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The checklist for a youth soccer player

The new soccer season is fast approaching. Have you got everything your child needs to start the season off strong? Make sure they have the right gear for every practice session, game, and tournament with this comprehensive checklist of items from Soccer Garage:


You will need all the basics like t-shirts, soccer shorts, socks. If you can, spend the extra and buy sports-specific t-shirts with moisture-wicking fabric. Young players sweat a lot, and this will keep them dry and cool for longer. They will play better more often. Also, proper soccer t-shirts will last longer.

As a backup, put a set of socks, a t-shirt, and shorts in a Ziploc bag for rainy and damp days.


Your child will need a comfortable pair of flip-flops to wear between games, and while traveling. Discourage them from wearing their soccer shoes anywhere but on the pitch. The shoes will last longer and take on less damage. Also, use surface specific soccer shows.


There are other items that go into your soccer bags. First, there is the water bottle. Get an insulated water bottle that will keep the water cool for longer and one that has indicators so that your child can follow water drinking targets to remain hydrated. You will also need small sticks to get the mud out of shoes, trash bags, extra elbow and knee bandages, and a small first aid kit.

When traveling for an away game, the team will provide a list of items for you, so match that with what you already have.

Soccer Nutrition: What to eat before your big game

Nutrition is important for everyone but is even more important for a soccer player before a game. Please note that although this article talks about what to eat the night before and the morning before a game, ideally you want to eat like this most of the time. Also, the following are examples that you need to tailor for your individual needs as a player.

The night before

The meal planning for the big game starts the night before. First off, avoid any junk food or food that you have not eaten before. The last thing you need is a distressed tummy before a game. With a lot of practice and training, you need to refill your glycogen stores, so look to eat whole complex carbohydrates like potatoes, rice, pasta, or darker bread. Also, start your hydration program the day before the game.

In the morning

Avoid eating large meals before your game. In the morning, about two to four hours before a match, eat a breakfast high in carbohydrates. Cereals and fruits are a good example of an appropriate breakfast before a match. If there is a lot of time between breakfast and a match, stick to small snacks like fruit and simple carbs leading up to the game.

The key here is to prioritize carbohydrates and hydration over protein and fats. The carbs fill your energy stores, keeping your energy levels stable throughout a game. After a game, you need lean protein and carbs to maintain and rebuild muscle.

Written by Soccer Garage.

Why Holding a Parents Meeting For Your Youth Soccer Team Can Improve Team Atmosphere

Summary: Youth soccer teams require an immense amount of organization and cooperation from the parents.

As a youth soccer coach, your immediate focus might on preparing for the preseason through a series of intense conditioning, long stretching sessions, and developing new plays and strategies. While all of these factors will pay huge dividends in the long run, one of the most underestimated areas are team meetings – not just ordinary team meetings, but parents meetings.

Improved Organization

One of the best ways to let your team know your expectations and goals for the season is to hold a mandatory parents meeting prior to the season. Doing so will allow you to communicate with the entire team and also let them know how you plan on running your practices.

Maintaining organization throughout the season can quickly spiral out of control if you’re not fully prepared. Feel free to let parents lend a hand when it comes to specific events. Most of the time, they’ll gladly volunteer, due to the fact that it’ll help them get closer to their children. Throw out a variety of options. For instance, you might want to treat the team to some juice boxes or snacks after every practice. Or, some of the members may need adequate transportation to away games – a van would work perfectly. These are only a few of the things that you’ll face throughout the season. And, when it comes to preparation, there’s no such thing as being “over prepared”, because when it’s all said and done, you know things won’t be all fine and dandy.

Discussing Costs and Fees

While everything should be self-explanatory within the contract (depending on the league) it’s important that the parents understand the costs of having their child on a youth soccer team – it’s definitely not free. Feel free to explain the total amount that each family will have to invest in items such as: soccer clothes, soccer cleats, accessories, and other supplies that they’ll need throughout the year.

Furthermore, if the league requires a specific fee for joining, be sure to communicate this among the families. The last thing you’ll want is an angry parent getting on your case for not discussing the costs of a soccer shinguard – from experience, it’s not pretty. Be realistic with all costs. You must also be strict with your policies as well. Leniency may come natural for young players, but they also need to learn that there are rules that must be followed in order to succeed. And, this can potentially translate into the real world as well – allowing them to uncover valuable life skills that will make them into a more mature individual.


Youth Soccer Shopping List for Parents

If you’re thinking about enrolling your son or daughter in your local youth soccer league this season, then you probably want to know what you’ll need to buy. One of the great concepts about soccer the world over is its affordability. The sport has expensive products and gadgets to use, but you don’t need a lot to play the game. Your league will probably cover youth soccer jerseys as they order for the whole team, but you’ll need to supply all the other equipment. Here’s a good list to go buy. [READ MORE] (more…)

Some Thoughts and Tips on Goalkeeping Gear

There’s a lot of misinformation and bad science floating around about goalkeeping gear that players buy into for one reason or another. In baseball, superstitions are well founded, and surely soccer players experience this too, but at every level goalkeepers are subject to some of the most interesting rumors about the sport.

It’s said, for instance, that a neon goalkeeper jersey somehow makes the keeper into a giant bullseye. This has never been proven, and would actually be a benefit for the keeper. His or her job is to stop the ball from going in the net, and they’ve already agreed to use their body as a shield. [READ MORE] (more…)

The Basics You Need to Know as a Soccer Referee

Soccer season never really ends, which is why there is almost always an opening for a volunteer soccer referee. Those opportunities can grow into professional positions, if you enjoy the work, but most referees start out at the local level. There, they learn the game and acquire all the soccer referee gear they need to stay prepared throughout their careers on the pitch. Here is  a basic primer for anyone looking to become a soccer referee. [READ MORE] 

Lift Weights to Become a Better Soccer Player

By Soccer Garage

If you want to become a better soccer player, you may spend hours on the field doing drills over and over. You probably work on your cardio a lot too. However, being a soccer player and definitely as a woman, you may not spend much time in the weight room.

Well, it’s time to change all that. While there is plenty of women’s soccer equipment on the market to help you build up your body, an old fashioned weight room will have plenty available for you too.

For example, start doing squats. Don’t wear your women’s soccer shoes for this because they’re not ideal for squats. Instead, you want perfectly flat footwear. Lifting barefoot is an option too if the gym allows this.

Doing heavy squats will make your legs more powerful and even build your cardio in a big way.

Deadlifts are great too. Once again, do these with flat shoes. By doing deadlifts, you’ll work your legs again, but also your core. A strong core makes for a strong player. It also helps with your upper back which is vital for aiming the ball.

Finally, do some chin ups. Again, this will help with the upper back, which is responsible for turning your body along with the core.

If you want to play your best game when you take the pitch, you’re going to need the best possible soccer uniforms too.

Are You Wearing the Right Cleats?

By Soccer Garage

No matter how good you are, like most soccer players, you probably aspire to be better. In fact, you probably aspire to be a lot better. You may even lose sleep over it. Soccer is the most popular sport on the entire planet and one of the reasons for this is because of the level of competition it inspires. No one wants to be anything other than the absolute best.

This is why every little element matters when you’re trying to reach this goal. You can’t simply wish yourself to this ultimate level, you have to take steps to get there in any way you can.

Soccer footwear is a big part of this, maybe even bigger than any other sport out there. For one thing, a player is only as good as their feet are in this game. However, the right shoe is also important for keeping the player comfortable so they can give it their all throughout play.

To do this, the Adidas F50 is an obvious choice. You’ll be able to play an entire match at your absolute best as far as this shoe is concerned. The rest is up to how badly you want it.

If you take soccer as seriously as the rest of the world, then you know that playing like a champion begins by looking like a champion. This is why you have to have Adidas soccer shoes on your feet each and every time you take the pitch.

Find the Right Cleats for the Pitch

By Soccer Garage

Ready for another season on the pitch? Perhaps you’re returning in the first time in a few years. Whatever the case, you most likely need a new pair of cleats. Even if you don’t, eventually your favorite pair will wear down and won’t be worth tying up anymore. When that happens, the following will help you replace them and get back to playing your best game.

It’s well known that Adidas soccer cleats are widely considered the best in the world. However, with so many Adidas soccer shoes to choose from, that knowledge might not do you any favors. Of course, some of you may prefer other brands too.

In any case, you should make it a habit to regularly measure your feet. Even if you’re an adult who has stopped growing, you may have found that your feet have gotten winder. It takes all of two seconds and doing so will make all the difference in picking the right cleats.

After you know your size, start looking online at reviews. Then go find the shoes at local stores. For best results, see if one of your teammates has shoes you can try out in your size. Seeing what they feel like once they’ve been broken in can make a huge difference.