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Mass Youth Soccer Strong

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The mission of Mass Youth Soccer is dedicated to the ongoing development of youth soccer players, coaches, referees, clubs and leagues in an inclusive, safe, affordable and fun environment. 

 

The #MassYouthSoccerStrong program was developed to provide resources, tools and inspiration to build healthy habits for physical activity, nutrition and mental wellness for youth athletes. Throughout the months of January, February and March 2021, Mass Youth Soccer will be providing free content to help engage players and assist them in taking responsibility in their own development as soccer players, athletes and people.

 

Through the promotion of regular physical activity, healthy wellness habits and regular practice of mental training techniques, Mass Youth Soccer's #MassYouthSoccerStrong program is aiming to help children develop the skillset and mindset to help them thrive on and off of the soccer field. 

 

Click on the dropdown's below to see resources, activities and challenges for this week, or click on the tiles at the bottom of the page to view content sorted by topic.  

 

Activities and Content for Week 1: January 18th - January 22nd

Mental Strength Monday - Self Esteem

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Building your self-esteem as an athlete 
According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary:
  • self–es·teem: a feeling of having respect for yourself and your abilities;
  • a confidence and satisfaction in oneself: self-respect
Below are mental game tips to help sports kids perform their best in competition:
 
1. Let go of fear- Most athletes fear making a mistake in the game, of letting their team down, or of not making “the” play that causes the team to lose an important game. All athletes will make mistakes but once the mistake is done the best way to go about it is to learn from it and move on. 
 2. Play freely instead of holding back- Knowing and believing that the athlete has done everything possible to prepare for the event not only gives the athlete a mental edge over the competition, but also increases the athlete’s belief in his or her skills and abilities. The athlete’s knowledge and belief in his or her skills allows for freely applying these abilities needed during the competition.
3. Make no comparisons- Each athlete must be looked at individually, as a valuable asset to the team, and each athlete should understand the value that he or she brings to the team. 
 4. Don’t try to be perfect- Athletes must believe in their training, abilities, and skills, and they must understand that mistakes are learning opportunities.
5. Be confident- The athlete must have confidence in the hours spent mentally and physically preparing for the event - the repetitions, the workouts, and the coaching.

Technical Tuesday - Hallway Passing

Hallway_PassingNumber of Players: 2 – kids, parents, grandparents (whomever is available)

Equipment: 1 tennis ball and the longest hallway in your house.

Organization: Each player chooses an end to play from. Players must start at opposite ends of the hallway and as far apart from each other as possible.

Object of the Game: Pass the tennis ball to your opponent without hitting and walls. Your opponent has 1 touch to play the ball back without hitting any walls. If a player hits a side wall with the ball, they lose 1 point. Whomever has the ball closest to them restarts the game once both players are ready. Once either player loses all their points, the game is over. Begin a new game with all players starting with 10 points.

Scoring: Each player starts with 10 points.
-1 point for hitting a side wall.

Who is the first player to lose all their points?

Variations (select as many variations as necessary):

  • Allow more touches as needed.
  • Limit the touches the winner of the previous round gets.
  • Return to a closer distance and try to play 1 touch back and forth. Open the distance again each round.
  • (kicking the ball in the air could cost points, player’s choice)
  • 1 player or both players must use their weaker foot.

Wellness Wednesday - Pre-Workout Fueling

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Having energy throughout a training session or game, especially on days where players have school or even other sports activities, is a challenge for many youth athletes.  Fueling the body properly is essential for optimal performance on the playing field. Take a look at this article to learn more about WHEN to eat and WHAT to eat prior to training.  Always keep in mind that every athlete is different and it is important to experiment to see what works for YOU! https://truesport.org/nutrition/pre-workout-fueling/

 

Challenge: Experiment with how long prior to a session you need to fuel your body so you can have energy the entire time!

 

Thankful Thursday - Volunteering

VolunteeringVolunteering can provide a healthy boost to your self-confidence, self-esteem, and life satisfaction, while doing good for others and the community. Your role as a volunteer can also give you a sense of pride and identity. Click the links below on how you can better serve others.

 

Youth Sport Trust Click Here

Youth Volunteer Case Study Click Here

Oprah on Volunteering Click Here

 

 

Fitness Friday - Just4Kicks - Online Injury Prevention Database

Just_For_Kicks_LogoJust4Kicks, led by Dr Julie Hubbard’s comprehensive exercise database was designed for youth soccer players, in an effort to promote injury prevention and performance enhancement amid the COVID-19 related "stay at home" orders.

View the full library of videos by clicking on the link below: 

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFYrwdcO2Xy4YZU1D6tTOKw

With much uncertainty surrounding the coming winter months, Just4Kicks has created a user-friendly, virtual bank of exercises that players can implement for the comfort of their own home! These exercises are user-friendly and involve minimal to no fitness equipment, allowing athletes a sense of 'autonomy' and 'competence' when completing their workouts. The database is a collection of 10 YouTube playlists with 300+ exercise videos. Each playlist starts with a "How To" video, describing exactly how to capitalize on each individual playlist. 

Please direct any specific exercise technique/prescription questions to contact@just4kicksboston.com.

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