Tips to Having a Great Youth Soccer Year

A Happy Youth Soccer Team - (Photo:

Labor Day has arrived and while this date typically suggests an end of summer it also means the start of many youth soccer seasons across the country.  While your team begins preparations for what should be a fantastic season, here are some tips to make sure that this fall is the best it can possibly be.

Keep the game fun – Nothing is more important than having fun in youth soccer, and yes, that includes winning.  Keep the pressure off of your kids and team, and make sure that they enjoy the sport of soccer.  Kids sign up for these teams because their parents want them to have a good time, therefore, help them by keeping up a positive attitude and creating a pleasant environment of the soccer field.

Encourage friendships – Soccer is also a great way for kids to befriend one another, so try to encourage that this season.  Don’t discourage it by making trying to build competition and rivalry within the team.  Your team should be a happy group and there are many ways to help with that.  Use cooperative drills in practice that put players together and create bonds.  Make plans for social team events and dinners so that not all the focus is on the sport, and players have time to interact with each other socially.

Focus on developing skills – Try to help make your team the best group of soccer players they can be by helping them improve.  Every player has talents and weaknesses on the field so develop ways to help improve those skills during practice.  If players aren’t good passers, use more passing drills and so on.  People make most improvements in learning things when they are first introduced to them, so use this young age to the players’ advantage and share some wisdom about the game that is sure to take them to the next level.

Keep soccer fair – Everyone loves to blame the referee when they lose a game, but try not to let players blame each other or yourself for how a defeat or blown goal happens.  Your soccer team wins as a team and loses as a team.  Placing blame onto others is a weak move, so help inspire a team mentality to the children and work together as a cohesive unit.  It will bring the team together and will probably help make the entire season more fun and enjoyable.

This is an exciting time of the year for youth soccer players and the next few months are sure to be a fun voyage.  Make sure that it stays that way within your team so that these youngsters will look back on the year with the fondest of memories.


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