong.
"Once you as a parent are assured the team is a safe environment, release your child to the coach and to the game. That way all successes are theirs, all failures are theirs."

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Coach Education

Importance of Coaching Education    (article from nays.org - National Alliance for Youth Sports)

Most youth sports coaches are unprepared for their position. Studiesshow that only 5-10% of youth...

United States Youth Soccer (US Youth Soccer)

U.S. Soccer Federation unveils new coaching curriculum for coaches of players ages 5-12
April 20, 2011

From Soccer America

 The U.S. Soccer Federation has unveiled its new coaching curriculum for coaches of players ages 5-12. Youth Technical DirectorClaudio Reyna presented the "age-appropriate roadmap" to player development on Wednesday to youth soccer coaches and directors at the Nike International Headquarters in Beaverton, Ore. The curriculum is available for download on ussocccer.com at http://www.ussoccer.com/Coaches/Coaching-Education/Zone-1.aspx

Reyna, who captained the USA at two World Cups, said four key points of the curriculum are:

1. Development over winning.

"Our players are naturally competitive," Reyna said. "We don’t need to ramp that up anymore. The whistle blows, our kids want to win. That’s one of our strengths and we’re proud of it. But if we’re manipulating and thinking winning-over-development, we’re making a huge mistake. We’re short-cutting the development of players. ...

"Our aim is to produce skillful, creative, confident players."

Reyna, who made several references to Barcelona’s famed youth program, quoted star playmaker Xavi: "Some youth academies worry about winning. We worry about education."

2. Quality Training.

"Make every session a quality session, come prepared, don’t waste time," Reyna said. "Keep players focused and active. … If you have 12 one-hour sessions in a month, and you waste 10 minutes each session, you can waste two sessions in a month."

3. Age appropriate.

"Providing players with too much too soon leads to confusion and hurts development," he said. "We don’t need coaches teaching 8-year-olds zonal defending or an offside trap, just like we don’t teach a second-grader calculus. Kids learn rapidly, but at different stages in their lives."

4. Have fun and inspire your players. 

"If we make it fun, we’re going to inspire them. Soccer is a great, fun game," said Reyna. "Let’s make sure we create an environment so that our players want to come back to our training sessions and be part of the fun."


(FURTHER READING: Members of the U.S. Soccer technical staff -- Dave Chesler, Tony Lepore, Jill Ellis and April Heinrichs -- discuss the curriculum HERE.)

 

COACHING WOMEN: GOING AGAINST THE INSTINCTS OF MY GENDER

By Anson Dorrance, University of North Carolina

 

Although I was young, when I was first asked to coach the University of North Carolina (UNC) men's soccer team in 1974, I was prepared. Being male, and a devoted athlete and scrappy soccer player...

"Assistant Coach"

Some links and documents to help with coaching

 
Ball Handling and Footwork progression
 
Passing / Communication / First Touch / Combination / Off the Ball Movement
 
Small sided games allow for more ’touches’ per player
 
Dribbling / Ball Control
 

 

SHOULD A 7-YEAR OLD PLAY ON A 10-YEAR OLD TEAM?

by Maureen Dracup, ODP and NY State West coach

     If a child is the best reader in the class, moving him out of the classroom and into the grade above is not typically considered. We might provide a more challenging book or focus on reading...