TriWest Soccer Parent Responsibilities
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It is the parents' responsibility to monitor their child’s soccer experience. Parents who feel their child is not being treated fairly or in a positive manner by a coach should first make an effort to discuss the problem with the coach as soon as possible. This should be done by telephone or perhaps after a practice but never before or during a game. A good rule is to wait 24 hours until emotions have settled. If the problem is not resolved after discussion with the coach then the parent may call the appropriate Age-Group Coordinator for further assistance. The Age-Group Coordinator will work with the Coaches to resolve these issues; however they will directly report what they consider to be more serious problems to the TriWest Board for final decisions.
1.0 BEHAVIOR TOWARDS REFEREES
Providing a core of well trained, certified referees for 140+ Under-10 through Under-16 players is a tremendous task. The referee organization that handles all U10-U16 represents a group of dedicated youths and adults who are on the field during games to provide safety and fairness for our teams.
We parents and coaches need to keep in mind how difficult it is to be a referee, especially if you are young. We lose many referees every year because of the harassment they receive from coaches and parents. Last season we lost new referees after the first few games because of this.
The role of referee must be recognized and respected by the coach, the team and the parents. Youth referees must be given the same respect as the adult referees. The referee in a soccer match has complete authority over players and coaches from the moment that the referee enters the grounds to the time the referee leaves.
• Derogatory remarks or gestures to a referee or parent official are not allowed.
• Coaches may be penalized for inappropriate behavior by parents, players, or spectators.
Like all of us, referees will make mistakes. You are entitled to be disappointed when you think the referee is doing a poor job, but don’t let these feelings interfere with the game. It is the coach’s responsibility to contact the TriWest Referee Coordinator who then will contact the CMSA or SWL about the Referees if he or she feels a referee needs to improve on skills.
Some points to remember:
1. Referees are in charge of the game. Their decisions are final.
2. Arguing with referees is not acceptable--Do not harass them.
3. Their contribution is vital to our League.
4. Continual arguing with referees can result in disciplinary action.
2.0 SOCCER CONDUCT
Parents, spectators, coaches, and referees have responsibilities and obligations to keep our soccer program a fun sport for all. With this in mind, please observe the following:
- Cheer positively for the things you like and encourage your team. Have fun! Never put down the other team or any of the players on either team. Please leave any sideline coaching to the coach. Spectators frequently yell instructions to the players - these instructions often contradict those of the coach and only confuse the players.
- Our referees, like all TriWest officials, are volunteers, not professionals. While their decisions may not always be agreeable to all participants and spectators, they are final. No useful purpose is served by shouting disagreement or derogatory remarks. Referees can caution players (showing a yellow card) and dismiss players from the game (showing a red card) for misconduct. Referees can also caution and dismiss coaches, and can even terminate the game. Deliberate fouls, or abusive words and disrespect on the part of players, coaches, or spectators can lead to these actions. Every year we have many new referees and coaches. Each is volunteering to do a difficult job, and mistakes inevitably occur. Heckling the referees or the coach is totally unwarranted. Serious problems involving coaches or referees should be brought to the attention of a TriWest Age Coordinator then discussed with the TriWest Board of Directors after the game.
- For the safety of all, coaches and spectators must stand at least 1 yard from the sideline. No one is allowed behind the goal or within 18 yards of the goal line on either side of the field. In addition Parents are asked to remain on the same side of field that their kids are on, unless the case where two teams are on the same side where then the parents will sit where stands may be provided. Coaches and referees are asked to enforce this condition.
- No smoking or alcoholic beverages are allowed at games or practices.
- For any players who cannot play for a health reason, or is under suspension, he should not wear a uniform to the field. It is our responsibility to encourage everyone to use these facilities properly and to keep the fields clean and free from litter. If you see anyone misusing the facilities (climbing fences, throwing litter on the field, etc.), please bring the matter to the attention of a coach, referee, or TriWest Age Group Coordinator.
3.0 PARENTS' CODE
As a parent, you play a special role in contributing to the needs and development of youngsters.
Through your encouragement and good example, you can help assure that all the kids learn good sportsmanship and self-discipline. In team sports, young people learn to work together, to sacrifice for the good of the team, to enjoy winning and deal appropriately with defeat - all while becoming physically fit and healthy. Best of all, they have fun.
3.1 Support Your Child
Supporting your child by giving encouragement and showing interest in their team is very important.
Help your child work toward skill improvement and good sportsmanship in every game. Teach your child that hard work and an honest effort are often more important than victory - that way your child will always be a winner despite the outcome of the game!
3.2 Always be Positive
Parents serve as role models for their children. Become aware of this and work to be a positive role model. Applaud good plays by your child's team as well as good plays by the opposing team.
Support all efforts to remove verbal and physical abuse from youth sports activities.
3.3 Remember: Your Child Wants to have Fun
Remember that your child is the one playing soccer, not you. It's very important to let children establish their own goals - to play the game for themselves. Take care not to impose your own standards and goals on them.
Don't put too heavy a burden on your child to win games. Surveys reveal that 72% of children would rather play for a losing team than ride the bench for a winning team.
Children play for the fun of playing. If we take the fun away from them, they will drop out of soccer.
3.4 Reinforce Positive Behavior
Positive reinforcement is the best way to help your child achieve their goals and their natural fear of failure. Nobody likes to make mistakes. If your child does make one, remember its all part of learning, so encourage your child's efforts and point out the good things your child accomplished.
3.5 Don't be a Sideline Coach or Referee
Coaches and referees are usually parents just like you. They volunteer their times to help make your child’s youth soccer experience a positive one. They need your support too.
That means refraining from coaching or refereeing from the sidelines. As a volunteer organization, there's usually always an opportunity for you to take your interest in coaching or refereeing to the next level and become one yourself!
4.0 PARENTAL SUPPORT – THE KEY TO PEAK PERFORMANCE
The role that parents play in the life of a soccer player has a tremendous impact on their experience. With this in mind, we have taken some time to write down some helpful reminders for all of us as we approach the upcoming season. If you should have any questions about these thoughts, please feel free to discuss it with coaches, or any member of the TriWest organization
Let the coaches’ coach: Leave the coaching to the coaches. This includes motivating, psyching your child for practice, after game critiquing, setting goals, requiring additional training, etc. You have entrusted the care of your player to these coaches and they need to be free to do their job. If a player has too many coaches, it is confusing for him and his performance usually declines.
Support the program: Get involved. Volunteer. Help out with fundraisers, car-pool; anything to support the program.
Be you child's best fan: Support your child unconditionally. Do not withdraw love when your child performs poorly. Your child should never have to perform to win your love.
Support and root for all players on the team: Foster teamwork. Your child's teammates are not the enemy. When they are playing better than your child, your child now has a wonderful opportunity to learn.
Do not bribe or offer incentives: Your job is not to motivate. Leave this to the coaching staff. Bribes will distract your child from properly concentrating in practice and game situations.
Encourage your child to talk with the coaches: If your child is having difficulties in practice or games, or can't make a practice, etc., encourage them to speak directly to the coaches. This "responsibility taking" is a big part of becoming a big-time player. By handling the off-field tasks, your child is claiming ownership of all aspects of the game - preparation for as well as playing the game.
Understand and display appropriate game behavior: Remember, your child's self esteem and game performance is at stake. Be supportive, cheer, and be appropriate. To perform to the best of his abilities, a player needs to focus on the parts of the game that they can control (his fitness, positioning, decision making, skill, and aggressiveness, what the game is presenting them). If he/she starts focusing on what they cannot control (the condition of the field, the referee, the weather, the opponent, even the outcome of the game at times), he/she will not play up to their ability. If he/she hears a lot of people telling them what to do, or yelling at the referee, it diverts his/her attention away from the task at hand.
Monitor your child's stress level at home: Keep an eye on the player to make sure that they are handling stress effectively from the various activities in his life.
Monitor eating and sleeping habits: Be sure your child is eating the proper foods and getting adequate rest.
Help your child keep their priorities straight: Help your child maintain a focus on schoolwork, relationships and the other things in life beside soccer. Also, if your child has made a commitment to soccer, help them fulfill their obligation to the team.
Reality test: If your child has come off the field when his team has lost, but he/she has played his best, help them to see this as a "win". Remind them that he/she is to focus on "process" and not "results". His/Her fun and satisfaction should be derived from "striving to win". Conversely, they should be as satisfied from success that occurs despite inadequate preparation and performance.
Keep soccer in its proper perspective: Soccer should not be larger than life for you. If your child's performance produces strong emotions in you, suppress them. Remember your relationship will continue with your children long after their competitive soccer days are over. Keep your goals and needs separate from your child's experience.
Have fun: That is what we will be trying to do! We will try to challenge your child to reach past their "comfort level" and improve themselves as a player, and thus, a person. We will attempt to do this in environments that are fun, yet challenging.