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The site navigation utilizes arrow, enter, escape, and space bar key commands. Left and right arrows move across top level links and expand / close menus in sub levels. Up and Down arrows will open main level menus and toggle through sub tier links. Enter and space open menus and escape closes them as well. Tab will move on to the next part of the site rather than go through menu items.

Coaches Perspective

COACHES PERSPECTIVE - FEBRUARY/MARCH, 2022                    


Dear VSA Community,


The heart of Vermont Soccer and our “secret sauce,” if you will, are the coaches and administrators who care deeply about our players and are willing to go the extra mile to support and encourage our young people.  Apart from my parents and family, my coaches have done the most to shape my life. In athletics, we now understand – and the research shows – the important role coaches play in our child’s lives.


Think back to your favorite coach. Chances are that you remember how the coach cared about you and supported you personally in your development.  Maybe the coach challenged you in a motivating way; maybe the coach gave you the break you needed; or maybe the coach simply touched your heart. Our players need these kinds of coaches more than ever as we continue to navigate the challenges of today’s world both on and off the field.


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Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do – Pele


Coaching Education  For those interested in upcoming Coaching Education courses… 

Courses are added throughout the year. If you're interested in engaging in coaching education, I would recommend reaching out to your club’s Director of Coaching or myself. I’ve included a link below to the VSA Coaching Course page where you can find more information. Member clubs of Vermont Soccer interested in hosting a course for your coaches can also reach out to me at Courses coming in April!


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US Soccer Coaching Education

This free introductory module, which represents the first step in the newly revised coaching license pathway, is now the general starting point of the pathway and is the required prerequisite to undergo any of U.S. Soccer's Grassroots Licensing Courses. Coaches who complete the module will also be provided with four complimentary Play-Practice-Play training sessions.


The module takes approximately 20 minutes to complete and can be found HERE.


Here is some information on using guided discovery in your coaching, the slanty line theory, the flow concept, Expansion – Equalization – Interactive Challenge, as well as Dr. Marianne Torbert’s movement analysis. For this month’s coaching exercise, I’d encourage each of our coaches to take a moment to reflect on the different theories in this LINK.


US Youth Soccer and Florida State University Launching Program to Help Soccer Education - General News - News | US Youth Soccer 

FRISCO, Texas (February 22, 2022) – US Youth Soccer (USYS) is forging a partnership with Florida State University (FSU) to have its FSU COACH program serve as a coach education provider. USYS Director of Sport and Member Development Tom Condone made the announcement Tuesday. FSU COACH -- Florida ... .


Don’t miss these FREE courses brought to you by USYS University and FSU Coach, March 28 - 31. All you have to do is tune in to's the schedule.


Mental Health Resources from US Soccer

During this unprecedented time of the Coronavirus Pandemic, our lives have been disrupted. Training, playing and even watching sports is different in our current landscape. This crisis can cause negative impacts on our mental and emotional well being. It is important to be aware of the impact this can have on our health so we can help ourselves. Self-care and knowledge of resources that are available are helpful in times of crisis.


Athletes are just as likely to suffer from mental health issues as non-athletes. The very nature of sport can bring about psychological issues in athletes, even though participation in athletics has many benefits. It is important to understand the signs of mental health disorders and how to address them to limit impact on participation in sport and daily life.

Creating a safe and inclusive environment involves being able to recognize and refer individuals who may be struggling with mental health issues. Below is a resource, which will be part of an education course, geared towards helping coaches, referees, administrators, and parents understand the importance of awareness of mental health issues amongst their athletes, the importance of creating a safe and inclusive environment, and resources to refer individuals to access the help they may need.


Click HERE for Mental health resources for athletes, parents, and coaches.


If you are going to coach, here are a few requirements for all adults working with children. Please feel free to contact the VSA office (802) 857-5703 with questions or concerns.



1) Your Club Administrator will have created a coaches account on your behalf.  Log into using your email address tied to your coaches account. You will be directed to your account Dashboard when you are successfully logged in. 

2) You will see the three requirements to be completed (Background Check, SafeSport and Heads Up).  Once each are completed, the requirement button will turn green.   

3) Be very careful with the background check.  Some boxes are auto-populated with information that is not necessarily correct to answer that question.  Read carefully. 


CDC HEADS UP CONCUSSION TEST Changing the Culture of Concussion Starts with You!

You can improve the culture of concussion by taking this free online training and using what you learn to inform how you talk about, prevent, and respond to concussions. Your actions can help create a safe environment for young athletes so that they can stay healthy, active, and thrive – both on and off the playing field.

1) While in your Coach Account, right above the Background Check you will find Heads Up.

2) Click on the CDC Heads Up Concussion Course to complete this component.

HeadsUp Concussion certification is valid for one year.



US Youth Soccer is a National Affiliate member of the national governing body for the sport of soccer in the United States, the U.S. Soccer Federation (U.S. Soccer). U.S. Soccer has developed the Safe Soccer Framework as a foundation from which all participants in the soccer community, be they athletes, coaches, referees, administrators, or volunteers, play an active role in creating an environment free from emotional, physical or sexual abuse. The Safe Soccer Framework is a comprehensive program of policies and process, screening, education and training, reporting, monitoring and enforcement designed to help participants detect and report abuse, respond to it, and prevent future occurrences.

Again, while in your Coach Account, you can access the SafeSport Training.  This is found on the main page of your account.  Please be sure to complete ALL modules offered. SafeSport Training is valid for one year.

Report a concern:
(312) 528-7004 or click here.



SafeSport training and parent toolkit:



USYS ODP – Vermont

Congratulations to Liam Weldon (2007) on his selection to the USYS ODP National Team Camp in January.

See more on Kickin’ It with the Big Boys  HERE

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Kickin’ It with the Big Boys

Essex freshman soccer player Liam Weldon plays with the U.S. U-14 Boys National Team


Winter training is happening! ODP Players are continuing to connect twice a month through April. Vermont ODP tryouts are fast approaching. The opportunity tryout is available to all players in Vermont.



  • Provide supplemental player development and identification programming for Vermont’s most committed and competitive youth players



  • Co-exist harmoniously with club programming through aligned schedules, active communication, and on-going collaboration

  • Provide supplemental training, education, and identification opportunities to maximize the development of Vermont’s elite youth players

  • Provide a clear national pathway to collegiate and professional soccer





2008-2011 ODP Tryouts, April 10 and 24 and 2005-2007 ODP Tryouts April 24 at Shelburne Fieldhouse.

To find out more about Vermont ODP 2021-2022 and how to participate in the upcoming cycle click here.


- John

John Curtis, Vermont Soccer Director of Coaching – US Soccer A license, youth coach, high school coach, college coach, coaching instructor, and parent.

​Director of Coaching John will provide the Vermont Soccer Community with his perspective monthly on important events, ideas and initiatives that impact players, parents, coaches and families (current and past).