Developmental Program FAQs

Arlington Developmental Program (ADP)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

(updated 5/5/16)

The following questions are answered below:

  • What is the Developmental Program and what are its benefits?
  • What is the tryout process?
  • How do I determine the right age group for my child?
  • Can my child try out in a different age group?
  • How many players are selected for each team?
  • How are players evaluated and selected for ADP teams?
  • When and where do ADP teams practice?
  • Who do ADP teams play?
  • How many teams will the ADP have in my son’s or daughter’s age group?
  • How are the coaches selected for each team?
  • How much time commitment is required?
  • How much does ADP soccer cost?
  • Are refunds available after program fees are paid?
  • Can ADP players participate in Travel and/or Recreational Soccer as well?
  • Is financial aid / scholarship available, and how does one apply?


What is the Developmental Program and what are its benefits?
The Arlington Soccer Association (ASA) sponsors a soccer program known as the Arlington Developmental Program (ADP).  The ADP is for players with above average skills and a strong desire to further enhance their abilities and love for the game.  It will provide a higher level of playing and training than the ASA Recreational Program by grouping players of similar abilities in training and in matches while being observed and trained by professional ASA coaches.

This program will provide players with an opportunity to focus on technical and tactical development in a professional training environment with less commitment, money, travel, and time than Travel soccer.  Social, physical, and cognitive development, as well as style of play, will be the priorities each season, and match results will not.

The ADP Director is Mike Woods (bio) and the Assistant Director is Grant Smith (bio).

What is the tryout process? The ADP will run open tryouts in May/June for the U9, U10 and U11 ages to form teams for the following fall season.  All players are evaluated during these tryouts by the team coaches and additional evaluators.  Selected players are placed on appropriate teams by the coaching staff based in part on where the players live.

ADP teams are re-formed each season through this tryout process. Players interested in continuing with the program after the Fall season will need to register but not tryout again in the Spring.  New players interested in joining the ADP program after the Fall season will need to try out in March for the Spring season.

How do I determine the right age group for my child? To determine the appropriate age group for your child, find their birth year in the table below.

Soccer Age Groups for 2016-17:    U9, U10, U11

AGE GROUP

BORN

U9 Boys

2008

U9 Girls

2008

U10 Boys

2007

U10 Girls

2007

U11 Boys

2006

U11 Girls

2006

Can my child try out in a different age group? All players must try out in their appropriate birth year. Players cannot try out or play in an age group for which they are too young or too old.

How many players are selected for each team? At present, we anticipate the roster sizes for teams in the ADP as follows:  U9, U10 – 7 vs. 7 format – 10-11 players on each roster, U11 – 8 vs. 8 match format – 11-12 players on each roster.

How are players evaluated and selected for ADP teams? Players are evaluated using several criteria during tryouts held each year in May/June and then again (based on space available) prior to the spring season. The three most important areas of evaluation are technical ability, speed, and character.

1) Technical
–    Can a player handle the ball technically under pressure and in tight spaces?
2) Speed
–    Pure Speed – Is the player fast from point A to B?
–    Technical Speed – Can the player handle the ball under pressure?
–    Tactical Speed – Can the player make fast decisions with and without the ball?
3) Character
–    Does the player like to compete?
–    Is he/she a positive influence on the group?
–    Does the player possess a high work rate?
–    Does the player bring passion and energy to the game?

Players are evaluated in these and other areas.  If selected, players will be placed on teams based in part on where they live, where their school is located, and/or where their developmental needs are best met. Players that are not selected for the ADP will be provided with information on Recreational Soccer and other programs in ASA.

When and where do ADP teams practice? ASA is allocated fields throughout Arlington by the Arlington County Department of Parks and Recreation.  Each ADP team will have a different team practice schedule. ADP teams will practice twice a week during the season for 90 minutes per practice: one practice will be a pool session and one practice will be a team session.  Pool practices will be on a turf field. Team practices may be anywhere in the county and are usually on grass fields.  These teams will begin training in late August twice a week for 10 weeks with an 8 game schedule.

Who do ADP teams play? The ADP teams will have 8 scheduled matches during the fall and spring season.  Each team will play other ADP teams in their age group.  Results will not be kept, with an emphasis placed on player and team development.

How many teams will the ADP have in my son’s or daughter’s age group? For the 2016-17 season, we expect to have about 36 teams overall.

How are the coaches selected for each team? Teams are coached by professional coaches and qualified volunteer coaches (one of each per team). ASA employs a licensed, professional coaching staff under the supervision of the club’s Director of Player Development (DPD).  All professional pool coaches are hired and paid by ASA.  Volunteer coaches are usually parents and/or former/current players looking to get into coaching at an early age.  The professional pool coaches work for the club and are placed in pools to benefit the development of each player.  The coaching staff is evaluated each year by the ADP Director and may be rotated among the teams for maximum player development benefits.  The standard term for a coach to remain with a team is one year.  A complete list of the club’s professional coaching staff and their credentials will be available on the ASA website.

How much time commitment is required? ADP soccer teams play in two seasons per year. The fall season lasts 10 weeks from late August to early November.  The spring season lasts 10 weeks from late March to June.  Teams will play 8 games per season.  All games will be played on Saturdays or Sundays.  At the moment, teams will not play in end-of-season tournaments.

ADP players are expected to attend all team practices and games.  ADP players may also participate in Rec soccer, but ADP will be their priority.  ADP players may not participate in Travel soccer. ASA makes a commitment to our professional coaching staff and players. We expect ADP players and families to be fully committed each season as well.

How much does ADP soccer cost? Each player pays a fee to play in the ADP.  This player fee covers professional coaching salaries, referee fees, state registration fees, player uniforms, player insurance, the club’s administrative expenses, staff salaries, and many other expenses.  For the 2016-2017 year, the player fee is $315 per player, per season.   Each fall and spring season payment may be made in two installments with separate due dates and late fees.

ASA believes that financial status should not prevent players from participating in soccer.  ASA offers financial aid for families in need.  Presently ASA covers the costs of financial aid awards using the proceeds from camps and clinics offered by ASA.  Donations from parents registering their children for soccer may also be used.

Are refunds available after program fees are paid? No refunds will be given after the first match of each season. While rare, if the weather or some other unavoidable circumstance limits our program in any way, no refunds or other adjustments will be made. All refunds made before the first match are subject to a $15 processing fee to cover the cost of credit card processing fees.

Can ADP players participate in Travel and/or Recreational Soccer as well? Players participating in the Developmental Program may participate in the Recreational Program as well, but not in the Travel Soccer Program (and vice versa).  Conflicts will *not* be considered when scheduling ADP training and matches.  Therefore, ADP training and matches should take precedence. ADP players participating in our Rec program will be counted as “Select” players  – just like Travel players are – and thus face rostering constraints for Rec teams the same way Travel players do.

Is financial aid / scholarship available, and how does one apply? As in all ASA programs, financial aid is available to qualified applicants.  Contact the ASA office for information.

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