Information for Coaches

NCYSA currently has 3 programs available to our members.  Recreational Soccer, Select Soccer, and U9 Academy.  This purpose of this page is to help the Recreational Coach get off to a good start.  Thank you for volunteering. NCYSA wouldn’t be nearly as successful without people like you. Don’t worry if you don’t have any experience–it only takes enthusiasm and a desire to make a difference in the lives of children.

Step 1 – Getting Started

  • NCYSA strongly encourages that all Rec Coaches and Assistants attend the USSF Youth Module Course.  This five hour course is free to all members and is typically held on a Saturday or Sunday.
  • Attend the Pre-Season Coaches meeting.  You will receive your team packet, choose practice times, learn about available resources, NCYSA rules, etc.


Step 2 – The Parent Meeting

  • Once you have received your team roster, contact all parents by phone and invite them to join you for a short meeting. A good place to hold the meeting is at the soccer concessions stand pavilion. As you call to invite the parents to your meeting, be sure to ask them for permission to put their phone number and address on a contact sheet.
  • Prepare a contact information sheet with the names of all team members and their parents with corresponding addresses and phone numbers.
  • Prepare a parent information sheet and include the following information:
    • Information about you (with your phone numbers), including why you want to coach the team.
    • Information about your assistant coach, if you already have a volunteer. If you don’t have one, ask one of the other parents to volunteer. They will need to fill out a coaching application and background check as well.
    • Discuss your expectations for the team, your focus and objectives. Stress the learning, team building and enjoyment aspects of the game rather than competition and winning.
    • Practice days and field(s) location.
    • Equipment to bring to practices (ball, shin guards, water). Note: Explain to parents who are new to soccer that the socks must cover shin guards completely.
    • Schedule of games and picture day (if known).
    • Distribute and discuss the NCYSA Code of Conduct for parents and coaches.


  • Discuss the kinds of snacks you’d like parents to bring on game days. Usually each family will be assigned a particular day to bring snacks for the entire team. The schedule can be worked out once you have the game schedule available.
  • Stress the need to have at least one other parent at each practice in case of injury or the need to escort a child to the bathroom.
  • Discuss what should be done if a parent doesn’t pick-up their child at the end of practice. In order to protect both players and coaches, parents should make every attempt to be punctual when picking-up their child from practice.  Suggest that another parent stay until all of the children are picked up.  You should never be left alone with a child.
  • Although we all wish for harmony among the players and parents, you need to be willing to take a parent aside and discuss privately his or her behavior. Sometimes you can address parents as a group, particularly if several have been yelling coaching instructions to their children during a game, but occasionally you will have a parent who is just a tad too aggressive or belligerent toward players and/or the referee. NCYSA stresses sportsmanship and enjoyment for all players and their families, and the Board is unwilling to compromise those principles. If you need advice or assistance, contact your Age Group Commissioner.


Step 3 – Practice

  • Always prepare a list of drills and skills you wish to accomplish during practice.  A plethora of quality lessons are available at   In order to have a successful practice, this step can not be skipped.
  • Check the children to make sure their shoes are tied and jewelry or earrings are removed before starting practice.
  • Your practice should be modified to fit your age group and needs of the players. In most cases, you’ll always want to start with warm-ups and stretches, but the skills, small sided practice and scrimmage can be adapted to fit the objectives of your practice.
  • Try to close each session with a brief discussion of a rule or skill concept so that the children have the opportunity to discuss and ask questions.
  • Take the opportunity at the end of practice to talk to parents about an upcoming game or tournament, or perhaps a drill they can practice with their child at home.


Available Resources


U.S. Soccer Coaching Curriculum


The presentation of the U.S. Soccer coaching curriculum is another major step in the implementation of the framework developed by the Player Development Task Force, which was created in 2006 to review all aspects of player development in the United States and recommend a course of action.

The curriculum is designed to improve development of players in the organized player base in the United States, concentrating on  creating more organized, age-appropriate training sessions, developing coaching practices and creating an environment that is fun for the players.

The curriculum builds on the successful launch and growth of the U.S. Soccer Development Academy. Initiated in the fall of 2007 after a detailed review of player development systems in the U.S. and across the world, the Development Academy has improved the training environment; provided relevant, high-level matches on a consistent basis; increased the level and efficiency of scouting for the national teams and provided players, coaches and referees with more structured programming.

Best Practices

U.S. Soccer’s Coaching Education Department has released a new publication designed to give youth and junior level soccer coaches in the United States a set of fundamental tools to help open up the game of soccer to young players in ways that celebrate the sport’s spontaneous qualities. The 70-page “Best Practices for Coaching Soccer in the United States” coaching book serves as the sport’s definitive new player development guidelines and is available now as a free download.


Success In Soccer


Your Ultimate Coaching Education Resource!

  • Soccer coaching magazine filled with innovative soccer training drills and exercises
  • Access to the Online Subscriber Benefits
  • Books, DVDs, Soccer software
  • Soccer coaching accessories, training and field equipment