Silent sideline

Silent Side line Soccer
Takes place for all NECSL Coaching League games in the NEFL grounds and St. Pat’s School on the first weekend of each month throughout the season.

The main aim is that with Silence on the side-lines there is no external pressure put on the players. The players are free to have fun and enjoy playing soccer.

On “Silent Side line Soccer” the coaches and parents should be silent on the sidelines. Sometimes as a coach and as a parent, we can become over enthusiastic and yell out constant instructions like “pass, shoot, clear the ball, move, are you blind referee etc.” With the side-lines quiet and no coaching from the line, this will let the kids make their own decisions on the field, and they will be able to talk to each other. The children will decide who will take the free kick, kick in, penalty etc. The silence will encourage children to communicate to each other. The players have the chance to make their own split-second decisions on the pitch and learn by them whether the decision was successful or not. This also gives them time to think and focus on what they are about to do.

“Silent Side line Soccer” may appear extreme, but it is time to give the game back to our young players. Keep an open mind. Ask your children how they felt about not getting yelled at from the sidelines. Think how you would feel in their shoes.

“Silent Side line Soccer” objectives:
• To re-emphasize that the game is about letting the players play and have fun.
• To give the players a chance to play totally on their own.
• To eliminate the verbal questioning of the referees’ decisions.
• To help the few parents and coaches who feel they must provide constant direction, and to understand that the players can play very well on their own with limited instruction.
• Way of measuring the player development within the team over the season.

How does it work?

• No Shouting Instructions.
• No Shouting at the ref.
• No Shouting at the opposition.
• No directing or advice from adults at any time.
• Absolutely No shouting when a player is about to receive the ball or pass it.
• Silent at all times even when a team scores (only clapping allowed).
• Clubs should select 1 side-line supervisor with each team to keep people calm and explain the process.
• Coach to speak to players at halftime and when making changes ONLY.

While the vast majority of adult verbal participation is intended to be positive and constructive, the fact of the matter is that games can (and have in the past) become so loud that the players often have difficulty hearing each other on the field and may feel intimidated.
So…let’s sit back, suck on a lollipop, save our vocal chords, and enjoy the game. The only sounds to be heard are the children playing, the referee’s whistle and applause from the side-lines for both teams.

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