For boys and girls
born between January 1, 2011- December 31, 2012
SEE NOTE BELOW.
NOTE: THE TRAINING DIVISION IS A LEAGUE. GAMES ARE SCHEDULED BASED ON THE NUMBER OF PLAYERS AND TEAMS REGISTERED. A GAME SCHEDULE WILL BE PUBLISHED WHEN REGISTRATION IS COMPLETE. GAMES WILL BE PLAYED ON SATURDAY MORNING OR SUNDAY AFTERNOON.
PHILOSOPHY & OVERVIEW
The Training Division emphasizes the development of basic soccer technique and skills through age-appropriate and enjoyable games and short-sided scrimmages. The primary objectives are to have fun, to learn basic technique and skills, to learn to enjoy soccer as a team sport, and to encourage continued participation in soccer, as the child grows older. Weekly practices usually include short-sided scrimmages, and games are played on weekends in fall and spring. The Training Division is open to children ages 6 or 7 by December 31st. Games will be played in a 3 v 3 or 4 v 4 or format to promote skill development in a fun environment. While a “sweeper keeper” can be used, true goalkeepers are discouraged because it creates a static playing environment.
What does U- refer to? Please note: Recreational soccer divides children by calendar year of birth. This differs from Travel Soccer, which divides children by year from August 1st. In Recreational Soccer, “U” refers to “under” but it means children in that category may be turning that age by the end of the year (for example, U-7 means kids seven by December 31st and under.)
There is a maximum of 12 players per team. There are usually and 22 – 24 teams in the fall season and 12 – 14 teams in the spring season, depending on number of registered players and the number of coach volunteers.
Training Division plays small sided soccer, which consists of 3 vs. 3 or 4 vs. 4 players on each field. There are multiple games played simultaneously on small sized fields. This optimizes the number of ball “touches” each player gets. It if designed to familiarize each player with the game of soccer and teambuilding.
The game shall be divided into four (4) equal eight (8) minute quarters. There shall be two (2) minute break between quarters one and two and another two (2) minute break between quarters three and four. There shall be a half-time break of five (5) minutes.
There is one practice per week for 1 hour during the week night, typically 5 – 6 pm or 6 – 7 pm. There is one game per weekend, either Saturday or Sunday. Training Division games and practices are usually at Aiken School fields.
Size 3 soccer ball, shin guards, cleats, water bottle
WHY SMALL-SIDED SOCCER?
A normal soccer match consist of 11v11. Anything smaller than this is considered small-sided soccer. WHYSA has adopted a small-sided soccer format for the developmental divisions of recreational soccer. A study of young (9 and under) players by Manchester United in the U.K. showed that during a similar-duration 8 v 8 game and a 4 v 4 or 3 v. 3 game, on average, the 4 v 4 or 3 v. 3 based games increased the number of passes by 135%, the number of scoring attempts by 260%, the number of 1 v 1 encounters by 225% and the number of dribbling skills (tricks) demonstrated by 280%. They concluded that the 4 v 4 or 3 v. 3 based games offered players a significantly higher number of touches (as defined by the number of passes, shots, goals, 1 v 1 encounters, and dribbling skills) than comparable 8 v 8 games. Furthermore, 4 v 4 or 3 v. 3 based games were better for developing more skillful young players. The United States Youth Soccer Association (“USYSA”) also recommends small-sided soccer for children at these age groups.