Sunday, January 20, 2013

Soccer: U4 Active Start session - letter given to parents

We had our second Active Start session on Saturday morning.  Parents came ready to work this morning.  And they brought their children with them.

I thought it would be tough to sell patience to the parents ... I was wrong.  For the most part.

The layout of the session, according to LTPD, works.  Every week I will add new things and continue to push the boundaries, but keep it age appropriate.

There was one thing that I realized Saturday.  For the second time over two programs I had a parent tell me we should be having full games , etc.  I must have answered them with confidence because the conversation was short and their child was still participating in what we were doing.  I shared some info with the parents and I hope they take the time to find out more about what we are doing.  I

Their early support may be based in the fact that they trust me and my experience.  It's new territory for some of them, especially those who were involved in sports before.  I want their ongoing support to be base on knowledge and information that they gathered on their own.

January 19, 2013

Attention: Parents of U4 players

My name is Frank DeChellis and I am facilitating the Welland Soccer Club’s U4 program this term.   I am a member of the club’s Technical Staff and a Learning Facilitator with the Ontario Soccer Association.  Over the years, I’ve worked with players of all ages and levels, but the U4 players put a smile on my face that lasts until dinner. 

This program will be conducted using the Canadian Soccer Association’s Long Term Development Program (LTPD) as a guideline.  This group is at the “Active Start” stage.

For more information on LTPD and Active Start, please go to .  You can also visit to see Canada Sport for Life’s resources on Long-Term Athlete Development (LTAD).

While your web browser is open, take a few minutes to research “physical literacy”.  Concern about Physical Literacy grows every year as children play outside less.  Don’t assume all children are able to run, jump, kick, tumble, catch, throw and climb. 

Our program is about having as many children do as many of the activities as possible, with an adult as their partner.  The adult partner is the key to success.  As the children age we increase their time with other players, but U4 is about their development and quality time with their favourite person in the world, you.

Every session we will address physical literacy, soccer movements, soccer techniques and small games.  Intermixed with our exercises will be a lot of “high fives”, positive comments and drink breaks.

My invitation to you: watch how the sessions are delivered and consider becoming an Active Start coach.   Experience in sports is an asset, but not necessary.  And there is a short “Active Start” course by the Ontario Soccer Association to arm you with the information and resources needed.

If you feel that becoming an Active Start coach is a good fit for you, let’s chat.  I can see you thinking about it already. 

Please, feel free to ask me questions regarding this program or soccer for your child.  Administrative questions should be directed to the desk in the lobby.

Yours Truly,

Frank DeChellis