Regina children’s soccer league
Tisdale - Thursday, May 30, 2013
by:Timothy W. Shire

Grand daughter Aurora was eight this week and on Wednesday evening, she was playing in her regular soccer league game. This is her third year playing soccer and from the pictures on this page, you can see she and her friends are thriving in this well organised and planned team sport experience. With parents and other grand parents we appreciated our warm coats, picnic chairs and a sports atmosphere that exceeds anything I have seen for children of this age.

The players in each team are selected from the schools and neighbourhoods shared by the children, so they are playing with people they know and have known for years. The age grouping is extremely narrow, so these players are all seven, or just turned eight. What we also appreciated was that the skill levels were well advanced and with both teams being surprisingly even, it was a great contest with the parents of both teams cheering and encouraging players on both teams.

Soccer really lends itself to this low level of cost and organisation. The city has lots of green spots suitable for games like this and in this case, the lines had been painted on the field and to Regina’s credit, there were no soccer nets. Soccer nets are outrageously dangerous, with children all across North America dying every year when goals topples over. A seven year old in our former town, Watson Lake Yukon, was killed last fall in just such an incident. A couple of weeks ago, the government of the Yukon passed a law regulating these goals. But in Regina, simple flags do the trick and with two onfield coach/officials, the game went smoothly and full of fun and excitement.

To make sure that the children get equal opportunities, the game is halted every four minutes and the players rotate from the bench to the field and assume different positions in the game.

Next year, four year old Ella will no longer have to sit on the sidelines, for she too will be in a team playing soccer each and every week from spring until mid June.