The Introductory Session
Staff: Those who assist at initial amputee soccer clinics may include medical and rehabilitation personnel, family, friends, able-bodied athletes, and even members of the clergy.
Organizers should interview and screen those individuals very carefully.
Those who express pity for the prospective athletes, those who tend to patronize and those who are repelled by limb loss of birth defects - even in the slightest - should be thanked for their concern, but should not be allowed to participate in the introductory process.
Those attending start-up clinics must be treated as iprospective athletes being introduced into a new form of competition - not as "disabled" individuals being given something to play at.
Should pity, patronizing, or revulsion be expressed, even in the slightest, the program will fail.
The athletes who feel themselves the targets of any of these expressions will respond with quiet, or occasionally open contempt for those who consider them "less than."
Experienced coaches and players may make deal clinic staff members - if they treat the prospective with the respect and expectation of hard work and discipline as in any other try-out camp.
Notification and Recruitment
All media channels can and should be used to help promote introductory clinics. Channels may include radio and television public service announcements, radio talk shows, TV news segments, newspaper articles and notices.
Flyers, posters and broadsides can be posted in public places, hospitals, rehab centers, community centers and in appropriate locations at or near religions centers.
Notification messages are particularly effective when delivered not by medical, religious or governmental spokespersons, but by high profile athletes well known to the target audience.
The English have been particularly successful building local programs around members of the English National Amputee Soccer Team. In areas building a program from scratch, a well known soccer player or a former athlete with limb loss would be an ideal recruiting spokesperson.
The recruiting message should be strong, upbeat and include the concept that single leg soccer is a world-wide event with it's own World Cup.
Introductory clinics should be staged in areas set away from casual passers-by and idle spectators. Some new amputees may extremely self-conscious about their physical configuration and may be shy about appearing in public.
As much as anything else, the area should be away from casual observers because no one appreciates spectators when trying something new for the first time.
Please Note: Association policies allow the invitation of trusted media to introductory events for background information only - not for photography, video or publication.
Running the Clinic
Introduction: The clinic leader - preferably an amputee - should introduce himself, and should speak with the strong attitude of introducing a new form of soccer to prospective athletes - some of whom may become members of a national team and competitors in world class tournaments.
Brief History of the Sport: The game was invented by an amputee in the USA in 1980 and is now played in nearly 30 countries around the world. The sport is recognized by FIFA and is working to be considered as a Paralympic Gold Medal Sport.
International competitions are held every year. The Amputee Soccer World Cup World is held every two years. The best teams in the world are currently Uzbekistan, Russia, Argentina and Turkey.
Rules: Give the prospective players a brief over view of the rules, the most important of which are:
A smaller pitch + / - 60 x 40 meters.
A smaller goal 2 meters high x 5 meters wide x 1 meter deep.
Players must be "abbreviated" at the wrist or ankle.
Outfielders may have only one functioning leg, goal keepers may have only one functioning arm.
Players with birth defects are allowed to play.
No prosthetics are allowed on the playing field.
Players are not allowed to use the residual limb to control or direct the ball.
Players may not use the crutch to control or direct the ball. But if the crutch is on the ground
and the ball hits it, it is inadvertent contact and play continues.
Any use of the crutch as a weapon is an immediate red card.
Kick-ins, not throw-ins.
No offsides rule.
Unlimited substitutions - at stoppages.
Please see: Rules for more details and exceptions.
Please note: The international game is 6 x 6 plus keeper. But for developmental purposes teams may be 3 x 3, 4 x 4, 5 x 5 or 6 x 6 plus keeper.
Explain that the clinic will begin with basic ball handling after which scrimmages will be held.
Go to Basic Ball Handling
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