WILMINGTON, NC – The Wilmington Hammerheads Youth FC were excited to introduce a new piece of classic Programming at this Monday’s practices – The Developmental Player Program.
The Developmental Player Program is a practice-only program designed to give WHYFC classic players opportunities to train at higher levels, allowing for improved synergy throughout the club, and giving the individual player opportunities at higher levels within the club.
“The top-line goal of the Developmental program is to give opportunities for players to test themselves and improve within our club,” said WHYFC Executive Director, Carson Porter. “Whether it is on a soccer field or in a math class, the only way to improve is to challenge. We want to get players out of their comfort zones, which will naturally lead to the goals of development and improvement.”
One practice day each week, the selected players will move from their respective team to the ‘next-level’ team in the age group, or in some cases, in the age group above them. The practice program continues for 4-weeks. At the end of the 4-week cycle, coaches will discuss and evaluate the performance of the player and then a new cycle will begin. The 4-week cycle is long enough for the players to adjust to the new environment and long enough to allow for the coaching staff to develop a strong opinion of the player, but short enough to allow for competition for these spots, knowing that new players will emerge and will be given an opportunity in the next cycle.
“Coaches, players and even parents, have a natural tendency to ‘build a fence’ around our respective teams without putting much thought into the other teams or other players in the age group or in the club,” added Porter. “The ‘DP’ program gets all of our coaches working together to evaluate and discuss the overall health of an entire age group, and gets players working with different coaches in challenging environments. All of this moves us towards a synergy throughout the classic program that is centered around challenging, fun and healthy competitive environment.”
The ‘DP’ program was started to help improve individual players, but will also improve our coaching.
“A lot of trust has to occur to have a program like this. Our coaches are giving up a practice day with a player(s) who is doing very well for their team. Our coaches have to trust that when they send a player to a new team and a new coach, that coach is going to put on a great training session that helps the player improve. I want there to be some accountability in this program for our coaches. I want players to go back to their teams and say ‘that practice was awesome!’