Recruiting coaches is a year long process. Below are time line recommendations:
Contact coaches two months prior to the start of a season.
- Confirm coaches one month prior to the start of a season.
- Ask coaches and parents at the end of the season for the next season.
Several organizations have suggested numerous ways to get coaches working with the club. One of the easiest things to do is add a section to your registration form that asks parents to volunteer. Holding parent meetings and offering coaching and parent education also present opportunities to recruit coaches. Furthermore, associations can offer incentives for parents to coach. These incentives can consist of preferred practice times and locations among other things.
It is recommended associations should hold a coaches meeting two weeks prior to the start of the season. This time allows officers to speak with coaches about the philosophy of the organization. It is also a time to hand out equipment and make sure that risk management and other forms are completed. Some associations will offer a short meeting and follow it with a coaching course. It is a great idea to see if a local restaurant would provide free or reduced food for the meeting.
Recommendations for New Coaches
- Provide mentors for new coaches
- Have new coaches in an age group train at the same time as experienced coaches, so they can combine training or at least share ideas.
- Have age group coordinators that can run some pool training sessions in the fall and then assist coaches where needed.
- Provide new coaches with materials
- USYS offers excellent and inexpensive DVDs for U6/U8 and U10/12
- Some associations provide training session plans or age appropriate activities in a manual at the start of the season
- Provide coaches with USYS coaching manuals
Coaching courses should be offered prior to the start and in the middle of each season. Recommendations suggest offering courses three weeks prior to the first practice. These courses will not only help coaches with their practices, but also give new coaches confidence. Associations should encourage parents to take these courses, especially the mid-season one. This offers a chance to recruit parents as coaches for next season and also educate them about coaching.
Costs of Coaching Education
If your association is promoting coaches to take an NCYSA or USSF coaching course, it is important to also determine who is responsible for paying for the course. Some associations will host a Level I or Level II Youth Course and pay for all new coaches to attend. Other associations will budget in money for individual coaches to attend courses on their own. Usually a portion of the cost or the entire cost is reimbursed following successful completion of the course. NCYSA does offer a Free Youth Module which is a great way to introduce coaching education to new recreation coaches. Click here for more information regarding the course content and schedules for all NCYSA offered courses.
Many associations provide curriculums with age appropriate lessons for their coaches. Whether you are providing lesson plans for each practice or just ideas, it is important to make sure that coaches know what skills should be taught for the age that they coach. For ideas check out the links below.
NCYSA Lesson Plans
Indiana Youth Soccer
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