One of the biggest things I’ve learned from eight years of coaching soccer around the world is that the key to development is allowing players to organically learn the game. I think we’ve gotten into a situation over the years where too much over-coaching is going on. Our role as a coach is to guide. We can’t teach kids everything, but we can guide and create a fun learning environment for players. This will teach them to not only love the game now, but also to continue to love it in twenty years. The game alone is the greatest teacher.
The hardest thing as a coach, and I know this from personal experience, is to not let your ego get in the way of development. Constantly barking at players to do certain things on the field doesn’t get the long term results you are after. Players don’t learn from being told what to do at every step while they are on the field. That would be the same as just controlling players in a video game. They learn from making mistakes. The team who usually makes the least tends to win.
It’s ok to make mistakes.
As our friends at Online Soccer Academy say, when a player makes a mistake, “React positive!” They’ve just learned something!
If a player makes a mistake that leads to a goal you have to see that as a learning experience. They will learn and correct accordingly, understanding that a consequence resulted in that mistake. It’s how we learn many of our skills, not only in sports, but in life. Coaches can guide afterwards and re-correct, but that situation alone should never be over-coached in the moment.
Parents should recognize the silence of a coach isn’t always a bad thing. He/she is allowing the players to learn the game in an environment that is conducive to self-exploration and learning in a natural way by playing the game. Organized sports were never a big factor for learning the game in the 70s, 80s and 90s. Learning came from playing every minute of the day and watching the game on TV. Learning the game in an organic way is fantastic not only for the here and now but for the long term. It builds players who are creative and expressive while out on the field.
If you make it fun now, they will love the game forever.
The DC chapter of America Scores is a non-profit organization which serves kids in need through programs that build confidence and skills to succeed on the playing field, in the classroom, and in life. Through a unique combination of soccer, poetry/spoken word, and service-learning, the organization helps over 2,200 kids in 55 schools develop into healthy teens and young adults.
The evening, which took place at the Hyphen Galley in DC, was well attended by members of DC United, DC SCORES, and friends and family of artists John Brendan Guinan and DC United’s Head Coach, Ben Olsen. Both artists graciously donated several pieces of artwork, with proceeds going toward DC SCORES in anticipation of contributing to a meaningful difference in thousands of kids’ lives.
Several DC SCORES members performed original poetry for the crowd in between mingling with the artists, DC United players, browsing works of art and enjoying the delicious food donated by Mindful Restaurant Group. It was truly an amazing evening bringing two seemingly uncommon worlds together: Soccer and Art.
Demosphere is extremely proud to be a supporter of DC SCORES to help the local community in support of the development of our youth through soccer, poetry, leadership and more. We encourage you to consider contributing to the organization, or to a similar affiliate in your area. If you have a similar organization in your area that you’d like to share, please post your comments below.
Part of Demosphere’s mission involves providing continuous support of the youth sports community, which we have been contributing since our beginning almost 27 years ago. Our goal in this realm is to help build community connections by sharing ideas and investing in the leaders of tomorrow.
Like many of our customers, St. Louis Scott Gallagher (SLSG) is feeling both a sense of excitement as well as the healthy bit of stress that goes along with preparing for the opening of a new season. The 2017-18 season is upon us and Demosphere is firing on all cylinders to help our clients kick it into high gear!
Senior Account Manager, Camille Cheatwood, recently visited the SLSG team and their amazing facility for a working session to review registration set-up of their club and team invitation programs for both their Missouri and Illinois locations. Managing an organization this large takes a great team, a lot of coordination, and a top-notch system to handle it all – the partnership between SLSG and Demosphere really hits the mark!
The SLSG team previously launched Demosphere’s integrated online registration system for some of their camps and ancillary programs. This recent working session focused on some of the more in-depth components of the system for their larger programs including:
Cheatwood and the SLSG group then discussed solutions for team formation using auto-roster tools via the team invitation process, as well as drag and drop team building with Demosphere’s powerful registration management solution.
Demosphere is really excited about our partnership with St. Louis Scott Gallagher and the opportunity to help them #GetIntegrated to streamline their administrative workflow so they can focus on what they do best: create and grow programs that develop our youth through sport.
Contact us today to find out how we can help your youth sports organization do the same!
Demosphere’s Senior Account Manager, Camille Cheatwood, recently made the trip to beautiful Utah to meet with the Copper Mountain Soccer (CMS) team to discuss an expansion of our partnership. Our enhanced solutions will include creation of a new youth soccer website to help in their re-branding efforts to their newly re-envisioned Copper Mountain Rec Soccer name.
While in Utah, Cheatwood met with the CMS team for a working session to review best practices relative to our current partnership which includes online player registration and league scheduling tools. This streamlined solution is vital to the success of their organization, and with the addition of a new and improved website, Demosphere plans to help CMS reach their goal of being a premier, fully integrated, youth soccer club.
Demosphere is proud to support the efforts of Copper Mountain Soccer in achieving their mission to provide a place where all children have an opportunity to learn the sport of soccer and to have fun doing it. Demosphere’s goal is to provide leading-edge, integrated technology solutions to youth sports organizations to allow partners to focus more on what matters most: creating programs that help grow and develop our youth through sport.
If you’re interested to learn more about what Demosphere can do to help your organization #GetIntegrated, contact us today!
Demosphere’s own Dannelle Lewandowski is no stranger to the coaching world. This year, she elevated her resume by becoming a girls ODP coach in the state of Georgia. So when she heard about Julie Foudy’s coaching seminar titled “Coaching Females Successfully: Perspective of a World Class Player”, Dannelle jumped at the opportunity to attend.
Foudy shared stories about her own personal journey as a world class player (former USA Women’s Soccer Team captain, two-time Olympic Gold Medalist and two-time World Cup Champion), as well as her perspective on the evolution of soccer in the United States. Julie also outlined best strategies for coaching female players and the importance of not only teaching the sport, but developing the character and leadership qualities of the individual as well.
Dannelle’s biggest take away from Julie’s discussion was that, “being a soccer coach is so much more than teaching someone about how to kick the soccer ball. A coach is given the opportunity and privilege to positively impact young players’ character development. These character traits will be used for the rest of their lives and soccer is a path to help provide these life lessons.”
Part of Julie’s mission includes the creation of the Julie Foudy Sports Leadership Academy, which is a residential sports academy geared toward girls ages 12-18. The academy focuses on sport (soccer or lacrosse), but perhaps more importantly, on leadership. The philosophy is to expose students to Julie’s great passion: the concept of not just being a great leader on the field but a leader in life. This year, the JFSLA is adding a day student option for girls ages 9-12 in three cities around the country.
We’re excited about the work Julie is doing to grow and develop the youth sports community and we encourage you to check out her program and share with your members!