Too often in kids sports; adults, parents and coaches become overly vocal in their approach to working with young athletes. However well-intentioned some of them may be, the results are not always positive. With a Silent Sideline Weekend, the coaches and parents are asked to keep talking to a bare minimum on the sidelines. One coach from each team will be given the task to instruct (not during the game), whilst everyone else stays silent.
Supporters are allowed to clap to show their enthusiasm but adults/Coaches are restricted from coaching their kids from the sideline. This is a weekend when kids can make decisions for themselves, without having adults shout 5/6 different instructions at them. When adults scream from the sidelines they’re not just invading the children’s playtime, they’re preventing children from learning the game in a natural manner. Sideline screaming is just ignorance, we need to educate adults on stages of development. We expect far to much from children at a very young age. We must not forget, we are talking about children not adults.
How does it work?
No Shouting Instructions. No Shouting at the ref. No Shouting at the opposition. Absolutely No shouting when a player is about to receive to ball or pass it. Silent at all times. Kids voices heard everywhere.
With the sidelines quiet, players have the chance to make their own split-second decisions on the pitch and learn by them. Instead of being distracted by the stream of noise that usually exists, the kids on the pitch get the opportunity to communicate with one another, deciding who will take the throw ins, the goal-kicks, free-kicks or the corner kicks etc. This also gives them time to think and focus on what they are about to do.
The focus of the weekend is not to take the atmosphere out of the kids’ game but instead try and encourage less coaching from the line. I want every team in Ireland in organised leagues in ever sport to conform to the ‘Silent sideline’ weekend. Not everyone is going to agree with this idea, but one thing is for sure the kids will!
I’m aware that many teams have some great coaches & parents who may already give minimal instruction and focus on the positives in a game more than others. This exercise is to highlight the over coaching from adults on the sideline across kids sports in Ireland and mainly soccer. I think a lot of kids will benefit from this even if they are use to hearing encouraging words every weekend.
You can be sure that one population that favours the silence is the referees. They will love this, and I’m sure they would love to have it every weekend.
What’s Expected from Participants?:
*To get all clubs and leagues to sign up across the whole of Ireland and the world. ALL CODES *Clubs to manage this initiative internally with our support and the support of every club and league. *Club should select 2 sideline supervisors to keep people calm and make them aware of what is expected. *Each club should have a silent sideline ambassador. *Absolutely NO shouting or directing from the sidelines *Coaching staff to speak to players at halftime and when making changes ONLY. *Clapping allowed for goals scored and effort for both sides. *No directing or advice from adults at anytime. *Absolutely no questioning of referee in charge of game at anytime. *Rope the pitches and provide a designated area for parents.
The only time you can shout at the kids that weekend is to get them up out of bed!!!!
The voices of the players should be all we here.
*PDF flyer available on request. *Silent Sideline Packs also available
Can you imagine a weekend when kids voices were heard everywhere……..I can!!
Lets make this happen; let’s start talking about it….!! If any leagues and/or club administrators are reading this, please get in touch. I have just emailed you all.
If this doesn’t make you think about the damage we are doing to kids every weekend, then maybe A Players Message To Parents will!
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Don’t forget: Weekend of 29th & 30th March 2014
Hosted by The Coach Diary “let the kids play”