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The international popularity of soccer has made it a popular sport amongst American youth. Currently, there are about 3 million children between the ages of 5 and 19 playing soccer. This has created a need for coaches to help moderate the games played by around 8,200 youth soccer clubs.
Becoming a soccer coach requires certain skills such as a knowledge of the game, communication, management, and fundraising. You don’t want to start coaching without basic knowledge like how long a soccer game should be or what insurance your team should be having. This is why it is important to attend a basic coaching course before you start coaching. Read on for more information on the fastest way to become a certified soccer coach.
US Soccer Coaching Licence Courses
The US Soccer federation offers several levels of coaching licenses such as C, D, E, and grassroots coaching. The basic course that most coaches attend is the 18-hour basic level ‘E’ license course. It teaches you how to coach children between 9-12 years. At the end of it, you would also have mastered basic attack and defense soccer strategies. In order to manage the requirements of the course, you must be physically fit.
National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA)
A less formal route to become a coach is to get a coaching diploma through an NSCAA course. There are several diploma options based on the age of the children you want to coach. The NSCAA courses provide a great foundation to become a coach especially if you are young. They allow anyone aged 14 and above to join a coaching course.
The first level is the youth diplomas for those that want to coach youth at level U-10 and below. The level 1 diploma teaches you how to coach soccer to young children and requires a time commitment of 2.5 hours. It is for level U-5 to U-8. The level 2 diploma can be done in 5 hours and is for levels U-5 to U-10. The main difference between level 1 and 2 is that level 2 schools you on how to teach young children the laws of soccer.
Finally, The level 3 diploma takes 13 hours to complete and is for levels U6 to U10. Coaches doing level 3 perform a practical demonstration of what they have learned and get feedback from the instructor. It also teaches how to handle parents. Level 3 has a lot of practical sessions and takes place over two days, unlike the other 2 levels. None of the three diplomas require you to sit for an exam to pass.
Other than these there are other diplomas offered by the NSCAA for more experienced coaches. These include the Junior Level V, Level VI and Level VI Supplement, the National Diploma, the Advanced National Diploma, and the Premier Diploma. There is also a High School Coaching Diploma course and a Goalkeeping Level I, II and III Diploma.
Getting a coach certification will give you the knowledge and confidence required to successfully coach a team. For more tips on coaching read the rest of our blog.