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One of the key changes in the U.S. Soccer coaching license pathway has been a recognition and inclusion of a task entitled “Managing the Performance Environment”. A key part of this task for coaches is in building relationships with parents and creating an environment in which coaches-players-parents work together to create the best possible learning opportunity for their players. For a long time I have believed and promoted the fact that coaches must work with and alongside parents. I believe coaches should do all within their power to help the parents understand the importance of their role in their child’s...

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As the last line of defence, the soccer goalie is the final obstacle standing in the way of the opposition team scoring a goal. As such, it’s a high pressure position where any mistake can mean disaster for the team. To keep a clean sheet and give their team the best chance of victory, the soccer goalie needs to work well with the other defenders on the team. Communicating constantly and alerting defenders to any possible danger that arises. As the ball will spend large parts of the game at the opposite end of the pitch or in the midfield,...

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By Janis Meredith  To every sports parent, I say: I hope your young athlete is enjoying their youth sports experience. I hope they are having fun, growing, making friends, developing skills, and learning valuable life-impacting lessons. I recognize, however, that for many of you, the youth sports experience has become more serious. In the process of learning to love the game, your child has become very passionate about being the best they can be and they desire to keep playing at higher levels. If that’s you — your child wants to keep pushing themselves and working towards the next level...

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What am I going to wear? The forecast looks good, but it could be freezing out on the field. It usually is. It doesn’t call for rain, but it’s clouding up now. It will probably rain. I really should layer up, bring a coat, a hat, maybe even some gloves, and an umbrella. I’ll probably sweat with all that on. I never dress right. I never know. But I swear it feels like it’s getting colder outside. Where is the game today, anyway? I really need to look up the field. I’m sure it’s far away, so I’ll spend four...

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Being a rock star sports parent has nothing to do with how skilled of an athlete your child is and has everything to do with how you handle the youth sports journey your child has chosen. Most people would agree that you are a rock star sports parent because you drive your child to games and practices, wash uniforms and volunteer as team mom. Those are definitely rock star-worthy achievements. But I'd like to suggest some less obvious ways that you are a rock star parent — things you do that may not have been seen by anyone but yourself...

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