ITTY BITTY SOCCER: 2 & 3 years old.

Posted by Lee Spooner on 1/1/2021

Itty Bitty Program website: 



Below is the current schedule for our Spring 2021 program:

  11/01: On-time Registration Opens

  03/01: On-time Registration Ends

  03/02: Late registration opens.

  03/05: Notification of Team Assignments through PlayerSpace!

  03/16-03/20: Itty Bitty Clinics Start this week.  (Uniforms are distributed at first session.)

  TBA: League Picture Day

  05/08: Last sessions of the Spring Season


Itty Bitty Introduction Program Q&A 
2 to 3 Year-Old's 

Directors Note:  Please understand most young children will need their parents assistance during the first few weeks.  Each child is so different, some may run right out without, some will cling to your leg for the first couple of weeks until they learn to trust us and discover it is fun.  I encourage you to stick in there as every child shows improvement if they attend the majority of the sessions.  We play games with this age group that teach the basic skills that big kids use in their drills.  We make it fun as that is what 2, 3 and newer 4 years old want.  Depending on your group we will introduce scrimmages in the later sessions.

Q: What time are practice and games?
A: Our Itty Bitty group meets one day per week and DO NOT play games on Saturdays.  We do have groups that meet on Saturdays, but they are the same as the weekday sessions, just less traffic.  You choose one day and attend that day on a weekly bases as the kids do better once they get to know each other.  We do accept changes mid-season.

SPRING 2021 SESSIONS..Please note final sessions are based on total registration.

Wilmington Area

-Nir Family YMCA – 2710 Market Street

        Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays: 4:30 PM or 5:30 PM 

        Saturdays:  9:00 AM, 10 AM (Sold Out) & 11 AM

-Mid-Town YMCA – 709 George Anderson Drive

        Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays: 4:30 PM or 5:30 PM 

-Hugh MacRae Athletic Center (League game site on Saturdays)  

        Saturdays:  9:00 AM (Sold Out), 10 AM (Sold Out) & 11 AM (Sold Out)

-Ogden Park / Eaton Elementary School Fields  

        Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays: 4:30 PM or 5:30 PM 

        Saturdays:  9:00 AM (Sold Out), 10 AM (Sold Out) & 11 AM (Sold Out)

Leland Area

-First Baptist Church Leland

           Thursdays:  4:30 PM or 5:30 PM (Sold Out)


Q:   How much does it cost.

A:   We price divisions based on our cost, so as our younger groups do not have referee's means the games cost less.  As kids get older we add referees to the field per league guidelines.  

Ages      League               Play               Prices
  2- 3     Itty-Bitty Soccer Program        $  60
  4- 5     U5 & U6            5 v 5             $  80

Q: What is our goal with 2 & 3 year old'?
A: We will show the kids how to play with a soccer ball, but our goal is for them to have fun.  By the end of the 8 sessions we would like the group to be able to conduct a scrimmage successfully. 

Q: My kid already plays with a ball. What's so different?
A: We're using a soccer ball, and so we want to play with specific goals in mind. You'll learn to recognize when your child is performing a soccer maneuver versus a directionless kick.

Q: What equipment does my child need?
A:  None at all!  For players ages 2 & 3 in Itty Bitty soccer shin guards and cleats are not needed!  A ball should be purchased for practice at home but The YMCA provides a ball for every player, we even ask you NOT to bring a ball to your clinic as this helps with the "that's my ball" for our coaches.  PERSONAL NOTE:  Cleats and Shin guards are not needed until a player enrolls in the Super-Micron the money, once you know your child likes it you can start the investment into gear.

Q: Sounds like work. How do you measure progress?
A: With the smiles that we see each week, it can hardly be called work!  If each player has a smile and is having fun with their coach, that's success. We also want each player to strive to perform passes and dribbling correctly, but we'll gladly accept big kicks and theatrical falling if the player really wants to show off those skills.

Q: But my kid just might stand there and not participate. What do we do then?
A: They are 2 and 3 year old's, and as long as we keep that in mind, they are doing exactly what they should be doing. Some players are daredevils, the first to volunteer, the first to fall down and get dirty. Others need to watch a little bit in order to feel comfortable. We'll certainly help you coax your player out of his or her shell, but it's really up to them. Your job is to get them to the fields and give it a try. Don't worry - nearly every child out there has a soccer player in them and will start participating within the first couple weeks.

Q: How can you expect to control a group of kids at one time?
A:  We play soccer related games that are fun.  We involve parents as the next age group up our league uses volunteer coaches, majority of them being parents of 3 & 4.  We offer free on-line training and hands on training with kids prior to the season.  A soccer staff member is assigned to a team during the program to assist.  The first few weeks will seam disorganized as coaches and players get to know each other.  By the end of the season you will see the difference your team has achieved.


Q: Will my child learn real soccer?
A: Of course they won't learn real soccer!  Very few children have the "big picture" skills necessary to play soccer.  We consider the kids to be playing "at" soccer until they turn 6. Here are some examples of activities participants will do during their season: 1) warming up activities and fun exercises without the ball, 2) some basics soccer activities such as kicking and stopping the ball, and 3) dribbling with the ball from goal to goal. Each player will have their own ball - trying to score on MOM or DAD. At this age passing and playing together is not what the young player wants to do. They also play ball games like green light/red light, sharks and minnows, and others. Many brief water breaks will give the participants plenty of opportunities to rest and socialize with their parents/guardians or fellow new friends.

Q:  What is your refund policy?
  Refunds are given.  There is a $25 non-refundable administration fee to help cover the cost that are accrued once a child registers for the program.  Refunds must be requested prior to March 15th, 2021 for the Spring 2021 sessions.


Itty Bitty Introduction Program  Must be 2 years old by March 1st 2021 for the Spring Session.
2 & 3 year (some turning 4 during the season) new to soccer.  This is an introduction program with 10 kids per group.  They meet one day a week, in their uniform and on a soccer fields just like the big kids.  The difference is they do not play against another team but have enough kids to scrimmage.  Young players must adapt to a sport.  Most common things we see and hear "they took my ball", "they kicked me", "they pushed me".  This can all be an intimidating experience.  We feel scrimmages are better than games.  Example:  You are four years old and it is the 3rd day you have ever played soccer.  Coach yells go and you have the ball, look up and 5 kids are running at you to take that ball away.  Our Itty Bitty program helps players adjust to interacting with others, sharing, working as a group, kicking the ball....but most of all having fun.  Scrimmaging with your teammates is a lot less abrasive.

U5 & U6 Division's   Must be 4 years old on March 1st 2021 for the Spring League.
4 & 5 year old's new or returning to soccer.  Some experience playing any sport as a group.  Ample playground time would also count as group experience.  U5 & U6 Division's meet one day a week for practice.  30 min to 45 min depending on your coach and then play a game on Saturday mornings.

Q:  What precautions are you taking with kids due to COVID-19?

A:  As most sports require frequent closeness between players it is understood that it would be difficult to maintain complete social distancing.  The CDC Considerations for Youth Sports address this and some contact should be expected.  We are following the recommendations for outdoor sports as we resume our program.

   1.)  YMCA staff will be doing temperature checks on coaches, players, and staff at the start of your practice session at all fields.  Anyone who is sick or has been in contact with someone who has COVID-19— including players, family members, coaches, staff, and spectators — should not come to our fields.  Be on the lookout for symptoms of COVID-19, which include fever, cough, or shortness of breath. Call your doctor if you think you or a family member is sick. 

   2.) YMCA Staff will be required to wear masks and we encourage masks to be worn.  Face coverings are not intended to protect the wearer, but rather to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19 from the person wearing the mask (who may not have any symptoms of disease). Face coverings may be challenging for players (especially younger players) to wear while playing sports. Face coverings should be worn by coaches, parents, and spectators as much as possible.

   3.) Reducing physical closeness or contact between players when possible.  We have reduced the number of players at each site by 70%.  Players will only interact with their individual team.  Encouraging coaches and players stay 6 feet apart, reducing time players are within 6 feet during game play.  Discouraging unnecessary physical contact, such as high-fives, handshakes, fist bumps, and hugs.  Suspension of throw in’s until further notices, ball will be put into play with indirect kicks.

   4.) Promoting healthy hygiene practices with coaches and players.  Hand sanitizer will be provided before and after practices or games.  Remind players to cover coughs and sneezes, to use the inside of their elbow, and reminding them to not spit.

   5.) Limiting the sharing of equipment by Players.  Equipment will be provided to each team and then sanitized by YMCA staff before being assigned to another team for use.

Presented by US Youth Soccer Association