BOWEN ISLAND FC ACADEMY OVERVIEW
The BIFC Academy is designed to provide extra training for those who desire it and focusses on skill development through possession-based sessions, focussing on ball mastery, 1v1 defending and attacking, evasive dribbling, shooting, shielding the ball, receiving the ball on the "back foot" as well as fitness, speed and agility work.
BIFC supports the value of like-minded players - many of whom may desire to pursue soccer at an advanced level (either on island or off) - to be able to train together and benefit from testing themselves. It is also equally important for other players to not feel intimidated or nervous about fitting in. Level specific training regardless of gender and/or age allows for this. Another undeniable fact of youth development is players develop at different speeds, times and frequency. In order to maximize their development players should be placed in an appropriate training level whenever feasible and for that environment to remain fluid. The Club’s mission statement is to provide all Bowen Islanders with the opportunity to love for the game to all Bowen Islanders.
Academy is offered in three categories (Pele, Messi and Zidane) at three different times during the year (Academy Spring, Academy Fall and Academy Winter). The number of categories are dependent on total registrations and so could be adjusted. The Academy program is focussed on our Youth Team players but occasionally we may offer a spot to an older Mini House player who is excelling. The Academy Zidane program also includes some recent alumni players who are pursuing the sport at a high level. All players are assigned into one of the three groups based on a combination of age, skill, attitude, coachability and maturity. As a guide Pele is for beginners, Messi is for intermediate players while Zidane is geared towards advanced players. The first few sessions will be used to assess players after which some players may be moved to a different group. The BIFC Academy program is run by the Club TD.
The criteria for selection is clearly defined and communicated to all members, parents and Club coaches. The Club TD (in regular consultation with coaches) is responsible for assigning the players to their respective group. Players will be continuously evaluated and their placement in the Academy will depend solely on where the Club feels they will benefit the most. Occasionally players may be moved up a level to see how they respond. This will be an ongoing process. These are some of the characteristics the Club TD and coaches will be assessing in their evaluations:
Coachability – Attentive at training, never a distraction, applies and adapts to coaching points quickly
Effort: Works hard in training and in games
Passion for soccer: Shows a love and understanding of the game
Accountability: Shows up on time ready to train, responds well to being coached/positive critiquing
Character: Supports his/her teammates, helpful at training, good body language, focussed
Ability: Shows a degree of talent, athleticism and technical skill
This program is for the Club's advanced players who will benefit from training with some older players who have already come through the Club system and are currently playing at a high level off-island. Several of the alumni players involved in Zidane are playing at the BCSPL and Metro and/or Div 1 level.