Organizers say they are pleased with the footing a local youth soccer program has gained in the area in its first year.
The East Wake Soccer Association’s Academy Program has grown in size and reputation for development and education since it began in August, 2012, EWSA director of coaching Nathan Bird said.
Bird said the program has laid the foundation for the EWSA to be successful for the next 5-to-10 years.
“A group comprised of young athletes eager to learn and develop from Knightdale and surroundings areas has brought stability and growth to the club,” Bird said. “The players are dedicated and motivated at such a young age to improve, yet doing it with a smile on their face.”
The program’s focus is on the development of the individual young players rather than the development of a team. The program also takes some of the pressure of the game experience out of the picture, allowing the coaches and players to focus more on skill development.
Academy participants play games with players from other, similar programs in the state – just without keeping score.
“Games are exciting as all focus is on the task set and accomplishing it little by little,” Bird said. “These games allow our players to enjoy the game and also give our coaches the opportunity to teach without having the pressures of winning or losing a game, which can affect the development of the players.”
Players ages 7-9 who want to develop their skills alongside players with similar abilities are encouraged to join the academy, but organizers stress the academy will not be for all players. The soccer program determines which players are ready for the advanced training, and then assigns the players to groups based on skill level.
For more information, visit eastwakesoccer.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org@gmail.com.
From staff reports