Most people see youth soccer in a similar fashion. Sign up your child for a team (or have them tryout), pay a fee, practice, play matches, maybe travel to a tournament or two, and that’s that. That’s the whole point, right? To learn soccer and play it.
But some coaches are working to make their player’s experience more memorable. I know in my eyes it’s great for team building, but it’s also just fun for the kids and keeps things exciting. But it’s not easy and takes a lot of effort on the part of a coach and manager and often the parents. One thing I’m seeing more and more of are team websites that go beyond ‘Yay we won!’ or are nothing but a photo gallery. Some coaches are having a lot of fun with their sites trying to give kudos to their teams with funny stories about recent events, goofy pictures they highlight, fundraising, etc. I stumbled across one such site recently – a U9 girls team in Florida that share’s a name with my U12 girls team – The Lunachicks. Just read some of the recaps from their coach. The girls must love reading them with all the nicknames and campy writing.
Here is another great example. Two teams from Holly Springs, NC recently traveled to Washington D.C. to play a scrimmage in front of tens of thousands of fans prior to a DC United match. What an amazing experience for the kids:
Thanks BJ for sending the video! That must have been an amazing experience for them. BJ also created a YouTube channel for his team with lots of video.
I don’t believe coaches should feel they have to do these things, but if they (or their parents) have the time and energy to do it – how cool is that for the kids? I know my parents are wondering why, as a blogger with his own site, that our Lunachicks don’t have a site too. I tried to resist, but failed, so www.lunachicksoccer.org will come to life soon.
I’m curious what other ‘neat things’ some of you have done for your teams (or parents have seen done with your child’s team), both online and offline.