What is the purpose of Vermilion Soccer?
Vermilion Soccer is built around player participation. The Mini age levels (Ages 5-9) are progressive in skill development, and positioning. Teams are generally co-ed – there have been U10 girls teams in the past. All games/tournaments are “non-competitive”: all participants are recognized, each is allowed to participate as fully as they want or are able.
The Youth age levels compete in District Tier IV competition. Tier IV is non-selective, emphasis is on continued skill development within a team play environment. Players who show particular skill and desire can enhance their participation experience through more competitive Tier III and Tier II teams. Tier III teams are community based but can include players from other district towns. Tier II teams are currently organized and coached by District personnel (more information on Lakeland District Soccer can be found at www.lakelandsoccer.ca )
Why can't my child wear jewelry?
Included in the “Laws of the Game” is a restriction on jewelry. None is allowed to be worn on the field. Ideally the coaches will enforce this at practice so that it is not a surprise when a game is begun. Taping of jewelry is not allowed. The referee can exercise grace on two items:
Vermilion Soccer would suggest you refrain from getting any piercings for a month prior to the start of a season, and for the duration of the season. The referee can prohibit your child from playing; VSA will support the referees decision on this matter.
An extension of the rule also prohibits sweatbands/headbands. These rulings come down from FIFA, and are based on player safety through the competition of millions of players throughout the world.
How long does Soccer Run?
Spring (Outdoor) soccer typically runs from the last week of April to the last week of June (about 10 weeks). During this time the “Mini” soccer players (ages 5-9) have opportunity to learn new skills, play some inter-club (Vermilion) games, and perhaps play games against out of town teams. The “Youth” teams (ages 10-17) practice, and participate in a district league leading to Zone playdowns. Weekends from the end of May through the middle of June have Youth and Mini tournaments which teams may participate in if they choose. Teams which win the Zone competition have the opportunity to play at a provincial championship in July.
Indoor Soccer typically runs from the last week of September through the end of February. The Mini group(s) practice, play inter-squad games and occasionally travel to or host a fun-day to play other teams. The Youth teams participate in a district league leading to the Zone playdowns. Zone playdowns occur in February. Successful teams move on to Provincial competition held later in March.
Why do we register so early?
Vermilion Soccer begins outdoor registration in March to be able to declare the number of teams that will be playing during the on-field district league play portion of the season. We need to be ready with team alignments by the first week of April to allow District scheduling to be completed before the season begins in the first week of May. To encourage on-time registration, we charge a late fee for registrations received after the noted deadline (deadline varies year to year – typically first week in April). Having lots of time ahead also allows more Mini games to be scheduled with other district towns.
I paid the registration fee, what else is expected?
Outdoor soccer requires significant input from the entire participating group. With that in mind Vermilion Soccer requires that parents of players provide volunteer time – 6hrs/player for mini-age, 8hrs/player for youth. Volunteer time spent is recorded in a binder at the “Soccer Shack” (at the Provincial Park Fields). The “Volunteer Coordinator” reviews the hours and assesses whether the volunteer hour requirements have been met. Unmet obligations result in cashing of bond cheques. Our preference is for the volunteer hours to be provided, as there are many tasks that need taking care of (See outline list on registration form) and “many hands make light work”. We are sure there is something we need done that you can do, that will fit in your schedule.
There are a number of positions that are recognized as requiring a higher level of commitment to the association, and by actively participating in those positions the parent will be credited with meeting all volunteer hour requirements. Examples of these positions are: Coach, Executive member, Director/Coordinator Position – these positions typically bear the responsibility for a key aspect of the Soccer program and many extend over the entire calendar year.
Indoor Soccer is played indoors at local school gymnasiums or out of town in a variety of facilities. The physical tasks required to run the program are significantly less than outdoor, so volunteer hours/bond cheques are not required. There are still Coaching and manager positions to fill, and the coaches are usually open to help so don’t be afraid to step up.
Who/What is Lakeland District Soccer Association (LDSA)? and How does Vermilion Soccer Fit in?
Organized soccer in Alberta is supervised by the Alberta Soccer Association (ASA), this association is made up of a number of geographical districts covering the province. Lakeland District is the geographical region within which Vermilion resides. Lakeland District Soccer Association (LDSA) is the administrative group with oversight of soccer within our district. Our district extends west to Vegreville and Viking, north to Lac La Biche and Cold Lake, east to the Saskatchewan Border and south to Provost. LDSA provides an administrative interface with ASA for Community Member Associations within the District.
As many of the communities within our district are small, LDSA provides an organizational means to coordinate soccer throughout the district and ensure there are “real games” to be played across the age levels. This inter-community competition helps player and team development.
As many of the communities are small, all communities within the district have agreed that Tier II and higher competition will be run by the District only. This allows the communities to focus on Tier IV and V teams which do not require highly specialized coaching, and are inclusive in team structure. As Tier IV and V competition is generally complete by the end of June, communities with the interest still have the opportunity to develop Tier III teams that play through the summer.
Vermilion Soccer has a member position at District meetings. We are expected to provide feedback, insight, and direction to the LDSA board regarding district issues and ASA initiatives. Vermilion participates in the Youth league play to ensure game competition for our teams. Vermilion has historically hosted a portion of the outdoor Zone playdown.
More information about the District, board members, and member communities can be found at: www.lakelandsoccer.ca
What Events Does Vermilion Soccer Host?
During the outdoor season, Vermilion has historically hosted a Mini Tournament (late May). This tournament is a participatory tournament for Under-6 (ages ~4-5) Under 8 (ages ~6-7), Under 10 (ages ~8-9). Typically it is hosted on two days and has 50-60 teams participating.
In 2006 we held an inaugural 3vs3 tournament. We anticipate hosting this tournament in mid May on an ongoing basis.
The Outdoor Zone playdowns are typically split between Vermilion and St Paul. This tournament involves both boys and girls teams from within the district at Tier IV and Tier V level. These tournaments are held in the latter part of June.
Vermilion has also hosted the Provincial Tier IV tournaments for a number of age levels. This tournament usually occurs during the second week of July.
Vermilion has also one other tournament during the summer. In 2006 we hosted a Senior Tournament in July. In the past we had hosted a Tier II/III tournament in mid August. Declining participation in the “Harvest Classic” made it less than worthwhile to organize the event.
During the Indoor season Vermilion Soccer will host League play days where a specific age and gender group of District based teams each come to play scheduled games. Vermilion teams also travel to other towns for similar events.
What is the U4 (under-4) program?
During the outdoor season we run an introductory program for 2-1/2 to 3yr olds. The program operates one night a week and starts two weeks later than the regular soccer programs (after the last snowfall hopefully…). The purpose of the program is to introduce soccer skills to your toddler. Foot skills – dribble, pass, shoot are the dominant features of the program. Other emphasis can include group participation skills and responding to group directions. A parent/guardian (16yrs +) is required to attend with the player, but no other volunteer hours are required for this player. As this group is very young, game situation play is not implemented until near the end of the program at the discretion of the coach. (Success with this group is often measured by successful “sharing” of the game ball in a game context.) The wide spread of maturities within this group (up to 18months age differential, boy and girl mixed) means we can only offer this program once a week. Typically it is scheduled on a Monday which is a lower traffic night at the Soccer fields.
Where can I get more information on Soccer at the District and Provincial Level?
Alberta Soccer Association supervises organized soccer in Alberta. They have a comprehensive website at www.albertasoccer.com Website information includes lists of sanctioned competitions throughout the province, general/provincial competition rules, tournament hosting guidelines, administration contact information, player insurance information, Provincial competition results, coaching and refereeing course time and location information.
Lakeland Soccer District Association has oversight on our local district competition. They have a comprehensive website at www.lakelandsoccer.ca Website information includes League play schedules, District Executive Board member contact information, District member Community Association contact information, lists of locally offered coaching and referee courses.
What is the indoor program?
The indoor program starts in the local Arena (before the ice goes in) around the end of September, and moves into local gymnasiums near the end of October. The season runs nearly 5 months, so there is a little less intensity to the activity. Opportunity for tournaments are spread out through the season, but do require commitment from all team players to ensure teams play with enough players. Tournament competition (except zones) are funded by the team. District play is scheduled by late October, and is based on a home-and-home competition plan. With communities in the district having access to field-houses, the players are able to compete in a “standard” facility a number of times through the season. As well, the zone playdowns are able to be conducted in a “regulation” facility. Communities without field-houses play and practice in gymnasiums – perhaps learning stronger ball control skills.
As noted previously, there are less tasks to do for indoor, so parent volunteer time is not required – but if you see a task that needs doing, feel free to step up.
Our indoor program does rely on the good graces of the public schools who provide us with gym space to practice. As such, we are subject to their scheduling and occasionally have to cancel practice to allow for school events. We also require non-marking shoes to be worn in the gym’s – indoor soccer flats are perfect, but a cross-trainer, or court-shoe will suit the purpose nearly as well. Jogging shoes can hinder the fast direction changes required in the game, and ‘skater’ shoes also tend to be quite wide and loose – a hinderance to secure footing.
If you have other questions feel free to send an e-mail to any of the contacts listed on this website
What is futsal (pronounced foot-sol)?In 2011, the Vermilion Soccer Assocation adopted futsal as an alternative to indoor soccer, purchasing balls and nets specific to this sport. According to wikipedia:
Futsal is played between two teams of five players each, one of whom is the goalkeeper. Unlimited substitutions are permitted. Unlike some other forms of indoor football, the game is played on a hard court surface delimited by lines; walls or boards are not used. Futsal is also played with a smaller ball with less bounce than a regular football. The surface, ball and rules create an emphasis on improvisation, creativity and technique as well as ball control and passing in small spaces.