Our goal is to field competitive teams while also developing the lacrosse skills of the individual players. It is our philosophy that practices are the time to improve skills and learn fundamentals. The fundamentals are used to develop proficient offensive and defensive tactics which will translate to success on the field of play.
It is important that players and parents accept the philosophy: "Players pay to train, not to play. Playing time is not a given; it is earned first by hard work, positive attitude, and display of skills on the practice field.
Our philosophy on playing time is stated below:
The coach has the right to determine the line-up that he determines is best suited for the particular situation. An "equal play philosophy" does not apply in many situations. It is each player's responsibility to perform at a level that is consistent in keeping with the goals of the team. If the player does not, for whatever reason, fulfill their obligations on the field, it is the coach's right to substitute them out so that the team may achieve its goals.
Coaches will do their best to give each player playing time. THIS DOES NOT TRANSLATE TO EQUAL PLAYING TIME. The coach will base playing time on what the line-up/substitution scenario best offers the team a chance to be successful. The coaches will make every effort to make sure that all players get some playing time. It will always be dictated by the game situation. The coaches understand that all players want to play and will do their best to get players on the field. However, there are no guarantees.
All players earn their playing time in practice. It is the player's task to work hard enough and learn enough to get on the field during games. Some players will get specialized assignments (LSM, FOGO) while others must work to be the best alternate starter that he can be. Regardless of the role that evolves over the season, all players and parents are expected to remain positive and committed to the goal of having the TEAM do as well as possible by the end of the season.
It is important for players and parents to understand that the goal of the team is to compete successfully in league play and at tournaments and go to the highest level possible. If it is the player's belief that he is not being treated fairly and playing an appropriate amount, he should discuss it with the coaching staff first and foremost. The coaching staff sees your son at each practice and may see something that parents do not. Parents and players should remember that playing time is earned. The players, by working hard in practice to improve skills and consistency, will determine how much playing time they will get.
In reaching our goal to educate players in life skills outside of lacrosse, we feel it is important for players to create and maintain good dialogue with their coaches. The parent's role is one of support to the players, coaches and LFLA. Parents should not engage in "coaching" from the sidelines, criticize players, coaches or game officials or try to influence the makeup or operation of the team at any time.
LFLA Procedure to Address Playing Time or Other Team Issues
If a player has an issue regarding playing time or other team issues, he should go to the coaches first. The player must wait 24 hours after a game to discuss the issue. The coaches will give the players an honest assessment of what they need to do improve and get more playing time.
If the player does not feel that the situation has been resolved after discussion with the coaches, parents can then contact the coaches.
If a parent feels that he or she must address a team situation, they are permitted to contact the coach 24 hours after a game to discuss their concerns. This 24 hour cooling off period is common in youth athletics.
At no time should a parent approach a coach during a game or practice. No parent should come onto the field for any reason during practice or competition.
This procedure is designed to help athletes and parents with questions, concerns or problems that may occur during the course of the season. It ensures open and honest communication between all parties involved. At any time during this procedure, one of the LFLA Board of Directors will be available to meet and discuss any concerns with all parties involved.
1. 24-hour rule: If the athlete or parent has a concern arising from a game, tournament or practice that needs to be addressed, they must wait at least 24-hours after the conclusion of the event to discuss the issue with the coach.
2. The athlete must first ask for a meeting between the coach and himself to discuss the issue at hand. In the case of players on U13 or younger teams, the parents may request the meeting.
3. If the issue is unresolved, the parents may ask for a meeting between themselves, the athlete, and the coach to discuss the issue. The meeting should take place at a location considered adequate for a private discussion - NOT at a tournament, game or practice.
4. If the issue is unresolved, the parent will ask for a meeting with the LFLA Board of Directors, coach and athlete. A scheduled time away from practice, game, or a tournament is appropriate. The decision of the Board of Directors at this point is FINAL.