Player Development

 Welcome

This section contains information to assist coaches in the development of their players as individuals and as teams.  There is a tremendous amount of information available to coaches presented as courses, books, videos, and other resources.  There are also practice sessions prepared from the experiences of other coaches.  The objective of this section and the links contained within it is to quickly connect you with the available materials for the development of your team.The following information for player development is contained within this section:

Courses

If you have already read the "Classes" information within the coaching section you will know that there is a variety of coaching classes available to assist you in the development of your own coaching skills.  Now view this from a different angle.  If coaching is really designed to assist you in the development of your players, then these courses are the foundation of good coaching techniques.  They will teach you how to efficiently use time and energy in the development of your players and your team.  With this in mind, let's review the primary belief of the Mass Youth Soccer Organization.

Mass Youth Soccer believes that "the game is the greatest teacher" and that children will get better at soccer by playing, playing and more playing.  We also believe that well-trained, resourceful coaches will enhance a child's enjoyment of this beautiful sport.  To that end we have designed a series of coaching courses, each leading to a certificate or license that emphasizes proper coaching techniques.

From a player development viewpoint, completion of the courses offered through the Mass Youth Soccer Organization will provide a richer, more consistent experience for both players and coaches.  The end result will be a better developed team and more rewarding experience for players, parents, and coaches.

Mass Youth Soccer offers three courses that build the foundations for coaching up through the U14 teams.  The courses build upon each other and start with "G" course and finish with the "E" course.  There are no performance or written tests and coaches with and without soccer playing experience are encouraged to take these courses.

Medfield Soccer believes strongly enough in these courses that upon completion of a course you will be reimbursed for your course entry fee.

The G Course
MANDATORY TO COMPLETE before taking another license course.
This beginning course for coaches teaches about both coaching organization and theory.  The intention of the G course it to help you to become a more resourceful and confident "activity leader"-to combine your enthusiasm and commitment to children with the basic theory and practical exercises that the course provides.  The course will cover teaching and correcting dribbling, passing, and shooting technique as well as particular characteristics of U6 and U8 players.


The F Course
A more ambitious introductory course for novice coaches or those with some experience. Designed primarily for coaches of U8, U10, or U12 teams. The intention in the F course is to help you to become a more resourceful and confident "activity leader" - to combine your enthusiasm and commitment to children with the basic theory and practical exercises that we'll provide.  

The E Course
This course combines soccer theory and practice. During the course, each participant will have the opportunity to lead a short coaching session, with constructive feedback from the instructor. Designed primarily for experienced coaches of U10, U12, and U14 teams. 

Additional courses are designed for coaches that want to pursue coaching at the high school or beyond level or are considering coaching as a potential career opportunity.  These courses have both minimum performance and written test requirements.  In addition, progression through the advanced coaching courses will require a significant amount of time over weekends or away from home to a national training center.

The first of these courses is the "D" course.

The D Course
A rigorous course for experienced coaches of U12, U14, or U16 club or town teams, or of high school teams.  Three or four years experience coaching older players is recommended.  Note:  This course is 36 hours long and requires successful completion of both performance and written exams.

Additional Information on the coaching courses can be found at the following link: Coaching Courses


The Mass Youth Soccer Statewide U6-U12 Curriculum

This is an excellent primer for coaches looking for a standardized coaching curriculum for youth soccer.  The document is broken out by age groups with an overview of the characteristics of the players and recommendations fo activities to develop the players.  Mass Youth Soccer Statewide U6-U12 Curriculum


Practice Sessions

Practice sessions are actual sessions used by the Mass Youth Soccer coaches.  They are made avaiable to all coaches and stored in the library of the Mass Youth Soccer web site.  Practice sessions are organized in the following age groups:

U6 Practice Sessions
U8 Practice Sessions
U10 Practice Sessions
U12 Practice Sessions
U14-U18 Practice Sessions
Special Games & Activities

The Practice Sessions are categorized by theme within each age group.  Each session is an age appropriate, complete practice session.

Age groups are designated in even years (i.e. U6, U8, U10, etc.) but the sessions are also appropriate for the odd year preceding the age group listed.  For example, U6 practice sessions are appropriate for U5 players; U8 practice sessions are appropriate for U7 players; etc.

If you believe that your players need more or less challenge, it is acceptable to try sessions in an older or younger age group.  But please understand that the sessions are age appropriate and have been developed to enhance the development of each player on your team.  

 

Heading Policy 
Medfield Soccer does not support heading in children on U12 teams and under.  For U13-14 teams, heading may be introduced but we do not advocate any repetitive practice sessions of heading the ball.  

 

 Player Development Guidelines

 Medfield Youth Soccer is dedicated to providing all children in the town of Medfield a place to play soccer. Our primary focus is on player development, having fun, and providing a safe environment. To help facilitate this, we have provided several age specific guidelines with the following purposes:

  • Establish clear and age appropriate goals and objectives so our coaches, players and parents know what we are working toward
  • Establish objectives so coaches have a common understanding of which skills players should have when they proceed to the next age group
  • Establish age appropriate priorities and focus areas in the four elements of the game (technical, tactical, psychological, and physical)
  • Ensure consistency among our programs so we’re all teaching the same way and using the same vocabulary
  • Create confident, well prepared coaches

 U7 & U8 Guidelines

 U9 & U10  Guidelines

 U11 & U12 Guidelines

 U13 & U14  Guidelines

 

Warm-up Guidelines, U7-U14

Stretching Guidelines, U7-U14

 

Coaching Resources  
Books   
Books and presentations for soccer coaches and player development are contained in the Mass Youth Soccer Library of coaching information.

Useful Links 
There are additional links to a variety of resources available to coaches.

Need More?  Contact the Soccer Board if you need additional assistance.