We signed Brody up for Youth Soccer through PARA. The first practice was yesterday evening at 5:45 at Sokol Park North. I was a bit intimidated going in as I know NOTHING about soccer.

The coaches did a magnificent job keeping the U5 Lions in line. I was amazed at how quickly they all seemed to grasp the instructions. They started with some simple drills and exercises. I learned a little too. The word "dribble" has always been associated with basketball to me. In soccer though, it apparently means to kick the ball.

I did a little research this morning to familiarize myself with a few of the "rules". According to a site I found, kids-play-soccer.com there are a few Milestones for 4-5 y/o players:

Dribbling - Children this age should be able to comprehend the overall game and be able to comfortably dribble with inside feet. They should be touching the ball at least 60 times within 15-25 minutes when practicing. They should be able to answer these two key questions.

What controls the ball in soccer? answer-THE BODY

First step in soccer to everything is? answer - CONTROL

You can introduce the simple turn of cut-in. What does the work? Body!

second turn to introduce is walk over turn. This turn forces them to maneuver their body over the ball. This sets a great foundation for what to come in technical development.

Defending- At this age they should be able to grasp that taking the ball away from the other team is part of the rules. they should be able to understand to take the ball away they need to get in front of them (first step of defending) also called getting goal side.
Match Play- they can tell you how many teams,goals, and balls soccer is played with. Understand they don't chase or take a ball away from their team. Although, Bunch ball may be more frequent than not they are able to play real soccer.
EXTRA- passing is introduced and understood but only few really grasp and use passing as a tool during real soccer. Small sided games gets them ready and already teaches them to create space. Play small sided games rule at this age!

If you need to learn more like me, you can check out this site too. Soccer-for-parents.com

Our next practice is Thursday evening. With the weather cooling off, I look forward to being on the field watching the kids play and I hope I learn a little more about the game. I plan on reading up a bit more in the mean time.