Saturday, May 26, 2018

At a glance

  • Team sports provide kids with important lessons on personal values.
  • Children who play team sports are less likely to feel isolated.
  • Team sports can encourage parents to become active with their kids.
  • Team sports help kids deal with winning and losing.
  • Team sports can help kids overcome shyness.

If you want your child to grow up to be a confident and well-adjusted adult, then team sports may well be the answer.

"When you play a team sport you learn that it doesn't just come down to the best player," says Ross Morrison, a sports expert with the Department of Education.

"It comes down to working as a team, accepting decisions and understanding that people have different abilities."

Learning about values

Playing a team sport provides kids with important lessons in personal values, Ross says. "Kids learn that things aren't going to go their way all the time, and that they need to respect their peers as well as referees and sports officials."

These experiences can influence them throughout their lives such as when it comes to working for a boss, or respecting the police or other authority figures.

Kids learn that things aren't going to go their way all the time, and that they need to respect their peers

Team sports can also be good for a child's mental health. Children who play team sports learn how to be more resilient when presented with a setback, and are less likely to feel isolated, Ross says.

"Society puts a lot of pressure on kids to be more academic," he says. 

"But there is evidence to suggest that physical activity might increase numeracy and literacy. It's like that adage, ‘a healthy body, a healthy mind'."

When your kids take part in team sports they develop:

  • friendship and camaraderie
  • cooperation and teamwork skills
  • leadership skills
  • appreciation of different abilities
  • respect for team mates/ opponents/officials
  • a sense of belonging/team membership
  • social interaction skills
  • physical skills
  • self-esteem and self-concept
  • team goal-setting skills
  • self-discipline, patience and persistence
  • resilience through sharing positive and negative experiences.

Getting active (together)

With so much research emphasizing the benefits of getting more exercise rather than being a couch potato, knowing their child is involved in team sports can put a parent's mind at ease.

"It's satisfying for parents to know that your kids are getting fit and healthy instead of just playing electronic games or watching television," says Ross.

"But as well as the social side of standing around with other parents and making friendships, there can be a spin off too," he says. 

"Sometimes parents look at their kids running around and think, ‘Maybe we can get together and do something like that, too'."    

Teams sports give kids the opportunity to:

  • be less selfish and to think of other people
  • deal with losing as well as winning. They learn that things are not going to go their way, or the team's way, all the time
  • overcome shyness by putting them into situations where they need to communicate with others
  • become more sociable in different environments. They must deal with different people, who may or may not be their friends.

The ABC's of Physical Literacy

In the same way that children learn their alphabet as a stepping stone to reading and becoming literate, children should also develop their physical skills to become physically literate. Canadian Sport for Life defines being physically literate as a child having learned basic human movements, fundamental movement skills, and introductory sports skills before the start of their adolescent growth spurt. Three critical physical skills to develop are known as the ABCs of physical literacy: Agility, Balance and Coordination. Parents are welcome to download this Active Start physical literacy flyer.  

Learn more about Gulf Coast Soccer programs for 3-6 years olds, please visit our program pages listed below: 

Registration for the Spring 2018 Soccer Season is Open


The Board of Directors decided this summer to create an in-house staff position to manage the concession for the club. Our goal was to improve the quality of the food, improve the menu choices, and to make the concession stand a place where our members look forward to stopping by before or after a game.

We are very excited to announce Scott and Tina Legendre of Groves Café are joining our club staff to manage the new and improved concession stand. They have been working over the summer to create a new menu, set the club up with quality food suppliers and planning for the fall season. Scott and Tina have a strong commitment to supporting our community and the Gulf Coast Youth Soccer Club. Tina played here as child and loves soccer. They will be great a great addition to our team. We sat down with them to learn more about what our members can look forward to and why they chose to get involved at Gulf Coast Soccer…

Scott and Tina, 

Many of us grew up playing sports and visiting the concession stand for a snack, treat or a meal after our game was a big part of the fun. What kind of menu can our membership expect this season?

There are certain foods you look for when you go to a ball-park concession stand, and we plan to have those available. However, at the same time, it is important to promote healthy options for the kids and adults, so we will have some healthy alternatives as well. For example, we’ll be serving breakfast tacos and muffins as part of our breakfast fair. Alternatively, you can select healthy oatmeal or a fruit cup. We will also be carrying Groves Café signature coffee and cold brew to get the morning started off right. For lunch, we’ll have pulled pork or chopped beef sandwiches, hotdogs, nachos, and Frito pie or grilled chicken sandwiches for a healthier alternative. Once we get a new grill installed we will begin offering homemade hamburgers. Look for special items to appear occasionally to change things up from time to time.

Read more: Groves Café to Manage the Club Concession Stand

Gulf Coast Soccer is pleased to release our Parents Handbook for 2017. This handbook includes important information about our club that will help you get the most out of your child's soccer experience inlcuding:  

Read more: Gulf Coast Soccer Parent Handbook 2017

At Gulf Coast Soccer we believe active kids are not only healthier and happier, but are also better positioned to do well in school. While we hope that all kids will explore and experience soccer during their youth, we also encourage kids to experiment with a variety of sports while they are young to enhance overall health and athletic development. Youth sports experts discourage specializing in a single sport before puberty. We agree! We also encourage kids to exepriment with a non-sports activities such as music, painting, dance or theatre. Activities such as scouting, volunteering, hunting and fishing also provide great platforms to support youth education and development. A healthy variety of activities keep kids active, engaged and encourages creativity. This page is intended to share useful information and articles relative to youth sports, overall health, education and development. We hope you enjoy! If you would like to contribute an article or suggest a future topic, please emal This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. 


Soccer can play an important role in a child’s physical and social development as it can increase speed and stamina while also teaching kids the importance of teamwork. Kids as young as 3 can participate, and soccer leagues are offered for children with different skill levels. Whether your child is lacing up their cleats for the first time or a pro who scores hat tricks nearly every game, the benefits of the world’s most popular competitive sport for kids are innumerable. Continue reading at


There are few sports which are popular and practiced all over the world. But no matter what country a child lives in, when a checkered ball is kicked towards them, they understand the message: Let’s play soccer! Pelé, Maradonna, Beckenbauer, Zidane, and Ronaldo have all achieved international superstardom with their magical footwork and skill. Children around the world wear jerseys with their hero’s name or number, and practice endlessly to perform the skillful ball tricks of their preferred star. According to the FIFA (Fédération Internationale de Football Association), 265 million people play soccer worldwide, making soccer arguable the favorite sport of all time, and definitely a childhood favorite.

The Multiple Lessons of Soccer

As young children develop motor skills, they are naturally drawn to the challenges of playing with, and controlling, a ball. And not only does soccer provide these challenges, but at the same time it develops endurance, strength, coordination skills, cognitive ability, and social lessons. And to play a good game of soccer, a child needs a positive attitude and tactical understanding of the games ebb and flow. Continue reading at

7 Reasons Soccer is Essential for Kids

Just about any sport or physical activity will help to develop physical literacy and good movement skills. However, if you had to pick one sport that developed the most skills and capacities, it would have to be soccer.

Even at the basic levels of development, physical literacy includes a long list of fundamental movement skills. The most essential of these — out of hundreds — are generally accepted to be running, jumping, throwing, catching, kicking, hopping, skipping, galloping, and dodging. These skills are based in turn on a foundation of physical capacities called the ABCs of movement: agility, balance, coordination, and speed.

Throw into the mix some spatial orientation skills and cognitive decision making, and you have most of what makes up physical literacy. Continue reading at

Insights to the Game - Micro Soccer Q&A

Our Micro Soccer program is a unique program that is aimed to meet the physical and social needs of 4-5 year olds through soccer. Children this age enjoy movement and action and lose interest and get bored quickly standing static. With the players being so young, still learning to interact with other kids and also in an ideal age to develop basic movement skills, we sat down with Technical Director Robert Parr to get some insight on the Micro Program and the age group in general. See the Q&A below or visit the Micro Program website for additional details.  

Q: What are our main goals for players in the Micro Soccer program?

Continue reading at