U5 to U10

U5 to U10

The Club provides team play and skills development for our youth players.  Staff coaches support all of our programs.

U5 KickStart

The KickStart program is for boys and girls aged four years old. The season runs indoors on Saturdays and Sundays from September to late February/early March with a winter break.  One parent or caregiver for each player is required at all sessions.  Parents can request to have their three-year-old child join in.  If the parent or staff coach feels that the child is too young, a pro-rated refund will be given.

U6-U7 First Kix

The First Kix program provides skill development and small-sided games with minimal rules.  The season runs from September to late February/early March with a winter break. There are two sessions per week – a Saturday session outdoors on a grass field (weather permitting) and a mid-week practice in a local gym.  A staff coach provides guidance to the coaches and players during the Saturday sessions.

U8 Soccer

At U8, we continue with Small Sided Soccer as recommended by BC Soccer. The focus is on player development in a non-competitive environment.  Games are usually 4-a-side (including goalkeeper).

All games are scheduled for Saturday morning through to the early afternoon and each team practices once a week between games. All games are on the North Shore against other Club teams.

The U8 age group also receives Futsal indoor soccer sessions

The Club requests coaches to not place any emphasis on the result of the game and instead focus on player development. The Club only tracks results to monitor parity amongst the teams so that schedules can be re-configured when there is a lack of parity.

When playing the two-field format, U8 coaches are instructed to switch players between the two fields as required to keep a competitive balance amongst the teams and players.

The Club encourages the competing coaches to place their stronger 2 or 3 players on the same field to achieve a competitive balance in both games, so that the same 2 or 3 players do not dominate the game or score all the goals. This format will allow the other players to develop at their own pace without the pressure of a dominant player taking the ball away immediately. Players that fall between these two levels can experience time in both settings thus allowing them to be challenged in some instances and to achieve greater success in other games.

U9/U10 Two Streams Description  

The North Shore Youth Soccer Association offers two separate pods for Clubs to enter their U9 and U10 teams, House Select Pod and House Development Pod. This will allow its member clubs to place like ability players together at U9 and U10.  The games are 6-a-side (including a goalkeeper) for U9 and 7-a-side (including a goalkeeper) for U10.

The Club’s goal is to avoid having 1 or 2 players dominate in both game and practices, leaving other players to rarely touch the ball or make any substantial contribution to the game. Placing these players in another division, allows for the remaining players to get more involved, take on more leadership roles and acquire more interest. Further, it allows for more touches and time on the ball for these players, which will enhance skill development.

By grouping players with similar ability, coaches are able to deliver activities at a pace that meet their players’ needs. In this way, instruction is differentiated, meeting players at their level with the goal of moving them along the continuum of Long Term Player Development.

The issue of unbalanced teams is one that many Clubs have to deal with. There are teams of players that go through a season with very little success, leaving players, parents and coaches discouraged. This can lead to problems of player and coach retention. Having teams of players with similar abilities is designed to alleviate these issues.

The goal of ability-based teams is to allow all players to play at their skill and confidence level. We want all players to be challenged, to build their skills and to enjoy their playing experiences. We believe that providing children with the opportunity to play with and against those of similar ability will enhance both player and coach development.

When forming U9 and U10 teams for each season, the Club will identify approximately the top 15% of their players to play on multiple teams in the House Select Pod. The majority of the players will play on multiple teams in the House Development Pod.

Teams are formed through assessment of the Club staff coaches through the current Under 8 and Under 9 season and then teams will be formed with all efforts to balance all teams within each the House Select and the House Development Pods. Friendship requests will also be taken into consideration within each pod, especially for the House Development Pod where we will have the majority of the players. Team coaches will also be asked to offer some input. Finally, there will be a re-evaluation period in late spring and at the beginning of the U9 and U10 season in the fall to move players that have been placed in the wrong pod relative to their ability, have changed significantly over the summer and need to be moved, or are new to the Club and need to be placed appropriately. The Club Technical Director will oversee all evaluation initiatives.

Questions?  See the U9 and U10 Q & A.