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We own our own equipment. This serves our families in many ways. They do not have to invest in equipment that their child will likely outgrow in a year or two - just use ours and when they grow, we'll issue the next appropriate size. We can inspect the equipment in the offseason and either repair or replace it.
However, the most important thing we do with regards to equipment is to send our helmets in regularly for factory reconditioning and recertification. This is required for the high school level and above, but is not mandated to youth organizations. We choose to do this to make certain our helmets offer the maximum protection to our players and to give our parents peace of mind that we are doing everything we can to keep our equipment in top shape for their players.
We require our coaches to be USA Football Heads-Up certified, CPR certified, and to attend a coaches training in the off-season. We offer the training in-house, or they can attend a youth coaching clinic. Some of the clinics our coaches have attended include Winning Youth Football and Glazier Clinics focused on the youth game. Additionally, athletic trainers attend all our league games.
We have a system for introducing players to contact and ensuring proper form. They do not advance to the next level until we are comfortable they have mastered their current level. Fundamentals are key and we focus on them.
Our organization utilizes an injury protocol during games. If a player is injured and we can't rule out something other than a scrape, bruise, or other minor injury, we ask one of the trainers to check them out. Once we invoke the injury protocol, the player cannot return to the game without the consent of the trainer, a parent, and the head coach. This removes the concern from the equation about a coach sending an injured player back in to try to get a win or the parent who may not understand that their child may actually be injured. All 3 adults must be in agreement that the player is fit to return to the game before he or she can continue.
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