Info Especially for Minisoccer Parents
Remember to read our General Program information as well.
Well Before The Season…
Registration for Minisoccer (and all DYSA age groups) takes place months before the season starts, especially for Spring season. Reminders about registration deadlines are posted on our website, and are also run as news items in the Duxbury Clipper -- usually in the Sport section.
Discounted registration deadlines allow you to save money by registering before a deadline, but more importantly allows our many volunteers the appropriate lead times to prepare for the season.
Help us run a more effective program by registering on time - and early if possible!
[DYSA Minisoccer does not offer "walkup" registration on Minisoccer game days. Unregistered walkups cannot be accommodated at game time as coaches and administrators are focused on the many games in progress. All families must use DYSA's online registration system; please contact the Age Group Coordinator for your child's age group if you are registering after the season starts, and especially if you register within two days of a game. Our Age Group Coordinators will assist you with being assigned to a team in advnace of the next game.]
As The Season Is Starting…
You will hear from a coach before the season starts -- usually in the last week before the first game (see current season schedule for game dates). Don't panic if you haven’t heard from a coach until just before the season -- we are usually juggling a lot of late registrations as we form teams and coach assignments. (See note above about how registering on time can help us improve this).
If you do not hear from a coach by the Friday before the first game, please check our board listing to find the contact info for the Age Group Coordinator for your age group (see age ranges here), and give them a call. They can help you track down your coach and team assignment.
What To Wear/What To Bring To The Field:
Players should dress for the weather - we will play in lots of different type of weather. Layered clothing will help keep kids comfortable as the temperature changes within a game day.
Players are issued a lightweight short sleeved uniform t-shirt. No shorts or socks are issued for Minisoccer age groups. Players may wear their own shorts, sweatpants, windpants, or long pants as the weather dictates.
All players are required to wear shinpads fully covered by socks. Shinpads and "soccer socks" are available at ProSports in Kingston, and Target at Independence Mall has some reasonably priced soccer equipment available seasonally in their sporting good department.
Cleats are optional, although recommended. Solid sneakers will work fine. Double knots, please! Coaches tying shoes are not able to provide coaching to the kids with their laces securely tied. If shoelaces out of control are a chronic problem, try a piece of tape over the knot, or try out Sweet Spots, available at ProSports or other local sporting goods stores..
For player safety, jewelry of any kind (including earrings) is prohibited.
For player safety, casts of any kind (plaster, fiberglass, hard, soft, etc.) are prohibited.
Bring a full, reusable water bottle with player name on it. Kids get thirsty when they run around for an hour - especially at the beginning of Fall and at the end of Spring seasons as the temperatures climb. Reusable = Recyclable, and names on the bottles means there is less chance that they are left behind (for someone else to clean up…)
You do not need to bring a ball -- unless you want to arrive early or stay late to shoot around on your own with your child. Coaches have enough balls for each player.
When The Coach Calls or Emails:
Remember to write down your team number. If your coach doesn't give you one -- ASK! You will need to know this when you arrive at the field for your game, as your team number is your field number. There are up to sixteen fields in use at one time. You will need to know where you are headed.
Remembering your coach's name is also a good thing to do!
At The First Game:
Fields: First Things First -- find your field! Your game schedule is the key to knowing where to go.
To see your schedule, go to your Team page, accessible through the Teams tab at the top of the DYSA website. Make sure you set the Season, Level, and Team dropdowns correctly).
Your child is assigned to an age group (either U6 or U8, and either Boys or Girls), and to a team number and name.
For U6, your team number is made up of the division and team number -- Example 1: U6B03 is Team #03 in the Boys U6 age group.
Teams play on the same field each week; your team number is your field #. You should go to the same field each week!
Fields will all have a numbered sign next to them. Boys generally play on field numbered 1-8; girls are generally on field 9-16. Click here to see field layout diagrams for Minisoccer.
Uniforms -- Your child will receive a uniform tshirt from your coach at the first game. Arriving early allows the coach to best allocate shirt sizes to players.
Always Be There For Your Player - The Minisoccer "No Dropoff" Policy:
"No Dropoff" Policy -- DYSA Minisoccer has mandated a policy of no "drop-offs" due to a marked increase in this phenomenon in the most recent Minisoccer sessions.
• Please do not drop off your child and leave while the session is in progress. Please ensure that at least one parent or guardian is present and visible at all times.
• Youngsters often look for parents, and there are frequent water breaks where players are instructed to go to parents.
• Our young players at times need the comforting of a parent -- in the rare instance where they are struck with a ball hard enough to make them unhappy; or when they lose interest (...yes, at times even the best coach cannot create interest where there is, at times, none).
• In this situation, the child cannot be consoled, and the attention of a coach can be monopolized by a single player to the detriment of the experience of all other teammates.
• In the unlikely (but possible) even that we need to evacuate the field due to sudden changes in weather conditions, you will jeopardize safety of your child, other children, and our coaches if you are not present to take you child from the field.
So -- Please Stay at the Field -- and please enjoy watching your child for the entire hour!
Safety Considerations During The Games/ During The Season:
Goal Safety -- For safety reasons, please prevent children (any of them -- even if they are not yours!) from playing on/climbing on full size nets and goalposts.
Frisbee, lacrosse, baseball, football activities are not allowed within soccer field complex during Minisoccer. Please take advantage of the baseball field area to keep our young players safe from inadvertent injury due to non-soccer activity and equipment.
No Dog Policy -Please leave your dogs or other pets at home.
• Please seriously consider that some spectators, adults and children alike, are not comfortable with animals;
• There are many very small children in attendance for whom a strange dog can be threatening -- even if you "know" that you dog is a nice dog.
• Animal fecal matter continues to be a problem, especially along the inside of the fence along the road between the concession stand and the school entrance. No pets=no poop.
How to Help Out During Each Game:
You can help! Some skills games (like "Clean Up Your Backyard") result in a lot of balls being kicked out of bounds and into adjacent fields or empty space. Feel free to help by keeping watch for stray balls. Parents are encouraged to cover the perimeter of the field during these skills events.
We take frequent short water breaks. When this happens, kids are instructed to visit their parents to get water. This gives you a chance to provide positive reinforcement to your young player! Please be present and visible to your child at all times.
Parental/Fan Behavior Guidelines:
Zero Tolerance Policy -- Although it is better applied to older age groups with referees and more competitive situations, all parents must read and be familiar with the Coastal League Zero Tolerance Policy governing player, coach, and parent behavior.
Other Parental Behavior Guidelines:
[Disclosure: The following content was borrowed liberally from Pembroke Youth Soccer - who run a great website!]
• Children have more need of example than criticism. Make athletic participation for your child and others a positive experience.
• Attempt to relieve the pressure of competition, not increase it. A child is easily affected by outside influences.
• Be kind to your child's coach and to the officials. The coach is a volunteer giving of personal time and money to provide a recreational activity for your child. The coach is providing a valuable community service, often without reward other than the personal satisfaction of having served the community.
The video "Attitudes Are Contagious", produced by Mass Youth Soccer, is now available on their website. This video focuses on the issue of sideline behavior of adults and has received national praise. Featuring actual game footage shot during league games and at tournaments, the video shows adults being themselves – their comments, actions and antics along the sidelines. You will hear referees talk about how the sideline behavior of adults affect them, and the impact the comments can have on matches. More importantly you will hear from the players themselves – what they think of the comments from the sidelines. This video has been shown many times on local cable television and is now available to you on your home computer. Click on one of the links below to view the video from the Mass Youth Soccer website.
Attitudes Are Contagious - WMV format
Attitudes Are Contagious - MOV format
Note: Your viewing experience may vary depending on the software you have on your computer and the type of connection you have. Depending on these factors, the video may begin playing almost immediately or it may need to be downloaded completely before viewing.
After Each Game…
Please please please clean-up during and after the games. Think of Minisoccer as one of those Carry-In->Carry Out national parks or beaches. If your player and other family members show up with snacks and drinks, then the packaging and remaining contents should leave with you. The grass does not want your empty juice box!
• Please take a broad perspective on cleanup -- make it a contest for your kids to pick up whatever litter is in your area or on your way off the field, whether you generated the trash or not.
• Each season, the Town of Duxbury has reminded ALL sports leagues (in no uncertain terms!) that the Town will not mow any fields with trash left on them. We (players, parents, coaches, administrators) are all responsible for cleanup of the fields. Don't assume that a nameless volunteer will clean up after you - please make it your own business to do so.
• Putting a player's name on a reusable water bottle helps players remember which is theirs…which is one way to reduce trash!
• Teach kids to clean up their own stuff; there is no "clean-up magic" that takes care of it if they don't
• There are many trash barrels around the field complex to help with this task.
Please turn in any found items to the Lost and Found at the equipment shed next to the concession stand.
If It Is Raining, Thundering, Snowing, etc.:
We will cancel if there is any thunder or lightning, or if rain is heavy. We may cancel if it is not raining, but forecast calls for significant rain. We may play if it is raining "a little". We hope it never snows; we'll figure that out when it happens.
• In the case of inclement weather, games will be cancelled by 12 noon of the morning of the game.
• Cancellation notices will be posted on www.duxburyyouthsoccer.org by 12 noon on game day. If no cancellation note is posted, the games will be played.
Field Evacuations…We All Need To Be Ready Just In Case!
On occasion, even the best weather forecast is wrong. Although we will cancel in advance if the event of thunder or lightning, we need to be prepared to leave the field quickly if electrical storms or other dangerous conditions arise during the games. The Coppens field complex has little to no adequate shelter when this occurs.
As a parent, you must remain at the field for the Minisoccer hour. When dangerous weather approaches, a series of multiple whistle blasts is the signal to begin the field evacuation process. When this signal is sounded, the following steps will occur:
1. All play must halt immediately.
2. Each head coach will gather their team in the center of their respective field.
3. Parents should retrieve their players by approaching the coach, making eye contact and taking their child by the hand and escorting them off the field, directly to vehicles. During emergency evacuation, under no circumstances will coaches permit a child to run away unaccompanied from the team to a parent.
4. Any children not retrieved by parents will remain the responsibility of the head coach.
5. If necessary, a second series of multiple whistle blasts will signal coaches to move any remaining children to the safety of their vehicle. Although we will attempt to allow all parents to retrve their children prior to this, there will be a point when safety mandates that all remaining persons from the field immediately.
Regarding Equipment: We care about our Minisoccer equipment, but we stop caring about it immediately when danger arises. In the event of a field evacuation:
a.) All goals and corner cones should be left where they are. We will have adequate time to break down the fields after the danger has passed.
b.) Although game equipment is a secondary concern, assistant coaches can pack their team's game balls, cones, pinneys, etc. only if time permits and safety permits. Leave them if danger is imminent. You can always return later!
Other Stuff To Know About The Coppens Field Complex:
Rest rooms are located behind the concession stand.
"Lost and found" is kept in DYSA's equipment shed, next to concession stands. If you have lost something, please ask your coach to have an Age Group Coordinator assist you in determining whether your article was turned in. You can also post yor lost or found item on the DYSA's Exchange.
So You Think You Want To Help Out…and Maybe Even Coach:
As you, as parents, watch a Minisoccer season, many of you will realize that coaching youth soccer (and other sports) relies on a heavy dose of common sense and supervision skills, and not as much on soccer expertise as you might have previously believed.
This may entice some of you to realize that you too are able to contribute as an assistant coach.
If so, please contact an Age Group Coordinator (see Board Listing for contact information). Training is available for interested parents in advance of each season.
[First time coaches are always paired up with experienced coaches, so don’t let the fear of being handed your own team right away stop you from joining the fun.]