The Outreach Program (TOP) for Soccer enables men, women, boys and girls 4 years of age and over with physical and/or cognitive disabilities to play soccer.
What is TOPSoccer all about?
Our goal is to provide an opportunity for anyone with a disability, or who does not fit on a typical team, to play soccer. Some people will not join typical teams because they are physically, cognitively or behaviorally unable to keep up or “fit” on a typical team.
How is TOPSoccer similar to typical soccer and soccer teams?
Our players are coached and taught soccer skills, activities and the game to the level of the player’s ability to participate and to understand the game concept.
They have fun and enjoy the same social and exercise opportunities through the game and joy of being on a team.
Players are registered just as their piers on typical teams. TOPSoccer is rewarding to everyone who participates.
How is TOPSoccer unique?
Players are grouped together more by similar ability than age. The programs may not form teams or play games but rather, focus on training and skills only. When games are played, the FIFA laws are modified, to make it work for each player and to ensure success for everyone.
Non-players may be on the field during training, scrimmages and games. This includes coaches and buddies.
Administrative procedures may be revised for registration; teams not defined by age and gender, teams may not be formed at all with players registered as individuals into programs. There is no upper age limit for participation.
Why is TOPSoccer important?
Players develop social and communication skills and improve coordination and muscle tone. TOPSoccer has assisted players with making advances in physical therapy due to exercise and activity.
Who can play?
Our program will be uniquely tailored to meet the needs of children who have cognitive or physical disabilities. We expect to have many children with Down syndrome, Autism, and a variety of other syndromes. We also will have children who use walkers, canes and even wheelchairs. We will have children who are visually impaired or hearing. And we will have children with no physical delays. This is why placement by ability and age works so well in this program. We will try our best to accommodate all children with a desire to play. If there is a doubt as to whether your child can (and should) play with us, please ask! We also ask that our players wait until the year they turn 4 years old, and may continue to play through high school and beyond.
When will the program run?
We will have our TOPSoccer games at the same time and location as our Fall and Spring Recreation games. All games will be at Patton Middle School on Sunday afternoons.
How can I help?
SCCSA members run the TOPSoccer sessions and experienced soccer players act as "buddies" for the disabled TOPS children, providing one-on-one support.
Soccer players between the ages of 11-19 who are interested in being buddies, can contact us at [email protected]. We would welcome anyone with experience or interest to help us with our program.
How can I read more about TOPSoccer?
There is a wealth of information on the US Youth Soccer TOPSoccer web page www.usyouthsoccer.org/programs/topsoccer.asp.
For SCCSA TOPSoccer signup form, click here