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Soccer, Anyone? Lil' Kickers in the Twin Cities
This fall, the Twin Cities was invaded by a soccer revolution called Lil' Kickers. This program works with the child's stage of physical development more than simply teaching basic soccer techniques.
For a fair review, FFTC was given the opportunity to take a free session of the Skills Institute. So I registered my boys and off we went. This review is completely my own thoughts, and I don't have many bad things to say because my boys LOVED it so much.
Why we LOVE Lil' Kickers Skills Institute
- At the end of every Skills Institute class, there is always a scrimmage whether all the players are present or just one.
- Coaches take their job seriously and are always encouraging the players: nice kick, great block, good effort. They are energetic for the full 50 minutes
- Intentional water breaks
- Always guiding players to work together
- Fun Skill games including Battle Ship and something about a Wolf (All I know is that they had to howl every time they kicked the ball--or something like that--there was a lot of howling).
- Zack--the program director--is ah-maz-ing! From the moment we first met him, my boys and I enjoyed his enthusiasm and charisma. He takes good care of the kids and of the parents. He runs a tight ship but is a ton of fun!
What we didn't love about Lil' Kickers
It was hard to find the location. It's in NorthEast Minneapolis off Hennepin in an industrial area of town. I got confused on the unfamiliar streets, though I should have been paying closer attention to the signs they had at the corners near Twin Cities Indoor Sports.
History of Lil' Kickers and Structure of Program
Lil' Kickers began in Seattle, Washington and has welcomed over 237,000 soccer trainees into their program. Players can begin training as early as 18 months and keep practicing thru age 12.
The program is built on four beliefs.
- Childhood is a magical time full of possibilities.
- Approach everything from a developmental perspective.
- Learning should be fun.
- Create space for all children whether they are on the road to all-star soccer or simply just want to play.
Lil' Kickers offers Beginner Classes for ages 18 months- six. Classes for players that have had previous experience is offered to ages four to nine. And those who are the most advanced can learn in through their Skills Institute for ages five through 12. They also offer camps and a soccer league (though I'm not sure if that will be offered in this beginning year).
Where are classes held?
JCC Sabes Center • 4330 S. Cedar Lake Road, Minneapolis, MN 55416
Twin Cities Indoor Sports • 900 SE 6th Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55414
How much does it cost?
Classes range in price from $15-$17/class with approximately 11 classes per session. There is also a $30 registration fee.
How long are the classes?
Classes last for 50 minutes. With lots of different motor skill development for the 2-4 year olds and technique games for the older and more advanced students.