Hempfield Soccer Guide for U10
The mission of Hempfield Parks and Recreation for their in-house soccer programs at the U10 level is to provide a fun and safe environment for kids to learn the game of soccer. The mission of the Hempfield Area Soccer Club for their U10 soccer teams is provide an avenue for advanced players to grow their skills playing with and against other players of similar ability while maintaining a fun and safe training and playing environment.
Learning the Game: Our goal is to teach all players to play to the best of their ability. That means that all players are given equal opportunities to play and equal attention during practice.
Having Fun: The difference between players that continue to play and those that stop wanting to play is having fun. To achieve this, we ask that you encourage participation, try to match challenges to abilities for all players, and set goals for performance instead of outcome.
Safety First: It is the coach’s job to ensure that the activities and environment are safe and age appropriate for all sessions.
U10 Player Development:
The typical soccer player entering U10 will have played 4 seasons at the U8 level. Some may have played less (or not at all). Some may have played at U5 and U6 as well. Players will play a maximum of 4 seasons at U10 before moving up to travel soccer. Players move up in the fall, so in fall seasons, you will have many players who have never played at the U10 level before. The goal of the Hempfield Recreation program is to build on the basic skills introduced in U5/U6 and developed in U8 while incorporating team concepts.
Provide a fun and rewarding experience for players, coaches, and parents.
Continue to develop basic skills of the game
Give every player as many touches on the ball as possible
Focus on learning team concepts of play
Transition considerations for U8 to U10:
Players are playing on a much bigger field with more players on the field
Will have more understanding of positions, but will still lack discipline to play a formation
Have never played a game with a goal keeper. Also, have never played goalkeeper
Will not be aware of offsides or the build-out line
Characteristics of U10 players:
Attention span and intellectual abilities grow tremendously from U8
Will begin think sequentially and conceptually (If I do this, then that will happen)
Will most likely be playing soccer by their own choice
Players will be more aware of their peers and should derive pride and confidence from their team
Will begin to understand fundamental tactical concepts
Will be much more “coachable.”
Player Development Objectives:
Control the ball using all sides of the foot
Dribble out of trouble (into space) using advanced turns (pullback, chop, Cruyff) and sheilding
Dribble past another player (incorporating fakes and feints)
Use a soft first touch to control the ball
Passes and shoots with power using the instep and laces
Completes short passes to teammates during gameplay
Defending 1 v 1 using shadowing techniques and block tackles
Defending off the ball in supporting “cover” positions
U10 Tactical Objectives:
Players at this age will start to understand the game in a more conceptual and tactical way. You can start to introduce situational concepts to your practices and instruction. Keeping these concepts simple will give the best results
Playing in combination (give and go, moving after a pass)
Transitioning from attack to defense and vice-versa
Team defense (pressure/cover/balance)
U10 Psychological Objectives:
Continue to keep all practices and games fun. A recreational athletic program for children should first and foremost provide enjoyment to the participants. There is no point in a child getting “better” at something they don’t enjoy.
The psychological side of coaching becomes much more important at this age group. We want to continue to provide a fun environment by encouraging players to be creative and confident. Encourage players to make their own decisions with the ball and work through problems. Team building should be a constant thing with your players.
U10 Physical Development Objectives:
None!! While introducing the concepts of stretching (preparing our bodies for sport) and conditioning (improving our bodies to get better at sport) can begin to be done at this age group, it is still completely unnecessary for the kids. These things should not take a major portion of your team’s limited practice time. Being actively engaged in practices and games will provide kids this age with all of the physical development that they need.
The U10 program through Hempfield Recreational Soccer is primarily focused on providing a fun environment for children in our community to learn and develop their abilities in the game of soccer. Individual ball skills remain a focus, while basic tactics and team concepts are added to players’ development. Coaches provide positive feedback and encouragement.
And remember, YOU should be having fun too!