​GUIDANCE : Tryouts & Competitive Clubs

SFYS Recommendations: Factors to consider for Competitive Players

  • Matt

    I'm copying a post on the community feed from another parent in the hope it gets more responses here. Curious to hear what parents of girls on Upper House teams think about this...



    I am a parent (and assistant coach) for my daughter's 3rd grade team. We are contemplating moving to a more competitive flight next fall, and are looking into SFYS's upper house vs Norcal's competitive league. A few friends have told me Norcal provides a progression of tiers for player improvement (teams can move from bronze to silver to gold, etc) and guest play in higher tiers, but at the same time it's much more expensive and then there's the travel what sounds like every weekend! I'd appreciate hearing from parents on current upper house club teams what they think about this trade-off, and why you've stayed or why you expect to leave.

     Out of curiosity, I looked at how an older group of teams (2010 girls) fared when making that same move (upper house to Norcal bronze tier) following the fall 2021 season. One year later, in the fall of 2022, these teams were still in bronze and all finished in the bottom half of their bracket. And in the spring of 2023, they're still in bronze except for one team that dropped to copper. I realize that's just one cohort of teams, but I have to wonder if they had just stayed in upper house, would their experience have been better (lower cost, less travel, better results on the field)?

     Comments from parents on other upper house teams would be appreciated!

  • Ross

    Hi, I am new to this process of trying to sign my daughter up for Upper House Try-outs...  I see a LOT of information and FAQs... like doing research. But the information is very fragmented on this site.   Is there actually a condsolidated "Registration" form for try outs???  When I see the word registration with a link, I kind of expect to see some sort of form at that link. 


    any help and clarification is appreciated.

  • R2

    Good column, appreciate this input. I would add that parents need to understand what appropriate "development" is at each age, what that means tactically during practice, how coaches acheive this on a weekly basis. Are the basics covered? Is your child able to: trap the ball with both feet both inside and outside of the foot? Can the coaches demonstrate at least 4 different ways to pass & shoot the ball? Can your child chest down the ball? How many players can 2 touch when receiving/passing the ball? When should your child expect mastery of 1 touch passing? When you watch the team play, is eveyrone just ballwatching, or is there running off the ball to support the attack? Are the rondos just part of the warmup or are they a component of training? Be aware that by asking these questions, your coaches may get very defensive because they typically don't teach much of this at all, even after years of training your child. Hold coaches accountable and they will improve. If you just let them do whatever they wanna do, there will probably be little development. Only by asking these questions and holding the CLUB accountable (since coaches move around all the time), do you have a chance of your player improving steadily over time. Good luck, parents!