Thirty years ago if you were to say that your kid had a “professional” soccer coach people would look at you like you were crazy. Now, almost every major club has professional soccer coaching for kids.
Professional soccer coaches in the USA exist in 2 categories:
The first (and the best) is the coach who is a true professional. This is the coach that has played at a high level and now coaches. This coach is professionally licensed coach with their state organization and US Soccer (nationally) or NSCAA. They will also most likely have some higher level of coaching whether that be collegiate, professional, or with youth national teams. This coach gives the kids great knowledge and skills, and an environment similar to training with the best clubs in the world.
The second category of a “professional” coach is one who makes a profession of coaching. As soccer has grown in the US, so have the fees that youth soccer players pay. Youth soccer is big business. Coaches in bigger cities often have opportunities for equally big paychecks for coaching a team. Multiply that by 2 or 3 teams and you can make a good living. And why not? Doing what you love and working when the kids are available after school and on weekends. And honestly, when you love it – it feels like you’re not even really doing any work.
Professional soccer coaching for kids in the USA has really taken form. Clubs run multi-million dollar enterprises and the expectations are high. Results are expected. Additionally, many of the bigger youth clubs have reached out to professional European clubs to partner and bolster there name here in the states.
The good new about all this is that the quality of the information is improving. This is a huge transformation from when the current generation of parents were playing soccer as kids. Getting a good coach was rare. Everyone played Rec soccer, but having a paid coach was not the norm. The average team had coach dad running practices and calling time-out from the sideline (there are no time-outs in soccer! oy vey!). Plus, add to that the access to information and training courses online and with smart phones – these kids have such a bigger opportunity that ever before. It’s all there in front of them. All they have to do is open that door of opportunity and walk through it.