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Kicking Fit

A health and fitness blog for soccer with many resident and guest contributors. We'll share links from readers as well. Come kick with us.

Development Academy East Conference Recap: USSDA Winter Showcase

Over 50 U.S. Soccer Development Academy East Conference teams in the U-15/16 and U-17/18 age groups competed against teams from all over the country in the USSDA Winter Showcase from December 1-5 at the Premier Sports Campus in Lakewood Ranch, Florida.

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By | December 6, 2016 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Urban Soccer Symposium: What “Leveraging Sport for Social Change” really means

We talk a lot about developmental soccer. We have developmental programs and developmental leagues designed to help kids make progress on their skills, fitness, mental toughness and game play. We develop the sport, but what about developing the youth? It was something Dr. Wendy LeBolt had to take a second look at this weekend as she participated in the U.S. Soccer Foundation’s 10th annual Urban Soccer Symposium in Washington, D.C.

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By | March 15, 2016 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

Top original articles of 2015 on SoccerWire.com

It’s been a record year for readership in 2015 (and climbing) for SoccerWire.com! We’ve had some of the industries best and most respected writers contributing regularly all year, so it’s no surprise that the most popular pages on our entire website all year are dominated by these great original works!

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By | December 22, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

LeBolt: Taking the fear out of post-concussion syndrome

With concussions and other head injury issues dominating soccer headlines, Dr. Wendy LeBolt sought out someone with a lot of experience evaluating and working with kids and their brains: Dr. Elizabeth Delasobera, Director of Sports Medicine for Medstar Emergency Physicians, an assistant professor at Georgetown University Hospital who also sees patients in her clinic in McLean, Virginia. Their conversation offers useful and important information for parents.

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By | November 13, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

LeBolt: A fairy-tale finish for Louisville’s amazing Marylander, Caroline Kimble

Ashton, Maryland’s Caroline Kimble scored the biggest goal in program history as the Louisville Cardinals women’s soccer team upset the No. 1-ranked UNC Tarheels 2-1 in overtime earlier this month. It capped a stunning story of hard work and personal improvement that took her from a hospital bed to the pinnacle of NCAA soccer, as Dr. Wendy LeBolt explains.

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By | October 23, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Is heading the culprit in concussions? The mistake we are making

The soon-to-be-released movie “Concussion,” starring Will Smith as Dr. Bennet Omalu, the Nigerian physician who first identified Chronic Traumatic Encephalography, has brought wider attention to the smoldering issue of concussions in soccer and other youth sports. But Dr. Wendy LeBolt wonders if we’re missing the forest for the trees on this topic.

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By | October 6, 2015 | 2 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

Nutrition, body composition and health: Talking points with soccer teens

Coaches boldly tackle a litany of challenges head on. But there’s one thing most of them won’t touch: the “nutrition talk.” We have to name this issue in order to rid it of its stigma, bring it out of hiding and make it part of our regular conversation with all of our athletes, writes Dr. Wendy LeBolt.

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By | September 25, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , ,

Tragedy, tripping and Trump: What soccer can teach us about Europe’s migrant crisis

The Middle Eastern migrant crisis currently roiling Europe has even trickled over into the soccer world, and that’s a chance for us to use the game’s lessons to make this world a better place — even for blustering billionaire presidential candidates, says Dr. Wendy LeBolt.

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By | September 22, 2015 | 2 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , ,

No Pain, No Game? How to listen to your body when “new-season soreness” hits

Let’s face it, working out hard can hurt. Especially at the beginning of the season or the start of a new training program. While no pain, no gain, is never my mantra, discomfort generally comes with the package. The question is, says Dr. Wendy LeBolt, how do we know what pain to welcome and what pain to avoid?

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By | September 15, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

The Dynamic Warm-up: Five easy steps to reducing injuries

We know we’re supposed to run our kids through a dynamic warm-up before practices and games. But with so many programs out there, and so many variations, how do we know which one to choose? Dr. Wendy LeBolt offers a simple, useful rundown you can put to good use right away.

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By | September 11, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , ,

LeBolt: September is “Youth Soccer Month” – and bad press is killing us!

When did the youth soccer community get so ornery? That’s what Dr. Wendy LeBolt is asking herself a full week into “Youth Soccer Month,” as debate and recrimination swirls around the recent policy changes announced by the U.S. Soccer Federation.

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By | September 8, 2015 | 5 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , ,

LeBolt: Five things parents aren’t doing to protect their kids from concussions

We are aware of the concussion risks. We’re getting educated about the symptoms. We’re badgering our clubs to establish concussion policies, and we are letting the referee know just how we feel about that dangerous play out there. But there are five things parents aren’t doing to strengthen kids against concussions, writes Dr. Wendy Lebolt.

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By | September 4, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , ,

Howard women rout Hampton: Division I, not something to rush into

Hampton University’s brand-new varsity women’s soccer program has gotten off to a rough start in NCAA Division I, with two lopsided losses adding up to -33 goal differential with a cumulative shots disadvantage of 214-2. Dr. Wendy LeBolt takes a look at the tough road being traveled by this Virginia school’s brave team.

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By | August 25, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , ,

LeBolt: Five ways to ruin preseason soccer training

The school year is almost here, which means preseason soccer training and camps are revving up for fall league play. Unfortunately, many approaches to preseason prep hurt rather than help the team’s chances for healthy play and a winning season, writes Dr. Wendy LeBolt.

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By | August 18, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

LeBolt: A Costa Rican lesson on “Pura Vida,” and youth soccer’s real value

Are you ready for a true “travel soccer” experience? A trip to Costa Rica provided Dr. Wendy LeBolt — and a Virginia girls’ club team — with an unforgettable glimpse of soccer’s true joy, and the bridges it can build across humanity.

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By | August 11, 2015 | 1 Comment | Tags: , , , , , , ,

LeBolt: Be quick, but never hurry

“Be quick, but never hurry.” This week Dr. Wendy LeBolt breaks down the many useful layers of that John Wooden quote, especially for all sides of the youth soccer equation.

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By | August 4, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

Want to cut overuse injury in half? Teach your kids to use both feet

We can shout all day long about the wear and tear youth soccer inflicts on our kids, but there’s one thing we can do for them, says Dr. Wendy LeBolt: have them use both feet. Her explanation is a must-read for parents and coaches.

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By | July 28, 2015 | 1 Comment | Tags: , ,

Lauren Holiday’s decision to retire carries a great message for all our lives

USWNT star Lauren Holiday surprised most of us when she announced her retirement from professional soccer shortly after becoming a World Cup champion. Why in the world would a 27-year-old star walk away from the sport in her prime? Dr. Wendy LeBolt takes a look.

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By | July 21, 2015 | 2 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , ,

LeBolt: Is unequal pay really gender disparity?

The USWNT win the World Cup, but will share a measly $2 million, while FIFA paid $8 million in prize money to men’s teams who lost in the first round of the 2014 World Cup. Numbers don’t lie…or do they? Dr. Wendy LeBolt is not sure we should be so quick to play the discrimination card here.

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By | July 14, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , ,

LeBolt: Ten lessons from the women of the World Cup

Dr. Wendy LeBolt was schooled by the Girls of Summer 2015. Apparently, character development and life lesson aren’t just for kids anymore. Here are 10 nuggets she wants to remember from the dazzling performances at the 2015 World Cup.

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By | July 7, 2015 | 8 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

Morgan Brian passed concussion tests; should she have resumed play for USWNT?

The scary head-to-head collision between USWNT midfielder Morgan Brian and Germany’s Alexandra Popp in Tuesday’s Women’s World Cup semifinal had concussion alarm bells ringing, with Brian face down in the turf and Popp bleeding profusely from the scalp. But not every collision spells concussion, writes Dr. Wendy LeBolt.

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By | July 4, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Fasting and fitness: Ramadan during the World Cup

Can you imagine abstaining from all food, drink and even water all day during the biggest event of your sporting career? Dr. Wendy LeBolt breaks down the myriad elements Muslim athletes must manage when Ramadan falls during a major tournament.

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By | June 30, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , ,

In praise of Dawn Scott, the USWNT’s “24th Woman”

When U.S. Women’s National Team players say “anyone can hang with us for 60 minutes, but after that we have the advantage,” they have fitness coach Dawn Scott to thank. Dr. Wendy LeBolt takes a look at the work of a key member of the USWNT staff who is finally getting her due.

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By | June 23, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , ,

LeBolt: Should we celebrate soccer players’ beauty, or stay focused on their skills?

Soccer is the beautiful game, and not just figuratively. Dr. Wendy LeBolt takes a look at some of the recent statements extolling the attractiveness of Women’s World Cup participants and wonders if we’re demeaning these players, or giving them a greater chance to shine.

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By | June 19, 2015 | 2 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Pia Sundhage 2008

You do you, Pia, and we’ll do US

Talking trash. Such a fascinating part of sports, but usually it’s player to player, not coach to former players. Pia Sundhage is pulling no punches with this mental assault against players she used to coach. Hope Solo is a challenge to coach, “especially when it comes to trouble.”  Well, who doubts that? Abby Wambach should […]

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By | June 12, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , ,