What to expect to do in practice?
We love teaching the kids real soccer. When it comes to “rec” soccer, we believe we are the only rec organization in Charlotte who does not depend on parent volunteer coaches, whose skills/knowledge in soccer could vary greatly. Instead, at Hope, we hire young soccer players and train them how to coach the beautiful game using age appropriate drills designed to teach possession, passing, strategic field orientation, defending individually, defending as a team, and of course having fun while doing it.
Some of these drills which you will see during practice include:
Green Light/Red Light: On green light, players take touches on the ball, lift their heads up and make sure they’re dribling away from traffice. On red light, they stop, and change direction when green light is called. Coaches can implement new rules and games to make this drill fun with additional colors, which they can choose or ask the children to pick an activing on a new color.
Island Hoping: 4 separate ‘safe areas’ where players start with the ball. The goal is to make it to another safe area without getting tagged by 2 defenders in the middle. If you get tagged, you join the defenders until everyone is a defender.
River Monster: A build up on green/red light, players are encouraged to be in control of their dribling and navigate around coaches who are trying to tag them and prevent them from getting from one sideline to the other.
Frozen: Though signing the disney classic will not be encouraged (haha) as we’ve all heard it a few times, the box will have 2 defenders in it wearing pennies. Players with ball inside will keep possesion of the ball and drible around the defenders who have the power to freeze you. If frozen, you have to perform a task to get unfrozen.
Capture The Flag: A spin on the game, but with soccer balls. Includes team work, strategy and making decisions about what is the most important thing to do at a specific time. Time is limited to determine winner.
Shielding: A defensive drill that will be demonstrated by coaches.
Passing Gates: Players are divided in teams of 2 and race around a marked area trying to pass the ball between the gates. Time is limited. Team with most passes wins.
Duck Tails: Taking a play from flag football to encourage players to lift up their heads and dribble away from pressure looking for the open space on the field.
Around the World: In a circle set with cones players watch the coach demonstrate an individual drill that they are to do between the cones. Focuses on individual footwork.
2v2 defensive drill – sidelines
Numbers: Coaches call out how many players per team jump on the field in a scrimmage like setting.
At each practice we also share our faith in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who died on the cross for our sins and his loving sacrifice requires our acceptance, belief and faith in him. When Jesus walked this earth, he did not spend a lot of time in churches. Instead he walked with the people and told them about the Kingdom of Heaven at multiple places, such as the marketplace, a social event, etc. We see the soccer field as a great place to share about Jesuss and share a Bible verse during devo time at the end of each practice. We won’t force anyone to participate if they wish not to hear this devo. We ask that you quietly leave when you see the teams get together for their devo.