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Coaching the U12 Player

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In order to make practices run smoothly and be fun, it is important for us to have a basic understanding of the intellectual, emotional and physical developmental stage of the players we are coaching. Here are some typical characteristics of the Under 12 player:
  • Children are growing and developing at different rates and are sensitive to that fact.
  • Performance evaluation and competition between peers becomes prevalent.
  • Typically understand basic abstract ideas and hypothetical situations. Tactical concepts become real.
  • They like to solve problems. Let the game pose problems and let the players solve them.
  • Technical skills still need to be reinforced constantly.
  • Players should be encouraged to take chances – to play out of their comfort zone.
  • Overuse injuries can occur more frequently.
  • Players become more invested in the game and in their team. Foster leadership


Below are links to Sample Training Sessions designed specifically for the U12 Player.

US Youth Soccer

Massachusetts Youth Soccer

Under the guidance of Technical Director, Ian Mulliner, the full-time coaching staff of Massachusetts Youth Soccer publishes a series of youth soccer lesson plans each season. These lesson plans take the developmental stages of children into account and are organized by age group.  These lesson plans are the results of years of developing curricula and hundreds of hours of practical coaching experience. We are presenting these Lesson plans with the permission of Massachusetts Youth Soccer and with extreme gratitude for their dedication and commitment to teaching the game in a fun and safe environment.

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