Posted: December 3rd, 2012 | Author: Rian | Filed under: Development, Philosophy, Soccer Shots Team | No Comments »
(Guest post from Alyssa McGarigal, Lead Coach, Soccer Shots Los Angeles)
Back in the beginning of October, I started class taking attendance, and asking the kids, “If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go?” I got a few expected DisneyLands, a couple of kids said the beach, and two blew me away… One little boy, about 4 years old said, “To 7-11, and get a slushie.” Another little girl, same age, said, “To a field of flowers, and go picking.”
Too often, as adults, I feel like we forget the little things. I am out there to have fun with the kids, without a doubt.
But I’m often doing upwards of 10 things at once: I am a coach, a referee, a conflict resolver, a friend, a big kid, a nurse, a hug, a deep breath…
I try to be the best part of each and every kid’s day, in whatever way they need me to be. For some it’s the soccer, the games, the exercise, for others it’s the conversation, the high fives, the stickers or the stamps…
Towards the end of October, I experienced one of the hardest days I have ever experienced, and will probably be one of the hardest throughout my future career. We had a tragedy at the Elementary School I am interning at as a School Counselor. I walked out of school that day mentally and emotionally drained. I got in my car, and I drove to the park where I had about 10 minutes before my Soccer Shots class. I set up, I got ready, and I kept telling myself, I can do this.
It wasn’t until the kids got there, we circled up, and we started talking that I felt a little better. We raced across the field for warm up, we hopped around, we made animal noises, little by little, I started to forget the day that I just had.
The exercise and endorphins, the laughter, the silliness, and happiness of this group of kids were heartwarming. All these things were the little things I needed at the end of a really tough day. Soccer Shots was my field of flowers, my slushie, that day.
In my year and a half with Soccer Shots, I have learned so much! I have gained so much respect and understanding for teachers who spend an entire day with our kids. I have learned an incredible amount from each group of kids: their perspective of the world, their culture, the things that are important to them. I have learned how to be a better teacher, coach, mentor, and person.
Whether it’s a field of flowers, a slushie, some exercise, or hopping around like a frog yelling “RIBBIT” at the top of your lungs; I have been reminded to take time and reflect on the little things, make the best out of any situation, and enjoy life. That’s why I do what I do, and why I coach for Soccer Shots; each class has some “little things” for everyone involved.
Posted: November 22nd, 2012 | Author: andy | Filed under: Philosophy, Soccer Shots Team | Tags: Remarkable | No Comments »
I would like to share with you all, the great things a parent had to say about our coaching staff. Truly remarkable!
Last week I was doing a 1 on 1 training session with a 3 year old boy for about 45 mins.
As I arrive the site the father approaches me and says, ” We don’t use words like good job, if you know what I mean.” I looked up at him and said “I do understand what you mean.” (In my mind, I thought, mmmm very interesting). I had to switch my style of coaching without doing so much positive praising.
So after having a day of coaching in the AM I had already dropped like 100 “good jobs” to children from the AM sessions. So it was a little tough to not say “good job” to the 3 year old boy. Of course I dropped like 20 “good jobs” in the 45 minutes. Lol.
Now, the child also attends our Cheviot Hills park program on Saturday mornings.
The 1 on 1 session was successful and as I chat with the mom of the 3 year old boy she had many nice things to say about Soccer Shots.
The parent said that we prefers Soccer Shots over another intro to soccer program that they had tried because, in her opinion the Soccer Shots coaches know exactly what they are doing. The child had a season with this other program but did not enjoy it.
She went on to mention,
“Coach Alyssa is a great coach and teacher out there, she brings great energy to every session and my child has fun with her, I am happy to see that you guys teach more than soccer, you teach great values and skills that will be used in life.”
“Coach Charlie is great with the children as well and brings fun energy to every session.”
Great job out there coaches!!! You know you are doing something right when someone makes a remark about you.
Keep up the great job out there coaches and remember, the #1 rule is to have FUN!!
Posted: April 16th, 2012 | Author: Rian | Filed under: Soccer Shots Team | No Comments »
Danny was born and raised in the San Fernando Valley and has been playing soccer since the age of 5. AYSO is were it all started, ever since the first day he first stepped onto the soccer field, it was love at first sight.
He has played in various soccer clubs including for his high school. Soccer has been a great influence on his life and has taught him great life skills, including commitment, teamwork, and responsibility that he uses to this day.
Danny is currently a junior CSUN, majoring in criminology.
“Soccer has helped me so much throughout my life, I am always willing to give back to the community, especially to our youth. And what better way then through the sport of soccer.”
Danny is excited to share his passion for soccer and to be a part of Soccer Shots.
Posted: April 16th, 2012 | Author: Rian | Filed under: Clubs, Partnerships, Soccer, Soccer Shots Team, Updates | No Comments »
Soccer Shots SoCal (LA, OC, SD) representing at the Galaxy v Timbers game on Saturday night!
Thank you to all of our families that joined us, and to the Los Angeles Soccer Academy for organizing the evening. What a great game and final goal by Beckham!!!
Posted: April 9th, 2012 | Author: Rian | Filed under: Soccer Shots Team, Updates | No Comments »
Lately, we have been very fortunate to experience an extremely positive response from preschools in the south bay and have been invited into a number of new schools! With this comes the need for new, yet experienced individuals to join our team! We have been searching for a coach for some time but have not been willing to settle on just anyone to coach for us. We are very particular about who we select to join our team. The search has ended and we are excited to introduce Phil Bendik!
Coach Phil is delighted to join the Soccer Shots team.
With over 20 years of youth sports coaching and mentoring, he is excited to share is experience and help mold the young lives of today so that they can become confident future leaders.
His passion for working with youth programs was realized years ago when he began working with the Torrance Recreation Department. He has enjoyed supervising sports programs, summer camps and even teaching pre-school! There’s no doubt that his time spent working with kids helped prepare him for fatherhood as he is a proud Dad to four wonderful children. Ranging in ages from 15 to 5, he spends as much time as possible playing, listening and laughing (the list could go on and on) with his kids.
When not on the field or spending time with his family, Phil enjoys classic movies, reading and witty conversation. In 2001, he caught the triathlon bug and soon after, completed his first Ironman in Coeur d’Alene, ID. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Organizational Leadership from Biola University and is in the process of beginning his master’s degree in Clinical Psychology.
Thankful for the many opportunities and accomplishments that have come his way, Coach Phil is truly inspired by the success of others.
“There is no greater feeling than watching someone else cross that finish line and accomplishing their goals.”
Posted: March 28th, 2012 | Author: Rian | Filed under: Soccer Shots Team, Updates | No Comments »
We have been extremely fortunate to have had Andy’s warm personality, passion for working with kids, and years of soccer experience as part of our team over the past couple of years.
And now we are very pleased to announce that Coach Andy Baena has agreed to join us as our full time Lead Coach, Assistant Director of Coaching, & New Business Development (Leagues/Partnerships/Bilingual Programs).
Originally from Manizales, Colombia, Andres “Andy” Baena has lived in California since the tender age of three. He remembers watching his father play soccer and it was then that his passion for the sport was born.
At the age of five, Andy started what would be his soccer career. By the time he reached high school, he was a part of several nationwide traveling teams. He then continued to play for two years at Los Angeles Mission College which led to being part of the first team in 2003 to be honored by the Western State Conference.
At this point in his life, Andy turned his attention to developing strong soccer players, spending time educating and physically training them.
In early 2012, Coach Andy took on the role of Assistant Director of Coaching as well as the responsibility to further develop partnerships with popular leagues, clubs, and bilingual programs in the local Los Angeles soccer world.
With several years of personal and professional experience in youth soccer development, Andy is looking forward to contributing and acquiring knowledge.
“I believe that positive youth development is extremely important to making the future a better place to live in.”
He also worked at a soccer store with almost 10 years of experience helping players from age two and up making sure they have all the right equipment to maximize their soccer skills.
Great friendships, discipline, and the meaning of hard work on and off the field are all lessons soccer has taught him. He enjoys helping children start their soccer experience in a fun, positive and healthy environment.
Andy now plays soccer for fun and is happy to be a part of the Soccer Shots team.
Posted: March 26th, 2012 | Author: Rian | Filed under: Soccer Shots Team | No Comments »
Soccer is a huge part of Lindsay’s life. She has been playing since she was six years old and started playing club soccer at the age of 10. Her club team was even seventh in the nation and second in the state at one point.
Lindsay also has a desire to help others. She graduated last spring from UCSD with a degree in Psychology and she currently runs grief groups for children in the San Fernando Valley at Our House Grief Support Center. She has a lot of volunteer experience, such as teaching Vacation Bible School, organizing UCSD’s Relay For Life and working in an Autism Lab at UCSD.
She enjoys being around kids and cannot wait to teach them about the sport she loves so much.
She enjoys being apart of a team and that love followed her into Varsity soccer at Louisville High School. As the captain, she was talking to division 1 college coaches about playing at their schools when in a preseason high school game she tore her ACL. Her desire to play didn’t fade, after rehab she joined the club soccer team at UC San Diego only to tear her ACL again. She went through another long process of physical therapy so she could continue to play the sport she loves. She now enjoys playing pick up with her friends and is currently on an indoor soccer team. She also just finished her first season as the assistant varsity soccer coach at Louisville High School.
Lindsay’s goal is to be a social worker and she is currently waiting to hear back from graduate schools. With her desire to help and love for kids and soccer, Lindsay is very excited to be a part of Soccer Shots!
Posted: March 19th, 2012 | Author: Rian | Filed under: Soccer Shots Team | No Comments »
We are excited to welcome Amanda Rosellini to the Soccer Shots Los Angeles team! Amanda will intern in the SSLA office as well as coach sessions in the westside and south bay. In addition to her love of kids and soccer, Amanda has an interest in journalism, social media, and event planning. She is highly motivated and we look forward to her addition to the team!
“Right when I saw the posting, I got very excited because this would be the ideal position for me. I have been playing soccer since I was 5 years old and I know what a positive impact sports can have on a persons life. Not only is soccer my passion, I absolutely love kids. I am the oldest of four siblings and have taught all of them how to play soccer.”
Amanda recently graduated from Simi Valley High School in 2011 and started at Santa Monica College as a communication major. She has been playing soccer since she was 5 years old and has continued to love it more and more through the years. She began playing for a competitive club team when she was 12 years old where they ended up coming in second in the National Cup.
She is the oldest of four children in her family and has always loved kids. Amanda is truly excited to join Soccer Shots. She feels the idea of teaching children the fundamentals of soccer is so exciting!
Currently, she is on the SMC team and hopes to transfer to a four year college and continue playing. In addition to soccer, Amanda enjoys running, hiking, surfing and basically anything that gets her outside.
Posted: February 16th, 2012 | Author: Rian | Filed under: Soccer Shots Team, Updates | No Comments »
We are very pleased and excited to welcome Jonathan Karacozoff to the Soccer Shots Los Angeles team.
Jonathan is a recent transplant to Southern California and currently lives in Marina del Rey. He grew up in Sacramento, and began playing soccer at the ripe old age of five. After high school he attended UC Berkeley where he majored in political science and minored in education. Growing up Jonathan played every sport, but soccer quickly became one of his favorite sports. While in high school he became actively involved in rugby, and translated his soccer skills over to the rugby pitch (rugby was a spin off from soccer). He still has a passion for both sports, and is excited to see them grow in the United States of America.
Growing up in a house with a physical education teacher as a mother led him to have a life long passion for teaching.
While at Berkeley he had the opportunity to work with the Sage Project, which is a non-profit charity that mentors young children in the bay area.
Having had such a positive experience through the Sage Project, Jonathan is proud to continue teaching the youth of America through Soccer Shots.
In addition to Soccer Shots you can find him working for the company KozFit, which is an enterprise he founded with his brother. In his spare time he can be found playing sevens rugby, soccer, working out, pursuing higher knowledge, and hanging out with family and friends.
Posted: February 6th, 2012 | Author: Rian | Filed under: Soccer Shots Team, Updates | No Comments »
We are very pleased and excited to welcome Lindsey Munce to the Soccer Shots Los Angeles team.
Lindsey grew up within a household surrounded by sports and fell in love with the game of soccer when she was 8 years old. Whether playing alongside her father, winning trophies with her team or simply trying to keep up with her older brother she knew at a young age that soccer would always be a part of her life.
While attending the University of Oregon, Lindsey participated and helped lead a summer program for kids on military bases around the world. This program ignited a passion for not only working with children but culture and travel as well. Since then, she has lived and/or studied in Italy, England and most recently Ireland of which she retains dual citizenship.
In the summer of 2009, she left her home and event management career behind for Belfast, Northern Ireland. There she volunteered for Habitat for Humanity for 3 months and joined them to film their 15th anniversary project in Romania in which 250 volunteers built 10 homes in just 5 days. From this life changing experience, she produced an award-winning documentary that appeared in film festivals around the world as well as a promotional film that has globally increased volunteerism in a number of Habitat for Humanity affiliates.
In Soccer Shots, Lindsey has found the perfect combination of a love of kids and passion for organizations that strive everyday to make a difference and is thrilled to be a part of the team!