BYLA U9 Development Plan
The U9 level is intended to introduce the game of lacrosse to 1st & 2nd grade boys, with a philosophy of teaching skills through positive reinforcement while introducing fun and engaging games and drills. Our goal is to provide a solid foundation of lacrosse skills that the players can continue to develop as they progress through the Boston Youth Lacrosse program.
Some of the primary goals for the U9 level include: Developing basic skills, introducing intermediate skills, introducing the concept of teamwork, and introducing basic lacrosse vocabulary.
The emphasis in the U9 program is on learning the proper techniques for the basic skills, and lots of opportunities to practice in fun ways. Skills to be taught in the development program include:
Throwing and Catching
Intermediate Skills (optional, depending on the progress of the team)
1-on-1 defense (marking your man)
At this level, the only tactics taught are teamwork (passing) and keeping track of your defensive assignment.
With the emphasis at this level being on basic skill development, we teach only a limited understanding of the game – not much more than using your teammates in order to score goals. When we scrimmage, we play a modified version of the game with fewer players, on a smaller field. In an ideal situation, we would not spend time on understanding the various positions (attack, midfield, defense, and goalie) or on the off-sides rules. However, in order to scrimmage other towns (something that most of the players enjoy immensely), we are often forced to spend time on this.
Practices will usually begin with a warm-up run followed by line drills. After line drills, we rotate the players between 2-3 skill stations. Practice concludes with a group activity.
The group activity at the end of practice will incorporate the skills learned in a competitive manner such as relay races while cradling, passing, and scooping. As the players progress, we will move to 3-on-3 and 6-on-6 scrimmages.
Our games are played in the following format:
- Small field (half to 60% of standard field)
- 7-v-7 (with goalie, standard goals)
- Coaches are on the field to act as instructors and referees