Youth Sports Should be Stress Free

Children want to play and parents want their children to perform well. This conflict is played out all the time in youth sports. In a ‘USA Today’ Survey in 1991, 38% of the children said they would prefer that their parents did not attend their activity and 45% said they could not sleep the night before worrying about the event.

What happened? All children want is to have fun and play ball with their friends. Have we gone too far in pushing kids to win and be their best?

Coaches Vs. Parents… Never a Fun Experience

There is an active lawsuit where parents are suing the Cy-Fair School District for not allowing their child to play, and therefore denying him the possibility of a scholarship. The coach’s defense for not playing the boy was disciplining him for poor behavior. However, the parents say their child lost out on being noticed by scouts and was being unfairly treated by the coaches. This lawsuit is the result of the unfortunate importance and money placed on sports at younger and younger ages.

Ultra Competitive Youth Sports Isn’t for Everyone

The myth of college sports not being highly selective and competitive is bad for youth sports. The odds are 1 in 40,000, and most do not graduate with their scholarship due to grades or performance on the field. Plus, if they do play all 4 years, at most schools the graduation rate is only 20% to 50%, and the odds of a pro career is 1 in 1,000,000. The lottery has better odds.

So, why are parents risking so much? Well, parents want what is best for their children, while coaches want what is best for their team. Youth sports have become more about money and prestige when it should be about including everyone and allowing children to have fun, positive experiences.

Creating a Fun, Fair, Positive, Environment for Everyone!

So, what can parents do? Go back to the basics! Kids want to play and have fun, it’s as simple as that! Parents need to do their best to foster a fun, fair, and positive environment for everyone. Let kids enjoy being kids.

Learn More About FFPS Today!

Being Rewarded is Important

So there it is – all shiny and made of pure gold. It might be plastic but the kids can’t tell. That amazing piece of artistry on a marble base that makes Michelangelo blush… it is so magnificent. It is what every kid dreams of when they start playing soccer or any sport for that matter. Not really, although it’s called a “participation trophy”. For some unfortunate reason, it has become a talking point for parents when discussing the good and bad of youth sports.

Now when I grew up a long time ago, there was no discussion about the participation trophy. Only the winning team gets a trophy. If we are playing youth sports and I need to win to get a trophy, then put me on the winning team. It’s not the child’s choice to win or lose in a team sport.

Win or Lose, Everyone Deserves to be Recognized

In the end, winning and losing is not always a matter of how good a child’s skill maybe overall – it is how good the team is as a whole. There are many variables to how good a team might turn out to be, most of which are out of the children’s control. When children participate in soccer, they’re told they must win if they want a trophy. When did showing up and trying your hardest in youth sports for weeks not become a rewarding achievement?

If you do something good at your job doesn’t it help when someone says great job? Or maybe when you and the team get a bonus in the form of money. Now, what if the company did a great job as a team – should we not reward them with something so they continue to achieve? If they knew they would be rewarded for showing up every day for work, would they not try to do well? The participation trophy of the work environment is money, oftentimes in the form of a bonus.

Being Rewarded in Everyday Life

There seems to be a major argument as to why children should not be given a participation trophy. I am a firm believer that when you allow a child to blossom to their full potential in youth sports, they will enjoy sports more overall. Kids already put enough pressure on themselves to impress anyone watching, they don’t need an added element of an arbitrary scoreboard determining if they get a trophy.

When we go to a fast-food restaurant, what do kids get in that meal that adults do not get? I am not talking about the better deal and price. I am referring to the toy that accompanies almost every child’s meal at any fast food restaurant in America. It’s like a participation trophy of the fast-food industry. Yet nobody has a problem with rewarding every child in a meal. Why do we care more about what kids are doing in youth sports than what they are eating and putting in their growing bodies? I would argue that a reward for ordering an artery-clogging grease burger in a fast-food establishment should be a much more important discussion.

At FFPS Everyone Deserves a Trophy!

So let’s give all kids a reward for going out every soccer game and meeting friends while having fun at their pace. Let’s give all children a reason to participate in youth sports. Let’s encourage them along the way with positive reinforcement so they will continue to play. More positive growth in a child is gained by giving a participation trophy than will ever be lost.

Learn More About FFPS Today!

There are 3 main reasons to get your kids in Houston youth soccer. Are you tired of sitting at home and have nothing left on your Netflix library to watch. One of the best ways to get back some normalcy is to start, or in this case restart. If you have told your child to go outside more in the last year then now is the time. Playing soccer outside where it not only safe for kids, but also a great for their health and wellness.

Get Outside this summer!

If your network data bill have more megabytes on it than a dogs chew toy than its probably time to encourage outdoor activities again. Let’s get those kids some important Vitamin D and also learn important life skills while being together and socializing. Not only does being outside improve kids attitudes it will improve their health in these important times. With our Houston youth soccer program not only do the kids get outside but they are treated with positive instruction and get to play equal time in the games.

Do you have a first name relationship with your with your food delivery driver. Keeping the restaurant community in business is great but it can be harmful to your pocketbook while adding nothing to your kids life. If your child thinks Uber Eats is a restaurant you may need a change. What better way to work off those pounds than running all over the field in a Houston youth soccer league. Exercise is important at any age and for kids they start enjoying it at an early age by playing soccer. Running for a goal with chasing a ball makes the monotony of running much more enjoyable. That way when it is time to go to bed at the end of the night you may find them crashed on the sofa from all the running.

Fun, Fair and Positive for Everyone!

Do you have a better relationship with your Alexa than your neighbors it might be time to go outside. One thing kids need more than anything is to be with friends. What better way than in a positive environment like a youth soccer field. They will start to build self-esteem and confidence through playing on a youth soccer team. If they start every sentence with “Alexa” or “Hey Google” then it may be time to get outside and kick a ball around. There is something therapeutic about being outside on a Houston youth soccer field kicking a ball around with the kids. I think they should be saying “hey dad” can we kick the ball around again today.

Houston youth soccer done right!

If all or any of this speaks to you then make that change and register for one of our Houston youth soccer programs today. We guarantee that your child will get outside, have fun, and meet some amazing kids just like them on the soccer field. The hardest part of deciding to do anything is the start.

Learn more about FFPS today!

What Sets FFPS Apart from the Rest?

Since 1986, Fun Fair Positive Soccer (FFPS) has been providing a positive environment for kids of all abilities to enjoy the wonderful game of youth soccer. Jack Hendrie started the program in Katy, Texas after he and other local parents noticed that many soccer leagues put a ton of pressure on kids and focused on winning as the main point of the game. Creating FFPS was a way to change the kind of soccer experience kids were having and make the experience as fun, fair and positive for everyone involved. From humble beginnings with only 150 players in its very first season. Today there are over 16,000 players participating in over 21 FFPS programs in the Greater Houston area! 

Everyone Touches the Ball. A lot! Smaller Fields = More Play!

The core foundation of FFPS is the 5-a-side rule —5 players per side instead of 11 per side. This dynamic youth soccer format allows everyone on the field to get the ball multiple times, which means children learn quicker and the game is much more enjoyable overall. Adopted from a South American version called Salon Football, meaning “soccer in a small area” developed in the early 1930’s. The average field size in FFPS is 100 feet by 75 feet compared to the much larger fields in other youth soccer leagues.  For 34 years, Hendrie has been using this engaging style of play and enabling kids to really get to play across Houston. 

FFPS Equal Substitution System

Another unique aspect in the FFPS formula is the “Equal Substitution System”. This specially designed substitution system means all players rotate to every position and each player plays equally in that game. Plus, there are no all-star teams or tryouts either. All of this keeps FFPS games as fair as possible.  

FFPS Balanced Team System

FFPS has developed a “Balanced Team System”, using a custom proprietary computer program to ensure all FFPS teams are balanced (evenly-matched) each season. Balancing teams is a core value and principle of FFPS. We believe that balanced teams make it more fun ‘for the kids’ to play their game as both teams will be able to get the ball more equally. So, games in which one team dominates – goes against our core value of balanced teams.

FFPS 100% Inclusion Policy

Other aspects that set aside FFPS from most youth soccer leagues includes their continued commitment to working with schools across the Houston area to incorporate at-risk youth into their leagues. FFPS also offers scholarships to any families who are in need, so they too can enjoy the game of soccer. Lastly, no one of any soccer playing ability is turned away from FFPS. Any child with a disability who wants to participate, the FFPS staff will setup an interview with the parents to safely guarantee that their child’s needs are fully met. At FFPS we are committed to finding a way to get every child on the soccer field! 

Creating a Positive Environment for Everyone

Creating a safe place for children to enjoy youth soccer is an incredibly important aspect of our core philosophy at FFPS. We do not allow any derogatory comments or persistent yelling that would belittle, distract or embarrass players. “We ask that if you must yell, use encouragement! Better yet, relax, enjoy and let the kids play!” FFPS Founder Jack Hendrie. 

We Can’t Wait to See y’all on The Field!

Register before 10/14/2020 for guaranteed placement. Otherwise, late registrations are first come, first serve.

FFPS Return to Soccer Safely Protocol

3 ways Youth Soccer Contributes to Social and Physical Well-Being 

| Fun | Fair | Positive | Soccer |

When your child takes part in youth soccer and other outdoor physical activities, a window of new opportunities automatically opens for them! It provides your child with the opportunity to create social connections in real life as they encounter new kids outside of their regular social environments. As children start to gain a sense of belonging and community, they are also developing valuable social skills like self-esteem and other vital social behaviors. Fun Fair Positive Soccer has been committed for over 20 years to creating a safe, social environment for your children to grow and prosper.  

In addition to combating loneliness and boosting self-esteem, youth soccer also has many other benefits to children’s overall happiness and well-being.  

Playing Youth Soccer Can Help Reduce Stress and Lower Anxiety

With increasing amounts of stress and anxiety in our children, it’s vital to find simple activities to boost their confidence and well-being. With youth soccer and physical activities in general, children can distract their brains allowing for crucial moments to shift away from the craziness going on in the world, and just enjoy the activity at hand. Additionally, regular physical activity can reduce hormone levels in their bodies, making it easier to relax and un-wind in the afternoon. 

Playing Sports Can Help With Mental Sharpness/Awareness  

The fight to master a daily routine and learn from home in 2020 can be difficult to say the least. Unfortunately, some children fall behind when it comes to their overall cognitive development. However, youth soccer can help sharpen their decision and reasoning skills. While playing soccer, children naturally practice critical thinking and decision making, thus helping with their overall concentration. Plus, they get to have fun outside while doing it!    

Playing Youth Soccer Can Help Improve Sleep 

An unfortunate consequence of schools being closed and replaced with home education, is that many children tend to fall out of their normal school routines and sleeping patterns. However, regular exercise can drastically improve their sleep patterns and the quality of rest they receive. Ultimately, this has a positive effect overall on their mood and energy for the day ahead! 

Safety Protocol

As Texas begins to open up, we are excited for children to be safely returning to Fun Fair Positive Soccer, because we know how important this is for kids’ mental and physical health. At FFPS, we believe that youth soccer is more than just a simple game. Our goal is always to provide a fun, fair, positive, experience in which kids have a chance to develop soccer skills, learn good sportsmanship and increase their self-confidence. CDC Youth sports outdoor safety protocol.

Click here to review our return to soccer safely COVID-19 protocol  

Register before 10/14/2020 for guaranteed placement. Otherwise, late registrations are first come, first serve.

Fun | Fair | Positive | Soccer

Normal life has changed drastically for everyone since the COVID-19 pandemic. We want to assure you that getting back to Fun Fair Positive Soccer will not come at your expense or safety. At FFPS we have taken a rigorous “Return to Soccer Safely” protocol to ensure the safety of your family and all participants at our soccer games. This FFPS season, you will see a few new things during games/practices including the following safety measures:

Safety Protocol

  • Spectators will stand a minimum of 6 feet apart from others and from the sidelines. Masks will be required for parents on the sidelines at all FFPS events.
  • We will be strongly recommending that only one parent/guardian per player be in attendance, if possible.
  • No high fives, handshakes or intentional physical contact. Positive cheers encouraged!
  • No team snacks or drinks. Each players needs to bring their own water bottles and individual snacks.
  • FFPS Coaches and Referees will be required to wear a mask during games & practices.
  • Traditional FFPS celebrations modified including parent tunnels which will be replaced with clapping lines

Considerations for Youth Sports| CDC

At FFPS, we want you and your family to be able to return to play with confidence knowing you will get the same fun, fair, positive, soccer experience you’ve come to love and expect from FFPS!

Till we see you again, let’s all do our part to be safe. And when it comes time to take the soccer field again, we’ll make sure we do it together, safely! 

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us here and choose your specific league.

Fall Season Sign-up

Register before 10/14/2020 for guaranteed placement. Otherwise, late registrations are first come, first serve.

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