Tuesday, September 23, 2014

5 Things to Bring to a Soccer Game

When children participate in a sport, there are a lot of things their parents must know, as well. My son has played soccer for 13 years. I have learned there are some things I should always bring with me, when I go to his games. 
Soccer is played in all kinds of weather.
I recommend you take these 5 things to your child's soccer games:
1). Appropriate attire 

The soccer weather I have experienced has been stifling hot; bitter cold; extremely gusty; pouring rain, sleet or snow; and even, on some occasions, absolutely perfect. It has been so muddy my shoes have squelched with every step. Prior to a MT State high school championship game in recent history, a snowplow was required to clear heavy snowfall from the pitch before the game. It is always best to prepare for anything and everything!
Wear or bring the following (as appropriate to the season):
   Sunscreen and sunglasses
   A cap with visor (or woolen hat)
   Gloves or mittens
   Multiple layers, including a waterproof, windproof jacket
   Comfortable footwear
   Thermal underwear or wind pants
   A blanket to wrap up in
   An umbrella (but be careful that it doesn't obstruct anyone else's view)

Forget fashion! Sometimes you just have to bundle up!
2). A folding chair 
Soccer games are long - sometimes lasting over two hours, depending on age group and ability level. Personally I'm unable to sit during an exciting game, but many people prefer not to stand for that length of time.
3). A team roster of player names and jersey numbers 
If you don't know all the kids on the team, or if many are of similar build and haircut/color, a list of their names and jersey numbers is a helpful reference. Sometimes as you are squinting into sun or driving rain, the only way to recognize even your own child is by his/her number. A game is a lot more exciting to watch if you know who is doing what!
4). A camera with a zoom lens - or a friend who has one! 

A photo documentary of this important part of your child's life is nice to have. Pictures taken from the sidelines are much better if a zoom lens is used. You may end up with some incredible action shots, well-worthy of being framed.
5). Good Sportsmanship and a positive, supportive attitude 

A parent's role is to be supportive and positive. Clap and cheer, and afterwards (victory or defeat), tell your child that you are proud of them. Leave the coaching to the coaches; the refereeing to the referees, and keep any negative thoughts to yourself. Enough said!

Players need to remember to bring other items such as uniforms and snacks, of course; but following these five suggestions can make spectating a soccer game much more pleasant. 

Snow had to be plowed off the soccer pitch before games could be played, the weekend this photo was taken.

Can you think of anything I forgot?
A version of this post was previously published by Yahoo Contributor Network, and was mentioned on this blog on April 12, 2014.  Since it is no longer available on Yahoo Voices, I have provided the information again here.

This post may be linked to one of the great link-up parties I follow and list on my blog. Check them out!


  1. Love the pictures! Can't believe they had to plow the field to play a game. You gotta love outdoor sports here in the North! Great suggestions. Being prepared makes spectating so much better.

    1. This afternoon's game started hot and sunny, then we had rain - then thunder and lightening, so the game was delayed an hour just before the first half, then need jackets for warmth - then back to short sleeve weather. All in one game!

  2. i love how you call it soccer, its football. but these are great tips.

    1. You are right - it IS football ... hopefully we Americans will figure that out some time soon!

  3. Water.Always bring water. But my favorite is a good attitude -- that both parents and players need! So appropriate. I cannot tell you how often I have forgotten my camera! Regrets... :)

    1. Yes - I am always disappointed when I forget my camera as well. And water is crucial for fans and players! Thanks for the comment!

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