• Responding to a knee injury: When to immediately see a doctor or go to ER
    If you've just had a knee injury, now what? Do you need to go see a doctor or go to the emergency room immediately?
  • The clique factor -- how coaches can mix it up to make a stronger team
    When girls are put into a group where they don't have a social connection, they find ways to connect with each other.
  • The Accidental Ref asks: How and why did you start?
    I was 15 years old when one of my soccer coaches, Gordon Barr (son of U.S. Soccer Hall of Famer George Barr), called me up and wanted to know if I would like to become an intramural ref in the soccer club I was playing for, the Syosset Soccer Club on Long Island. I declined as I thought who would want to become a ref as that person is yelled at and booed.
  • Do you need an MRI to diagnose an ACL tear?
    Let me start this off with the short answer: a skilled sports knee surgeon has about a 90% chance of diagnosing an ACL tear based off the type of injury and the examination of the knee. So in the vast majority of injuries to the ACL, we use MRIs to confirm what we already suspect.
  • A soccer parent for 20 years: What I'll miss most
    In the pre-dawn damp and cold of a Saturday morning in the fall of 2016, as I drove on a county road south of Atlanta, with my 17-year-old son half asleep in the passenger seat, I understood how much I would miss it.
  • Here's the best part of U.S. Soccer revamping its grassroots coaching courses
    Three years after introducing a new $25 online F license course, U.S. Soccer has again revamped its coaching license pathway.
  • A wonderful side of soccer -- helping kids feel like they belong
    Gerardo Mercado is a 19-year-old Salvadoran who arrived to the United States in 2013, just before the height of the United States' unaccompanied minor crisis -- when tens of thousands of children and youth began crossing our southern border without papers or parents, looking, like Gerardo was, for safety and a chance to start anew.
  • Concussion study indicates higher risk for females -- another reminder for coaches to review recognition protocols
    There is some very good evidence out of Columbia University in New York that women are in fact more likely to sustain a concussion than men, however their recovery times are similar (both took about 14 days).
  • Referees should get a vote! And a rulebook would be nice
    The best way to figure out who's going to be voting for U.S. Soccer Federation President on Feb. 10 is to read Paul Kennedy's article, "Nuts and bolts: How U.S. Soccer's presidential election will work."
  • The Importance of Being an Assistant Referee
    I started refereeing in New York in 1978. One of the things that was interesting about refereeing is it was very much an individual pursuit for me as nearly all games in New York in the 1970s and 1980s, with the exception of semifinal and final games, plus a few other notable games, were officiated by one referee with the help of two club linesmen, who simply raised the flag when the ball was over the touchline.
  • How to navigate your child's path
    The choice of where to have your child play youth soccer can be very difficult. Multiple clubs, "select teams," or leagues will tout their services or programs, often with promises of glory down the road. There is no shortage of choices for where your child can spend the next year of development - and in the United States, parents have more choice than in any other country.
  • Honor the innate desire of children to learn through play
    Sometimes as coaches we ignore universal truths.
  • Should you play sports when you're sick?
    We're in that time of year when people start sneezing and coughing all around you. It's pretty easy to catch a cold or sinus congestion to generally make you feel lousy. And at the same time your team continues to practice and play games.
  • Advice for young referees -- and a plea to the adults who scream at them
    I was asked to give some words of encouragement to young refs who would be refereeing their club's intramural games. The refs were from 10 to 14 years old and they ref players age 6 to 12. Two refs to a game, one on each touchline, on small-sided fields, the largest which is 65 x 35 yards.
  • Let your kids play soccer in the house -- with small balls
    When I went to China to coach 6-year-old kids in a pilot program at five elementary schools in Beijing, I wanted to see what they were doing before I started with my contribution. All the kids had a big ball. Wrong!
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