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Elmwood Park AYSO Region 1303


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Club Guidelines and Rules

Club Rules of Engagement

Elmwood Park Club Soccer - ECSA Rules of Engagement for Coaches, Players, and Families

Elmwood Park Club Soccer - ECSA was founded on AYSO philosophies and believes that all coaches, players, and families should be accountable for following our guidelines and rules.  Below are sections that lay out the rules and answer some common questions for each group.

As a club soccer arm of AYSO, we follow four of the six AYSO Philosophies.

Positive Coaching
 – A coach can be one of the most influential people in a player’s life, so Elmwood Park Club Soccer - ECSA requires they create a positive experience for every player in Elmwood Park Club Soccer - ECSA. Additionally, encouraging player’s effort leads to greater enjoyment, improved skills and stronger motivation in players.

Good Sportsmanship – We strive to create a positive environment based on mutual respect rather than a win-at-all-costs attitude, and our programs are designed to instill good sportsmanship in every facet of Elmwood Park Club Soccer - ECSA.

Player Development – All players should be able to develop their soccer skills and knowledge to the best of their abilities, both individually and as members of a team, to maximize their enjoyment of the game.

Everyone Plays – Elmwood Park Club Soccer - ECSA’s goal is for kids to play soccer, so we mandate that every player on every team must play at least 50 percent of every game, providing they have made every required team session.


For Coaches

Coaching for the Elmwood Park Club Soccer - ECSA can be an exciting opportunity, but it also carries with it some obligations. Now that you are a member of our team, here are the basic rules we expect you to follow:

  • Place the emotional and physical well being of my players ahead of a personal desire to win

  • Respect the integrity and personality of the individual athlete, remembering the large range of emotions and physical development for the same age group

  • Exemplify the highest moral character, behavior and leadership. Adhere to strong ethical and integrity standards

  • Know the rules of the game and teach them in letter and spirit

  • Set a good example for players and spectators. Refrain from:

    • Arguments in front of your team and parents

    • Gestures indicating an official or opposing coach does not know what they are doing or talking about

    • Throwing objects in disgust

    • Shake hands with opposing coaches and officials before and after each match

    • Respect the integrity of the official. By giving respect, you get respect

    • Do not use profanity or other objectionable language

    • Be responsible for your players and parents on the sideline

    • Make sportsmanship your first priority

  • Every player will play at least 50% of the time as long as they are attending required team events and participating actively
  • Is responsible for all players and parents during a game.  If a parent or spectator is displaying inappropriate behavior they will take action to immediately curtail this behavior and provide a report to Elmwood Park Club Soccer - ECSA leadership immediately following the conclusion of the game


For Players

Playing for the Elmwood Park Club Soccer - ECSA can be an exciting opportunity, but it also carries with it some obligations. Now that you are a member of one of our teams, here are the basic rules we expect you to follow:

  • You will play for the fun of it!! Play the game for the game’s sake, and not just to please my parents or coach.
  • Respect the game of soccer and its laws, learn these laws and try to follow them, and play the game fairly.
  • You will make every effort to attend all practices and games. Some conflicts are inevitable, but they should be rare.
  • If you are unable to attend a practice or game, you will let your coach know in advance.
  • You will come prepared physically and mentally to training sessions and matches.
  • You will show up for practices and games on time and with the proper uniform and equipment.
  • You will exhibit good sportsmanship at all times, remembering that you are representing Elmwood Park Club Soccer - ECSA at all times. If you win, you can be happy and celebrate, but you may not speak or act boastfully. If you lose, you may be disappointed, but you may not act angrily.
  • You will not use foul or inappropriate language at any time.  Use of foul or inappropriate language will result in immediate removal from game or practice.
  • You will treat the referees with respect. If you criticize a referee’s decision, you can expect to be immediately removed from the game and to sit the remainder of that game.
  • You will offer support and encouragement to your teammates. It is the coach’s job, not yours, to point out their mistakes.  Negative behavior toward teammates will result in immediate removal from the game.
  • You will wish opponents good luck before the game and congratulate them in a courteous manner following victory or defeat.
  • You will shake hands with the other team and the official(s) after the game.
  • You will try to improve your soccer skills by practicing on your own and with your friends as often as possible.


For Families

Having a family member playing for the Elmwood Park Club Soccer - ECSA can be an exciting opportunity, but it also carries with it some obligations. Now that you and your family are a member of our team, here are the basic rules we expect you to follow:

  • Be your players biggest supporter, the coach will work with the player to correct any issues, your job is to encourage
  • You will not yell at your player in the car after the game
  • Give only positive feedback to players
  • You will not criticize the referee openly or directly, during or after games, any questions shall be made in writing, sent to my coach and/or my club representative, not verbally
  • Will follow the 24 hour rule for addressing any issues with the coach
  • Cheer at all games within the spirit of fair play and shall do our best to cheer the effort regardless of the outcome, be mindful in “lopsided” game where cheering our own “winning” team might be misunderstood
  • Do our best to teach our players to become students of the game
  • Show the quality of our sportsmanship during and after each game and help our child remember to thank the referee after the match without regard to the result
  • Have your child prepared and on time for every game and practice
  • Support the learning efforts of the players, the coaches, and the referees by demonstrating our patience
  • Understand that improper behavior at a game may result in a parent being asked to leave the field by the referee, coach, or a club official so the coach does not receive a yellow card caution or a red card ejection due to the action of the parent spectator
  • Leave the coaching to the coach during the game, you will not give any child instructions during the game
  • Understand that the leagues can, and will if necessary, suspend our individual privilege to watch our child play should we behave in a manner that is rude or otherwise offensive
  • Agree to do our best to have as much fun watching the game as the players should have playing the game
  • Abuse of coaches, referees, players, volunteers, or anyone else, whether verbal, in writing or in email will not be tolerated


Who do I contact?

  • Questions about the club – Todd Nettelhorst
  • Questions about the location or time of a game – Team Parent
  • Questions about what uniform or shirt to wear to a game or practice – Team Parent
  • Who do I inform if I am missing an event – Coach
  • Who do I speak to about playing time or other game related questions – Coach after the 24 hour waiting period has passed 
    • DO NOT address issues with the coach on game day
    • Minor issues should begin with the player speaking to the coach, especially at U10 and above
  • Who do I speak to if I disagree with what the coach has told me – Terry Gordon, Todd Nettelhorst
  • Questions about scholarships or players in need of assistance – Todd Nettelhorst
  • Questions about volunteering to help at the club – Todd Nettelhorst
  • Questions about extra sessions or rescheduling a missed practice – Coach


Frequently Asked Questions

  • Why do we do some Winter practices in gyms and not on turf?
    • Elmwood Park Club Soccer - ECSA believes that playing futsal is a nice variation from soccer year round
    • Futsal is different to soccer in that it forces the player to have more close control of the ball and encourages the player to use all surfaces of the foot to implement control
    • Kick and chase methods that some players find success with outdoors will not work on a gym floor, forcing players to expand their skill set
    • Turf time is significantly more expensive than gym time, so this helps keep your club fees down
  • Why is there a 24 hour contact rule for asking a coach about a game?
    • To allow the parents time to calm down after the issue has developed
    • To allow the coach time to follow his normal procedure after the competition, this is for all players benefit
    • Give parents and coaches time to think about the problem
    • To prevent any unnecessary acts or scenes in front of players, other parents, and the other team
    • Calmer heads will prevail
    • To stop any embarrassing moments in front of the players or spectators
    • The hope that time to think about the issues will help to solve the problem in a positive manner and with the correct positive resolution


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Elmwood Park AYSO

PO BOX 350047 
Elmwood Park, Illinois 60707

Email Us: [email protected]
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