An Academy can be defined as a place of higher learning and a school for special training. The VSI-Pinellas Recreational Academy will try to be both. The players will meet once a week (day to be determined) for a one hour session of instruction and fun. The emphasis will be on the individual player. Each child will receive instruction on the basic soccer moves needed to become a successful player. The sessions will be run by qualified coaches and former collegiate players. All players will receive a ball, as part of their uniform package, so that they will be able to practice their skills at home as well as at practice.
Open soccer will be the game day format used to help each player be successful. Open soccer uses no throw-ins, goalkicks, corner kicks or free kicks. These concepts are very hard for the young player. Instead, the Parent Facilitator will throw in a new ball for them to play with. The game consists of three 6 minute periods. Each team plays with 3 players, no substitutes. This allows the maximum amount of time for touches with the ball. More touches equates to improved skills. More touches with the ball, plus improved skills equates to more fun.
The Recreational Soccer Academy has proved successful in other parts of the country. This program was put in place by our previous Recreational Director of Coaching, Steve Jameson, and our belief is that it is the best method of teaching the skills of the sport to the young player.