May 19, 2023
US Youth Soccer and etrainu have launched two new courses through the USYS University. The TOPSoccer Buddy and TOPSoccer Coach courses are now available for premium USYS University users.
US Youth Soccer TOPSoccer (The Outreach Program for Soccer) is a recreational sports program for children and adults with intellectual, emotional, or physical disabilities offered only through local US Youth Soccer-affiliated soccer clubs. TOPSoccer provides people with diverse abilities an opportunity to play soccer in a structured environment that is safe, fun, supportive, and inclusive.
Within the TOPS framework, there are buddies and coaches. These two new courses are centered around these roles.
Each participant is assigned a volunteer, trained ‘Buddy’ who is typically a little older and neurotypical. This Buddy works with their player individually and makes sure they are safe, engaged, supported, and having fun. The player-Buddy relationship is maintained throughout the course of a season, resulting in strong interpersonal bonds and an establishment of trust and confidence that allows each player to achieve their full potential.
TOPSoccer coaches and administrators have taken formal USYS education and certification training that assists them in successfully delivering the program. In addition to providing coaching strategies and tactics specifically for children with special needs, the training identifies the traits of the most common disabilities and provides guidance on how to modify typical soccer practice activities so everyone can be successful.
The TOPSoccer Buddy and Coach courses are both accessible as self paced learning through the USYS University premium library. Users can sign up to USYS University here for free and pay a small annual subscription for access to the premium library.
About TOPSoccer Buddy
The TOPSoccer Buddy course teaches volunteers how to support children with disability. Learners will gain an understanding of the different types of disabilities and how to engage children with disability respectfully.
About TOPSoccer Coach
In addition to providing coaching strategies and tactics specifically for children with special needs, the training identifies the traits of the most common disabilities and provides guidance on how to modify typical soccer practice activities so everyone can be successful
To sign up for the USYS University, click here.