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Soccer Parenting Nov 29, 2016

High-profile guests set to present at first Soccer Parenting Summit

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Soccer parents throughout the United States will have the chance to learn from a lineup of prominent speakers this week during the first-ever Soccer Parenting Summit, an online event set for December 2-4.

Tony DiCicco

Tony DiCicco

The Soccer Parenting Summit will feature seminars from Erik Imler (former United States Men’s National Team player and the founder of ‘Can’t Pass, Can’t Play’) Sam Snow (Coaching Director, U.S. Youth Soccer), Tony DiCicco (former U.S. Women’s National Team Coach), Ian Barker (Director of Coaching Education, NSCAA), Lori Lindsey (former USWNT midfielder) and Kelley Pulisic (mother of current USMNT player Christian Pulisic).

Lori Lindsey

Lori Lindsey

+Soccer Parenting Summit Website

The event is the brainchild of the The Institute of Soccer Parenting and the site’s founder, Skye Eddy Bruce. Bruce is a former collegiate and professional soccer player and has coached in the youth collegiate levels. She also currently holds a USSF “B” Coaching License, a National Goalkeeper License, a national speaker for the Changing the Game Project, and is a Coach Educator for the NSCAA. It should also be noted that Bruce has contributed guest posts for Soccer Wire.

The Institute for Soccer Parenting lists their aim as “to enhance every child’s youth soccer experience by engaging, educating, supporting and advocating for parents.” The company also breaks down their goals into four values: active health, coach integrity, life lessons, soccer knowledge, love of the game, and balanced outlook. The site provides columns and insight into some of the top issues facing youth soccer today as well as The Level-Headed Soccer Parent Manifesto, a guide for parents to use as their children continue to play the game.

So, why develop a summit for parents? For Bruce, the hope is that it will be another avenue for them to expand their interest in the game.

“My hope is that parents receive some great education and support when it comes to learning how to support their child,” said Bruce. “I also hope that the parents start realizing and understanding the powers they have to change the game just by having higher expectations for coaches and the environment with which their children compete. But beyond that this is just an incredible weekend of collaboration with just some fantastic, truly phenomenal speakers who are bringing really engaging messages to parents.”

+Read: What’s the real problem? American soccer and a culture of mastery

Those wishing to participate in the online summit can obtain a free pass through the event website. Soccer Parenting will also be offering a Sideline Pass for $49 to the event, which will give them lifetime access to the various seminars.

“The delivery is definitely unique. This is the first time that someone has tried to do this in soccer,” said Bruce. “But because of the size of our country and because of how busy and crazy parents lives can be this gives them the flexibility to watch it live, at their convenience, over the course of the weekend. What are the chances of bringing thousands of parents together, to leave their families to travel to a convention? It just doesn’t happen. This is the best way to bring all of the information right to the parents directly.”

Support from organizations within the game has also been high.

“The NSCAA has been extremely supportive,” Bruce said. “Ian [Barker] was one of the first to get back to me and commit to being a speaker. This is everyone from the United States getting involved here.”

+Read: Survey says status quo in youth soccer isn’t satisfactory

Bruce also mentioned that there were talks with U.S. Soccer, but due to their recent organizational and staff changes they were focusing on developing their message on the subject.

Although the first Soccer Parenting Summit has yet to kick off, plans to make this a yearly event are already in motion.

“The response that I have had has been phenomenal, and the education and engagement has been essential,” Bruce said. “This will be an event that will be certainly be repeated. I am hoping to create a movement of parents that create the best environment for the next generation of soccer-playing children. This is certainly a move in that direction.”