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Member Since 10 Jun 2008
Offline Last Active Apr 13 2009 12:56 PM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Mercy Rule

09 March 2009 - 05:55 AM

With the way the age brackets are set up covering 3 years youíre always going to have teams at the upper end of the age bracket, teams at the bottom of the age bracket and teams somewhere in the middle.
The older teams are almost always going to have a physical competitive edge.

The guy who runs our league does an excellent job of ensuring each team has a good cross section of ages and sexes. For instance, my roster for this spring has 12 players (my only beef - WAY too many players for 5v5), with four each of 10, 11 and 12 y/o's.

IMO, the biggest thing leagues need to prevent is allowing team builders to keep a team together that dominates their division. Let them do it one year, and if they run away with it, you break the team up. Simple as that, I think. Restricting coaches to only being able to request 2-3 players would also help. A competitive league/division is best for EVERYONE involved. When you have a team consistenly winning by 15-20 points it isn't good for any of the players athletically speaking.

In Topic: Mercy Rule

05 March 2009 - 07:51 AM

Football lasts 4 quarters---let the kids play the game. Coaches should police themselves when it comes to running up the score. If you find a coach who repeatedly does this, even if he says "I cannot help it", get rid of him.

Problem solved, in my opinion.

You're voted commissioner for life! :) Seriously, this is all it takes. We've probably had this discussion on here before, but I do NOT believe that coaches can't do things to avoid running scores up. Only step I would insert into the above "policy" would be to break up his team if it is truly stacked. Even though I'm one who takes advantage of coaches being allowed to register an entire team, assuming all ages in the division are represented, I would be fine with coaches only being able to have 2-3 players preassigned, and the rest placed at random.

As to OP, we don't have a mercy rule. I don't believe in it, except as a matter of my personal coaching philosophy, which is to always approach every game as if my son/daughter were on the other team. As part of that, I would never want them to be humiliated either by getting blown out, or being "given" anything either.


In Topic: Coaching By Example

27 February 2009 - 06:42 AM

Some of the better youth coaches I see are very out of shape. My youngest brother played Pop Warner for a couple of guys who were both 100+ overweight and they were undefeated.

I don't think it HAS to hurt a coach being adverse to fitness, I just think public perception of a coach that is wheezing from walking is that he's not very athletic. But, you're right, many coaches don't look like they could play the sport if their life depends on it, but they might be pretty good coaches. I would counter that with saying part of being a coach is setting an example for kids to look up to by showing a lifetime commitment to excercise is the reason we get kids into sports.

Here is something funny: I'm in pretty good shape, I work out and run regularly. I can do 5k's in under 23 minutes, not lightning but in decent shape. During the season I decided to challenge the kids during some of the sprints and endurance related drills I was making them do. It turns out it was a lot harder than it looked! I was breathing so heavily I wasn't able to talk much so I told them all to take a water break. After that I had a lot more respect for what I was challenging them to do.

haha - that's a good story. I'm same way, but I needed a harsh lesson of running/biking/swimming for endurance does not equal full-out sprints. I don't know about you all, but everytime I walk by a field and here a fat parent yelling for their kid to "hustle out there" and "be aggressive" when it's 90degrees, I want to tell them to get off their butts and see if they can sprint the length of the field even 2x. Kids vs. parents used to be a "joke" when they were 8 y/o, but you don't get as many parent volunteers as they get 11-12 and up because the parents are sucking wind after 3 minutes!


In Topic: How Do You Come Up With Your Team Names?

27 February 2009 - 06:29 AM

I'm curious how you all choose your team names.

We play NFL Flag, so we're limited to 32 names. Since I'm an Eagles fan, I figured it was one way I could finally get them a Super Bowl! :)

In Topic: Coaching By Example

26 February 2009 - 07:40 AM

I think we do have a responsibility to lead these kids by example. Iím not personally overweight (6í2Ē, 190 lbs), but I rarely work-out and know I need to improve my fitness. If I got anything out of that clinic session, itís that I better be able to execute any of the drills Iím asking my kids to do without having to call 911. :)

I hope this topic doesnít offend anyone. I know, as youth coaches, we all make huge time commitments and sacrifices to better the lives of kids.

Just about every coaching course I've taken (admittedly mostly soccer), and at every level, the instructor has made the point several times that coaches need to make effort at physical fitness, even though they don't need to be able to run marathons or play their sport at a high level. I don't think you necessarily need to perform all the skills that you're getting your kids to learn, but you need to be able to describe them and get another player to demo them. But, a coach that spends some of his/her time on fitness, looks the part at practice and on game day, and is prepared, will be taken much more seriously than one who is wheezing after 8 steps and doesn't have his/her practice/game planned out.

A bonus to coaches participating in fitness, is that your players get to see that yes, games are a lot of fun, but in order to get better there will be a time as they get older when you have to do fitness work outside of practice on your own. I do triathlons (I'm not great at them - I just try to finish and not die), and I'm constantly talking with my players about how much time I put in at 0500 at the pool so that come race day I can do the whole race. Not that I expect 10 y/o's to run 3 miles a day, but letting them know that as they get older, the fitness side of the game becomes more their responsibility, especially in high school and beyond.

Personally, one of my goals as a coach is to get kids to love the sport to the extent that they play it on their own time and will enjoy physical activity so much that they'll do it for the rest of their lives. I'd like to have kids that are playing flag football in college and beyond, or playing indoor soccer in an over-40 league when they get older. I think when kids see a coach that enjoys playing the sport they're coaching, that enthusiasm is contagious.

One HUGE recommendation for those of you that are wound a bit tighter than others (like me). I try and make sure to always do a workout the morning of gameday (which is just about every Saturday & Sunday), for at least 30 minutes. A run, bike, swim, etc. Something that is tiring, but allows your body to shed some stress. It's worked wonders for me, especially in that I don't let the small things bother me as much during games (ref no-calls, parents, etc.).