More than a year ago, I volunteered my wife and I to coach my sons soccer team. We’d never done it before. We didn’t know the kids, the families, or the rules about getting the best uniforms. So in essence, we were rookies and we had a team with the ugliest uniforms in the league.
But we won, and then won again, and eventually the season came to an end…today. And we didn’t lose a single game. I know you win some and you lose some, but when the kids, families, and ugly uniforms come together with a string of victories, it sure feels good.
So here’s to the champions!
My four year old has started in a beginning soccer class at the Y. They teach them basic skills for thirty minutes and then play a game for thirty. They play three on three. It is like watching an episode of three stooges. If you are lucky, they score a goal……..in the wrong net!
They tend to mentally move in and out of the game. Its not unusual to see a kid stop by a parent and get a hug. J likes to wave at us as the ball rolls by him. If one child falls, the other “stooges” do the same to act silly. The game moves at a slow pace because the ball is constantly out of bounds and/or the ref is blowing his whistle to stop the game.
At times the kids remind me of Ferdinand, the bull who was more interested in smelling flowers than being a mean bull. And then its as if a light bulb goes off for just a minute or two and someone realizes they can score a goal. And when someone scores, all the other kids come out of their trance because they hear all the families cheer.
And of course, once the game is over-its time to get ready for to go to my older sons game.
When I signed up Ry for soccer, a volunteer asked if anyone would be willing to help with coaching. Since this meant you could move up in the line, I thought why not. So I volunteered myself and my wife to be assistant coaches for u-8 soccer. The AYSO people told me I didn’t need to know or be an expert at soccer because its still about teaching kids good sportsmanship. Initially my wife reacted by shouting, “you volunteered us for what?!” I reassured her it was no big deal.
And then the emails started coming about volunteer meetings, coaching guidelines, schedules and I said to myself, “you signed us up to do what?!” I honestly don’t know squat about soccer other than kick the ball in the goal. I feel I can help of group of seven year old boys to work together. So I’ve been scowering the internet for simple games and drills to help them. If there are people reading this that have tips for a virgin coach with no idea what to do, I’d welcome the help. I’m so uncertain of myself in the role, that I offered to take the least athletic kids…in other words, the future leaders of the world. I may as well get on their good side when they’re young.