Coaches, the run on good weather continues. Hopefully it has led to some great soccer! Some items to think about.
1. SHARING PLAYERS (continued from last week): Although we encourage the sharing of players between two teams that are playing each other, it is against league policy to borrow a player from a team that is not on the roster of the two teams playing the game. It is a simple rule. An easy way to remember is that you would not have a ‘player form’ for a child that is not on either team, so that child cannot play. No forms on the field, then that player does not play.
2. PARKING ON GAME DAY: Please take a moment and email your parents about parking properly in Shepherdstown. Two things to think about – a. Pay attention and be mindful of “triple parking”; b. Drive slowly when parking around the U16 fields (hard to see the kids coming out from between cars).
3. LIGHTNING AND THUNDER: Please get everyone into a car during the storm event. Milling about around the parking lot does not count as “off the field”. Play resumes 30 mins after the last thunder or lightning. Please help us with this.
4. REMEMBER KID ZONE?: It is probably time to remind parents and your assistant coaches about the Kid Zone pledge. It was signed weeks ago, but should be our guide for sideline behavior on Saturdays. Item 5 has the following language that you can use to remind parents – “I will not yell out instructions. During the game, I will make only sportsmanlike comments that encourage my child and other players on both teams.” We all signed this pledge. Take a moment to remind everyone and game day will be full of bliss.
5. TECHNIQUE: Don’t forget to take the time to go over the proper technique for a push pass, instep kick, ball control with the foot, or other skill. I coach U16 and am still reminding players to put their “toe up” when they perform the push pass or when using the inside of their foot for ball control. For younger kids, you may even need to put your hand on their cleat to show them. New players need it. Experienced players can always use a reminder.
6. WHAT TO SAY: Some positive coaching phrases you can steal – “Great effort”, “Nice idea”, “I saw what you were trying to do”, “Perfect positioning”, “I noticed you were staying wide”, “I love how you don’t stab at the ball”, “Great movement to space”, “Love the communication”, “I think the U.S. World Cup team needs you”, “If you keep doing that, you’ll get a goal”, “I love your attitude on defense”, and “Nice ball control”.
As always, enjoy the game.
David P. Simmons
Harpers Ferry, WV