Returning to Play – Player Centered Youth Sports

We are all excited to be returning to play, safely and with precaution, but also so youth athletes can return to playing.

Here is a great resource to help youth players with returning to play –

A great resource to supporting motivation, for players and parents –

Somehow over time we have pushed youth players towards professionalism, in that we reflect the adult game on to the youth player. This has great implications to the learning of a player, and ultimately also participation.

Player development is a process, and this is important for a player’s motivation, confidence, and long term skill development. The long-term player development process is player-centered, where the athlete is on a pathway to accomplishing either a skill (a process goal), or individual improvement, i.e., bettering current level of play (performance goal). These goals greatly effect confidence and motivation in a player and supports the players decision making through empowerment of being in control of the process/performance goal.

We are too quick though to reflect the adult game on to the youth player, where we judge and evaluate a player on an outcome (winning a game). These outcome goals are short term and are not within the control of the individual. These goals create a heightened level of stress for the player, and ultimately anxiety and decreased confidence. We see a dropout rate in youth sports of 73% by age 14!

Support your child’s return to play and focus on the process and performance goals of the individual to support their long-term development, and psychosocial needs in growing confidence and independence through empowering the player.

Referee Course

Becoming a referee is a great way to give back to the sport, help support the youth game, and make some extra money over the weekend.

If you know anyone that wants to become a referee please send them this link to an online class.

You may send out the link that is associated with your course in this document.

The fee is $75 for referees and an additional $30 for a background check for adults.

The digital field session links are in the course details.

All assignments must be completed before attending the digital field session.

Laws of the Game

We are not quite there yet to return to competition, but we are not far away.

Each year IFAB release an update of laws of the game, and any new laws. Check out the following link to a presentation of the most recent changes to the laws.