As part of its continuing effort to improve the quality of coaching at all levels in the United States, the U.S. Soccer Coaching Education Department has introduced the final three online Grassroots Coaching License Courses for 7v7, 9v9 and 11v11 a-side matches. Designed to empower coaches with education relevant to their specific coaching needs, the eight total Grassroots Coaching License Courses serve as the foundation of U.S. Soccer’s Coaching License Pathway.
Here are five things you should know about the launch of U.S. Soccer’s 7v7, 9v9 and 11v11 Online Grassroots Courses:
OPTIONS FOR COACHES OF ALL LEVELS
The combination of eight Grassroots Licenses help coaches ensure fun, enjoyable, and developmentally appropriate environments for their players. Prospective coaches have the option to partake in any of these new courses – in any sequence – after completing the cost-free, Introduction to Grassroots Coaching Module provided by U.S. Soccer in the Digital Coaching Center (DCC).
The eight Grassroots Course options relate directly to small-sided games and the respective age-groups outlined in U.S. Soccer’s Player Development Initiatives.
Designed to inspire and empower coaches throughout the Grassroots landscape, these practical courses offer education that is relevant to individual coaching needs for:
- 4v4 - created for U6, U7 and U8 (launched in February)
- 7v7 - created for U9 and U10
- 9v9 - created for U11 and U12
- 11v11 - created for U13 and above
HOW TO TAKE ONE OF THE NEW GRASSROOTS COURSES
To take any U.S. Soccer coaching course, you must have a DCC profile. If you do not have one, you can create one for free in the DCC. After you have created an account, log in to your profile, and select "Courses" from the top menu. Under the "Available Courses" tab, select the option to "Begin Course" for the free Introduction to Grassroots Coaching Module. Once the module has launched, you will be on your way to completing your first Grassroots License!
After completing the Introduction to Grassroots Coaching Module, coaches can advance to any of the eight In-Person and Online Courses across the four grassroots levels: 4v4, 7v7, 9v9 or 11v11.
Users can sign up for any of the four In-Person Grassroots courses through the DCC. All In-Person Grassroots Courses are organized and run by U.S. Soccer member organizations. Find your local Member here.
HOW TO ADVANCE ON THE COACHING PATHWAY
A combination of three Grassroots Licenses are required to progress to the U.S. Soccer D License. Coaches will use the DCC to complete a minimum of three Grassroots Courses, in the form of two In-Person Courses and one Online Course:
- Two In-Person Courses (one of which must be the 11v11 course)
- One Online Course from the four available (4v4, 7v7, 9v9, 11v11)
Coaching candidates who have already completed or begun to take the old E or F License Courses will have the following opportunities to use those certifications to count toward the D License prerequisites:
- U.S. Soccer E License + Introduction to Grassroots Coaching Module
- U.S. Soccer F License + Introduction to Grassroots Coaching Module + 11v11 In-Person License + one other In-Person License
WHAT TO EXPECT FROM THE 7v7, 9v9 AND 11v11 ONLINE GRASSROOTS COURSES
Coaches who take the 7v7, 9v9 or 11v11 Online Grassroots Courses can expect to be provided with tools and strategies to create a fun environment for their players. Coaches will study how grassroots players learn and develop to their full potential through a player-centered coaching approach. Additionally, the course teaches coaches about the characteristics of 9-13 year-old players and how to foster a supportive and safe playing environment. Coaches will also be exposed to U.S. Soccer’s Grassroots Coaching Philosophy, the Grassroots Roadmap, and the training session concept known as Play-Practice-Play.
ONLINE VS. IN-PERSON COURSES
The 7v7, 9v9 and 11v11 Online Courses, which take approximately two hours to complete, can be taken on any computer connected to the internet at the coach’s own pace. Featuring frequent interaction with the course module, the courses require coaches to answer practical questions, set-up virtual training sessions and reflect on their learning throughout the course.
The 7v7, 9v9 and 11v11 In-Person Courses, which take roughly four hours to complete, offer grassroots coaches the opportunity to practically apply the concepts they are learning and try their hand at running a Play-Practice-Play training session on the field.