Wednesday, August 13, 2014

First 100 Days - Report Card

On March 1, I posted a blog regarding the initiatives we intended to implement at Prince William Courage.

It was and continues to be our goal to develop and enhance these four areas:
  • Player FIRST!
  • Curriculum Implementation
  • Courage University
  • Social Media | POY
We spent the spring season reviewing these areas, getting input from technical and senior staff coaches. So, after 5 months, how have we done...

Player FIRST!
A few years ago PWSI began the meaningful and necessary transition from a team driven association to a club by bringing the select program under one structure. Teams that once made decisions on league play and tournament independently were brought under the oversight of a technical director.

However, most coaches and almost every parent still looked at the priorities as team first, player second and club third. (Upcoming blog on how we define a club.)

Our goal is to continue this transition by altering the priorities we place on each of these areas. We have asked our coaches to view all decisions through the following priorities. 
  1. Player FIRST!
  2. Club second
  3. Team third
In the spring we introduced the NPL player pools in most age groups. It is now an expectation for all of the 11v11 age groups. Simply, players in the white teams are nominated by the team coach and approved by the director to train once per week with the Red team. 

Additionally, we have provided enhanced programming for the U13-14 non-Red team players with our technical training. This training, led by our directors brings the white/black teams together for an additional night of training. 

Note - Last September, we added Academy training for the boys 2000-2001 Red team. This training was an additional night of training for the 2001's who ended up with more than 45 hours of additional training than originally scheduled and a US Youth Soccer Region 1 Championship. The 2000's also had a very successful spring season and more importantly an invitation to the U.S. Soccer Development Academy.

The spring 2014 curriculum was launched at the end of March. It has been introduced for the fall 2015 season and will be formally released on September 1.

The curriculum will be fully integrated into the expectations for the Development Academy, preparing our younger players for the top league in the country. 

For our older players we have adjusted our approach to the training environment and usage of field space to help them prepare to be showcased to college coaches. 

After several months of planning, Courage University was officially launch on August 1, 2014 with our pre-season coaches seminar. (See schedule below)

A special thank you to Gordon Miller, Virginia Youth Soccer Association Technical Director and Mark Parson, Washington Spirit Head Coach who each gave their time and energy to our coaches. 

In addition to the seminar we launched our coaches resource center, providing activities and lesson plans to PWSI select and classic coaches. Every Development Academy session (August 4, 2014) is made available to our coaches and our technical staff has already uploaded more than 20 of our Best Practices activities (Over the River activity) with additional activities added weekly. 

This was the first official event of with our goal to expand to parent education and a college recruiting seminar for our players. 

Our goal of celebrating our players has led to expanding our footprint in social media. The Player of the Week program has been extremely well received by the membership and will return on August 27. 

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram and like us on Facebook! Our follows and likes are up nearly 50% in the past 6 months. 

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