«

»

Feb 07

Coaching Football – Making Football Safe for Kids

Football is an intense, high-contact sport. Many parents worry that the game might be too dangerous for their young child. With the proper coaching, however, kids football can be a fun and safe way for a child to learn teamwork and make friends.

Equipment

The first step in coaching football effectively is to make sure the players have the proper equipment. Everyone should have the following items in good, working order:

– helmet with face guard
– athletic supporter with protective cup
– shoulder pads
– kidney pads
– pants with thigh and knee pads
– mouthpiece
– shoes with short cleats
– sweat socks
– jersey

Conduct

After equipment, the next step in ensuring the safety of young football players involves proper conduct in the game. Making sure the players and referees know and follow the rules will make the game more fun for everyone.

Most kids football leagues use high school football rules with a few minor adjustments. For example, kickoffs and blitzes tend to cause more injuries in football, so kids leagues can leave out those aspects of the game until the players are more advanced.

Instead of kickoffs, the receiving team can spot the ball on the 35-yard line. Because blitzing (or red-dogging) creates an unnecessary element of surprise in the game, the rules can simply be changed so that the defensive back is not allowed to make a premeditated rush.

Limitations and Restrictions

Finally, two more limitations and restrictions can be made to make football more safe for kids. Because exhaustion from over-practicing often afflicts young football players, coaches should limit the number of practices in kids leagues. Children should focus on learning the basics of the game during practices, not conditioning their bodies for grueling matches.

Lastly, coaches should restrict the number of formations that can be used in a game. Football can be very complex, but kids can adjust to the complexities over time. To start, they should learn the game in its simplest form. The kids will be more under control, and therefore safer, in the game if they are comfortable with the formations they will face during play.

Football is a challenging sport, but kids can both have fun and stay safe if coaches remember to keep it simple and make sure the players are properly trained and equipped!

Conclusion

With just a few tweaks, any coach can make smart decisions about coaching football. Remember to check players’ equipment before beginning practice and strictly enforce proper behavior on the field. Safety is everyone’s responsibility, but the coach must lead the way!

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Leave a Reply