It’s FIFA World Cup season, folks!
If you’re a soccer family, curious about soccer or even love to travel this is a month-long event you don’t want to miss. In our house, the World Cup soccer tournament is a celebration of watching our favorite countries and players play, in addition to learning about the culture and history of the game. As a soccer family, we’re amazed at the level of soccer skill and play from our favorite players and the passion and love they have for the game. These pros started off playing soccer (aka Futbol, Football, or Footy) from a young age with neighborhood pickup games or local recreational leagues right in their neighborhoods.
Fortunately for us with curious young soccer fans or little ones that want to play a sport we have a local organization right here in the Triangle, North Carolina FC (NCFC) Youth, providing the same opportunity at the recreation level. Their programs are not just focused on the elite player, but they specialize in providing a recreation program for ages 4-19 years where families can experience an introduction to soccer that is centered around learning and fun!
NCFC Youth’s recreation soccer program, held in the Fall & Spring, stands out amongst other recreational programs because of many positive factors. If you’re thinking of registering for soccer or want your child, especially between the ages of 5 – 8 years, to experience a team sport, then this might be the option for you.
(Insider tip: Early Bird Registration opens up June 18th with a savings of $25 off registration fees. Learn more HERE.)
5 Reasons Why Families Will Love Playing NCFC Youth Rec Soccer
1. Low-Pressure Introduction into Sports
NCFC Youth Rec programs are designed for children to enjoy the game of soccer while learning the fundamentals. No pressure for teams to be #1 in the group or for kids to think they are being evaluated by coaches. Parents will find no team rankings or standings here which allows families to ease their children into soccer or team sports. NCFC does offer competitive leagues and training programs later on down the road.
2. Social Developmental Gains – Building Skills on & off the Field
Soccer is not only about playing the game but can build many enriching lifelong skills and interactions that transfer over into everyday life. In a program such as NCFC Youth Recreation, kids are learning good communication & critical thinking skills, learning how to cooperate and work as a team, building their leadership skills and understanding how to practice good sportsmanship. In addition to making new friends! Most importantly, in a safe & supportive environment, kids are learning that on the field (and off) it’s okay to make mistakes or to try something new. This builds confidence and encourages young players to work on or improve a new skill.
3. Location & Time Commitment
Location & time can be the most significant factors in signing your child up for an activity. NCFC’s recreational programs have that covered as they serve Cary, Garner, Raleigh, Wake Forest, Holly Springs, Fuquay-Varina, Durham and Chapel Hill areas. Although NCFC Youth is the largest elite soccer organization in our state, they value that young families want to stay close to home especially when the youngest of players are involved. NCFC’s rec program keeps that community-neighborhood feel by placing kids on teams that live around the same neighborhood. Players will participate in one practice during the week at the same location and time while playing one weekly game in their region. Familiar faces and playing with friends is a benefit to any kiddo playing a sport for the first time. Also, parents can be encouraged that each Fall & Spring session is 9 weeks and families can commit to one seasonal session or a year-long session.
4. A Specialized Recreational Soccer Program Designed By Experts
As you know, NCFC’s program specializes in soccer development for kids of all ages and abilities, and they know that a child’s love of soccer starts early at the recreational level. What does this mean for families? Throughout the year NCFC Youth has worked hard to hone a recreational curriculum where families will have a positive first experience stepping into the world of soccer. Expert, seasoned coaches, and staff specifically design weekly, age-specific practice plans and offer coaching educational classes for parent volunteers. These programs are designed for kids to not only learn the fundamentals of play but will walk away wanting to learn and play more soccer.
Player development starts first with building the love for the game. Kids are meant to have fun with their teammates learning new skills and how to work together as a team to aid in building a positive foundation in soccer. In addition, more enhanced player development can come in later if families decide to move up to a more competitive level with NCFC Youth.
5. Trained Parent Volunteer Coaches
NCFC Youth knows the importance of parents being involved in their children’s first time participating in a team sport. At the NCFC Youth, rec level parents can volunteer to coach or assist with their child’s team. However, instead of sending a parent off with a whistle and a couple of game notes, parent coaches are highly encouraged to attend a seasonal educational class run by NCFC Youth coaching experts. This class introduces parent coaches to the curriculum and gives them tips for coaching their specific age group. In addition, parent volunteers are given equipment such as cones and a soccer ball.
Recreational soccer programs are a great place for parents to observe how much their kiddo enjoys the sport and also enjoy playing at the team level. With the North Carolina FC and NC Courage, our local pro soccer leagues, starting up and FIFA World Cup Tournament kicking off Triangle area families are in an exciting season of exposing their young fans to the game.
If you’re interested in learning more about the NCFC Youth Recreational Program* visit their website here: http://www.ncfcyouth.com/Default.aspx?tabid=2013976
*Early bird registration is June 18th and practices begin August 13th with one practice during the week and one game on the weekend. Fall rec soccer is the end of August – end of October while Spring rec soccer is mid-February – end of April.
*Register by June 18, 2018, to save $25 on registration fees.
Can’t wait until Fall and want to get your son or daughter playing soccer this summer? Learn more about their summer programs here!
Who will you be cheering for during the World Cup Tournament? We’d love to hear from you! Please share in the comments section below.
North Carolina FC Youth, a 501c3 non-profit youth soccer organization, is the product of a collaboration between Capital Area Soccer League, Triangle Futbol Club Alliance, and North Carolina Football Club. NCFC Youth’s mission is to provide positive, high-quality soccer opportunities at all levels of play for youth and their families and to serve as a valuable community partner. The youth club’s inaugural season was Fall 2017, when nearly 14,000 youth players (ages 3-18) take the fields. To learn more about NCFC Youth, visit www.NCFCyouth.com