Courses are set up to maximize the cross-aged mentoring experience. Just as older students can help mentor younger students with the 3 Rs (Reading, wRiting, aRithmetic), Instepper Courses will help mentors improve mentees’ FUNdamentals on the field.
Instepper recommends a course follow the guidelines below. However, the framework can be easily modified to meet the needs of everyone involved.
- 10 lessons spread out over 5 or 10 weeks.
- Each lesson is 30 minutes long.
- The mentor-to-mentee ratio is either 1:1 or 1:2.
- Homework is assigned after each lesson.
- A video is taken at the start and end of each course to document improvement.
- Mentors are typically in high school or college.
- Mentees are typically K-8.
- Listen and respect your mentor(s).
- Ask questions.
- Do your homework.
- Ultimately, you will be responsible for how good a player you become.
- Have FUN!
- Recognize/understand that you are experts and have all the knowledge/expertise to mentor the FIRST-TOUCH.
- Make sure the mentee and you are having fun.
- Challenge the mentee.
- Encourage and value mentee mistakes as well as your own.
- Mentor the way you would have liked to have been mentored.
- Be adaptable. Not all mentees learn the same way or at the same pace.
- Be creative. Be different. Be unique.
- Take the best aspects of your coaches, mix in your own personality, and make each session your own.
- Communicate effectively with your mentees and their parents.
- Communicate with fellow mentors to improve Mentors services.
- You should be compensated for your services.
- Mentee parents.
- Club credits.
- Community service hours.
- Fundraising donations.
Each mentee should start with this FIRST-TOUCH Introductory course (using the insides-of-the-feet).
- Lesson 1: Intros, assessment, “Before” video
- Lesson 2: Introduce Heart & SOUL
- Lesson 3: Baseball bat vs pool noodle
- Lesson 4: Second-Touch … passing
- Lesson 5: Goldilocks Zone … first-touch ends up with the ball coming to rest in an ideal location (the Goldilocks Zone)
- Lesson 6: Get into the rhythm. Introduce music for more rhythm and fluidity
- Lesson 7: Baseball Glove. Players have 2 “gloves” on their feet to better receiving/catch balls
- Lesson 8: Receiving harder passes
- Lesson 9: Receiving higher passes
- Lesson 10: Putting it all together; “After” video
Homework assigned after each lesson and reviewed at the start of the next lesson.
- Receiving high balls/passes.
- Receiving fast-paced balls/passes.
- Receiving with other parts of the feet and other body parts.
- Playing heads-up soccer (playing with your head up).
- Soccer speak (verbal and non-verbal communication).
- Increase soccer IQ.
- Goalkeeper FIRST-TOUCHES.
- Improve “Instepper Challenge” performances (times, scores, etc).
- Pee-Wees (2-5 year olds).
- Many, many more.