From Humble Beginnings
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!
Modern Challenges, Require Modern Solutions
Did you know that 71% of all children quit most youth activities by age 13? The two main reasons are very insightful; (1.) Being yelled at too much for making mistakes (2.) Not getting enough playing time overall.
How could we ensure the most fun and solve these issues? (1.) By designing the program around the children’s needs, not the parents or the coaches. The players always comes first at FFPS!! (2.) Secondly, 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.
Next, we asked ourselves, how can we structure the youth soccer program to benefit everyone? What does the child ultimately want from this experience? We’ve discovered children crave these 3 basics things: (1.) To Play, (2.) Being Respected (3.) Feeling Safe.
How Do We Accomplish This Feat? First, More Soccer Ball Touches!
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. 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, FFPS has been using this engaging style of play and enabling kids to really get to play across Houston.
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! Finally, we teach coaches and parents to use one of these four words before they say anything, Go….. Good…. Great….. Nice…..
Lastly, to help ensure the games are “For The Kids” only the players can announce the score. Not the Coach, not the parents, not the League. To guarantee these results, we provide a free 6 hours of required training for the Coaches.