Grassroots Coaching

Football Coaching on a summer football camp

I recently oversaw a summer football camp in Somerset. There were a group of twenty four 10 and 11 year olds, including boys and girls. The players were of very mixed abilities. Some were very good players, whilst a number had very little experience. All of them had a lot of energy and enthusiasm.

The coaches were a group of 16 – 18 year students who were taking their Level 2 NVQ in teaching, coaching and instructing and their Football Association Level 2 certificate in coaching football

The weather was great, very hot and sunny. The coaches had to organize the coaching schedule and to ensure that all the sessions were safe, fun, organized and not only captured the young players’ attention but also kept it. It was a new learning experience for everyone.

The young football coaches met the week before the course to plan the sessions, to check the coaching equipment, the facility requirements, such as the pitch area, the toilet and changing facilities etc. They also had to get together a comprehensive register of the players and ensure that all medical or special needs were recorded and that all the players were logged in and out for all the sessions.

These young coaches did a fantastic job. All the players had a great time, learnt new skills and had lot and lots of fun

One of the key learning lessons for the young coaches was that there was a huge difference between coaching themselves on an educational football coaching course and coaching young players of varied abilities, different personalities and varied concentration spans

The coaches worked hard to improve and develop the players’ technical abilities and one of the surprise sessions where the players really improved was on a defending session. The players really picked up on 1v 1 defending sessions and on the 2 v 2 pressure and cover sessions.

All of the sessions the young coaches put on included some work on improving the basics of football, such as passing, control, support and communication. All the sessions had to be bright, enthusiastic, and progressive and include some form of competition element that the players found so enjoyable.

One of the really fun games was called Football Cricket. The kids really got into the game. Whilst the game was a lot of fun, the kids learnt a number of key things that will help them with their football development, these being:

  • Team work
  • Social skills
  • Fitness
  • Support play
  • Passing – short and long
  • Moving to get in the line of the ball – when batting


Posted in
Coach Education FA Level 1 FA Level 2 Player Development