Sunday, June 14, 2015

U4/5 and U6 Practice #8 June 17/15

Hello Coaches!  I can't believe that it is the last week of soccer already and that I am writing my last blog post for you.  
Thank you ALL for making this such a FANTASTIC season.  I have truly enjoyed working with such an enthusiastic bunch.  This is one lucky group of kids to have received such great coaching all season long :)

Please note that Saturday is the Wind Up.  Please remind parents and players that the schedule is on the RYSA website

Teams will be playing 3 games, followed by awards and snacks.
U4/5 plays 9:00-9:55, followed by awards at 10:05 and snacks at 10:25.
U6 plays 9:15-10:25, followed by awards at 10:30 and snacks at 10:50.

Coaches, if you cannot be at the wind up please ensure that YOU have found someone to cover your coaching duties for that morning.  Thank you!

Now onto our last practice!  For today, pick your (and the kids) favourites from the season and execute!! :)  I have listed a brief format with some of my favourites that you can reference from prior posts if you are stuck.  The number in brackets is the week's # post where you can find details if you can't quite remember the specifics.  And, whatever you do, HAVE FUN :)

A Tag Game - Freeze Tag (1), Donkey Tails (5), Blob Tag (6)
Obstacle Course
Indy 500 (1) or Red Light/Green Light (1) or Dribble Through the Jungle (2)
Clean Your Messy Room (2) or Hit the Coach (4)
Swamps and Crocs (4) or Sleeping Bear (6)
Shark (1) or Shark Attack (6)
Game time at 4:35 pm

A Tag Game - same as U4/5 above
Obstacle Course (could be ran as a relay race) or Musical Balls/Coach Says (5)
Clean Your Room (2) or PacMan (4) or Hit the Coach (4)
Turn and Burn (6) or Triangle Challenge (6)
Shark (1) or Shark Attack (6)
Numbers Game with 1 Net (4) or Chain Soccer (2)
Game time at 5:40 pm.  I will be evaluating players for reference as they move up into U8 next year, so will be around to your teams at this time with some questions for you.

Thank you again for giving up your time to these kids and the beautiful game. I hope the experience has been a positive one for you.  ANY feedback, good, bad or otherwise, is appreciated so that we can make improvements to the program for next year.  You can send this to me via email at, or via the RYSA Feedback Form

U8/10/13 week 8 - the finale!

Well, here we are the final week of soccer!  We can not extend our thanks enough to all of you for making the season a fantastic success up to this point.  We hope you have had fun and that you can dig out your enthusiasm and love of soccer for one more week!

All the head coaches are doing or finishing up player evaluations (to help make teams for next year), please assist them as needed especially if players are away etc. - thanks!

Last week I posted practice #8, so you should be hitting this now if you didn't hit it last week.  Here is the link to the wind up schedule for Saturday.  If you could hand in your gear at wind up, that would be very much appreciated.

We are always trying to make soccer better in Revelstoke, if you have feedback, good, bad, constructive, PLEASE share this with us either verbally or via email: or on the feedback form at

We have enjoyed working with you this season!
High fives all around!
Kim, Rory & Kendra

Sunday, June 7, 2015

U4/5 Crazy Hair Day & Stations June 10/15

Its Crazy Hair Day!  Time to get out those wigs and hairspray and make yourself a crazy hair-do :)

STATIONS:  Teams 1-7 will rotate clockwise around their stations on the road side of the field and teams 8-14 will rotate clockwise around their stations on the opposite end.  This means that after #7 you move to #1, and after #14 you move to #8.  The horn will go at 4:00 to start as usual, and then every 6-ish minutes to change stations.   As the first station is your own, I have allotted more time here to allow you to get your team organized or do a little warmup first (pick a tag game).  The first switch will happen at 4:09, and every 6 minutes after that.  Note that 6 minutes isn't very long, so when the team arrives get them going quickly!  Remember that one coach stays at your number to run the station and the other coach (or a parent) can help move the group from station to station.  There are no scheduled games this week.

Pirate Ship  -  #1 Liliane / Bryan  &  #12 John / Lisa
Grid is a Pirate Ship, so talk like a pirate and get them excited.
You are the captain, here are the commands for calls/skills.  Introduce them 2 at a time and have the players perform them a couple of times, and then introduce 2 more.

"Captain's coming!" = players stop dribbling and put their foot on the ball and salute you

"Scrub the decks!" = players roll the ball backwards and forwards using the bottom of their foot; use both feet!

"Climb the rigging!" = players perform toe taps on the ball and pretend to climb with the hands

"Man overboard!" = players dribble to the edge of the ship (grid), place their foot on the ball and their hand on their forehead as if they are looking for somebody; they can then continue dribbling when you tell them to go again

"Fire the cannon!" = players dribble to the edge and kick their ball as far as they can; once all the balls have been kicked, the players can retrieve their soccer ball and carry on dribbling.

"Seagulls are coming" = you pretend to be a seagull who wants to eat their soccer ball; the kids on hearing this command will drop to the ground quickly and protect their ball with their body and hands. You should run around the ship with your arms out like a bird until you tell them to carry on dribbling

Soccer Bowling  -  #2 Shendra  &  #13 Blair / Ben
Exactly like it suggests, and the video makes it self explanatory!
Extra equipment will be available to set up more "lanes" so that you do not have a lineup.  Could have parents challenge their child to see who can knock more soccerballs over.  

Shark Attack  -  #3 Pat / Christy  &  #14 Margo / Kurt
Play in a 20 x 20 grid.  Mark each corner with different coloured cones (look in the cart for more colours, could also use pinnies if there are not enough cones).  Players are the "fish" and are dribbling in the grid, while coaches or parents are the sharks who are trying to win ball the from them.  Players perform toe touches or storks if the shark attack is successful. To give players an opportunity to work on their offensive skills, when coach yells a specific colour,  players must dribble to that coloured corner whilst trying to get past the sharks.

Don't Crash the Car  -  #4 Tyler / Christi / Jaana  &  #8 Simone / Jenny
Red Light, Green Light made fun....check out all the variations!

Topple Me Coconuts  -  #5 Sheena / Shawna / Wyatt  &  #9 Stephanie / Amy 
(See Active Start coach resources Week #2)
Outline your grid with lots of cones and place balls on top like coconuts.  (There will be extra balls and cones for you to use in the wagons for this game)
Split players into 2 teams and have them line-up on opposite sides of the grid.
Players alternate making passes/shots to try and knock the ball off of a cone.
If a player is successful they can go and retrieve both balls and bring them back to their side. Encourage celebrations!

Obstacle Course  -  #6 Jill / Anna / Megan  &  #10 Keri / Travis
I will bring out hurdles, ladders, hoops and cones in the wagon. You just have to set up a fun obstacle course!  You could do a round with balls and a round without, with passing sections where they can't dribble.  Be creative!  Don't forget to demo what you want the kids to do each round.

Pirate Pete  -  #7 Amanda / Whitney  &  #11 Roy / Kyle
You will need to get the parents to play for this station. Divide the players (with their parent) into two teams. Put one team in pinnies.  Player and parent will be partners who are passing the ball to each other in a line to create a "channel".
One team has to run through the channel to get to the treasure (soccerballs).  I will bring out extra soccer balls for you to use in addition to your own.
The other team is kicking/passing across the channel, trying to hit the other team with the ball (below the knee) as they run through.
If players get struck by the ball they have to go back and try again.
When players get to the treasure they bring a piece back to their ship (they can carry or dribble the ball depending on their level).
Players change roles after a set time. Count the pieces of treasure that each team collects.
To make it easier, players can roll the ball rather than kick it.

U6 Crazy Hair Day & Stations June 10/15

Its Crazy Hair Day!  Time to get out those wigs and hairspray and make yourself a crazy hair-do :)

Stations this week, we will move clockwise.  Stations for the first 42 minutes and then move to games as usual.  Horn will go at 5pm and then every 7 minutes after that.  Have fun!

Shark  -  Cindy / Callum
Mark out a grid.  Players are the "fish" and line up on one end of the grid with soccer balls.  Coach is the "shark" and is in the centre of the grid.  When coach calls out "Shark!" players try to get to the other side without getting tagged by the shark.  If player is tagged by a shark, they become a shark too.  Another version to play is that players are dribbling around in the grid and they must perform 5 toe taps or 5 tick-tocks if the shark gets their ball.  My favourite way to play is knockout style though.  The shark is trying to kick player's balls out of the grid, and when this happens they become a shark too and also kick other player's balls out of the grid. The game ends when only one player is left with a ball and this player gets to be the shark for the next game.

Moving Goal  -  Joel / Amy
Play in a slightly larger grid than you normally would.  Coaches will hold a pinnie between them as a crossbar (there will be larger adult-sized ones in the wagon for this, grab 2 for your team) and move as the goal around the grid. Alternate the pace at which you move from time-to-time.   Players try to score on the moving goal.  Play the activity with each player having a ball, in pairs or split them into 2 teams.  If playing as teams, then use one ball and the team in possession tries to score and the other team defends until they can get the ball.
Could have a couple of "moving goals" if you have willing parents.

Numbers Game  -  Brock / Tayla
Set up a small grid with goals at each end.  Separate players into 2 teams lined up at each end near the goal.  Place yourself at the centreline with a stash of balls.  Number players 1,2,3,4,5 etc. Call out a number. That numbered player on each team must race into the field where the ball is played. Players are trying to score if they have the ball or get the ball if they are not the first one to get it.  Encourage celebrations after a goal!  Progress to 2 or 3 players and/or add a goalkeeper depending on your numbers.  Alternate version is to call out names of players (if you happen to know them) to switch up the challenging pairs.  If numbers are low, ask the parents to play as the opposing number for their child.

Relay/Obstacle Course  -  Pat / Jennifer
I think the kids are ready for a challenge to take on each other relay-style.  I will bring out extra equipment in the wagon for you to create an obstacle course / relay course.  Try to incorporate a pass or a shot on net if you can.

Parents vs Kids  -  Shawn / Gavin
Set up your grid with 4-6 goals around the outside.  Have a parents vs kids match to see who can score the most goals in 1 minute.  All the kids are in goal with parents shooting first, then switch.  Shots must be taken on a different goal each time.

Red Light, Green Light and Other Stuff  -  Josie / Brodie
Players move around the grid dribbling the ball – when coach shouts red light players stop. Green light players go. Go speeding – players go faster. Crash - players dive on their ball.  Be creative, yellow light slow down etc... Can incorporate calls from last week's "Don't Crash the Car" as well.

U8 practice #8

Focus:  passing, possession and spreading out

warm up:

guard the castle game

GAME:  alley soccer
create an alley on each side of the field where a player plays (who is neutral, plays for both teams, must play ball back to team who played them the ball, can not defend the alley) and each team must play the ball to the alley before attempting to score.  The goal is to spread out.

Technical session:

Number passing and move.
Each player gets a number.  1 passes to 2, 2 passes to three etc....after you pass the ball you move to a new space in the grid, getting ready to call to player you receive from.

Pig in the middle, play with one or two pigs, trying to keep ball moving and get players moving.  Might  have players have to try to stay on outside of grid/circle and after you pass the ball you must find a new spot.  If one of the pigs (defenders) touches/gets the ball then they move to the outside and person who made mistake goes into the middle.

Two teams play in two grids next to each other.  Each team has a ball and tries to pass it around.  Each team sends one defender to the other side to try and win the ball and bring it back to other side.  You can send one defender for each ball in oppositions grid, so if they have both balls, you send two defenders.  (you will need to have an adult in each grid to help coordinate).

3v1 two grid
Two grids, 3 in each grid, coach with balls on side in centre, two defenders standing by coach.  Coach plays ball to one grid and then send in a defender the colour of the players in the other grid, if the defender gets it they pass it to the other grid and go back to coach who in the mean time sends in other defender from first team.

possession and spacial awareness game.  Play with two players per side in the middle not three.

GAME: two teams, one ball, normal rules!

U10 practice #8

Focus:  working on possession and movement off the ball

Warm up:
part 1:  passing and timing of pass drill

part 2: catch your man drill

play 4 touch with alleys
must play into the alley on outside before team can attempt to score

Technical session:

4v2 with twist

4 corner possession game *just play with one ball

spacial awareness: working on getting open and finding your man

GAME:  two teams, one ball, regular rules of soccer!

U13 practice #8

Focus this week is possession and off ball movement.   Pick one and run with it, pick a couple, pick none and choose your own practice.  Perhaps there is something specific you would like to work on.

Warm up:
part 1:  working on ball control & touch
(avoid the heading portion)

part 2: dribbling with moves warm up
just pick a couple of aspects of this to build on and practice from last week

part 3: triangle game:

play 3 or 4 touch and work on width and depth
add alleys (play alley soccer) on the side to force width, having to play/pass into alley before attempting to score.

technical drills:

spacial awareness: working on getting open and finding your man

movement off the ball:
two teams playing in grid, two balls, one per team pass and move.  The session moves to using more than one ball per team to increase awareness and off ball runs.

attacking overloads:

4 corner possession game 

to work on possession and combination plays:

GAME:  two teams one ball and play