Congratulations on your commitment to coach youth football. If you have played but haven’t coached before, you’ll need some help to make your first season a success. If you have coached previously, every season is an opportunity to do better.
Coaching Youth Football, with its field-tested information and advice, will help you run your team with confidence. You’ll find methods and tips for communicating with players, minimizing risk and preventing injuries, providing basic first aid, planning and conducting practices, teaching the fundamental techniques and tactics, coaching on game day, and keeping it all fun.
Written by Joe Galat, a former college and NFL coach and the president and founder of American Youth Football (AYF), this book covers fundamentals of offense, defense, and special teams. It features separate chapters on offensive and defensive techniques and tactics, as well as the best practices for blocking and tackling to minimize the risk of injury. More than 70 drills and 126 photos and illustrations are included in the chapters.
Designed for coaches of players ages 14 and under, this book is also a valuable component of the Coaching Youth Football: The AYF Way online course, the official course of AYF, offered through Human Kinetics Coach Education. With this book, you can create an athlete-centered environment that promotes player development, enjoyment, motivation, and safety so that players will come out for the team year after year.
A resource for youth football players (ages 14 and younger), parents of youth football players, and youth football coaches. Also a resource for coaches of American Youth Football–affiliated teams who are required to complete the Coaching Youth Football: The AYF Way online course for certification.
Welcome to Coaching
Introduction: Coaching the AYF Way
Key to Diagrams
Chapter 1: Stepping Into Coaching
Chapter 2: Communicating as a Coach
Chapter 3: Understanding Rules and Equipment
Chapter 4: Providing for Players’ Safety
Chapter 5: Making Practices Fun and Practical
Chapter 6: Teaching and Shaping Skills
Chapter 7: Coaching Offensive Techniques
Chapter 8: Coaching Offensive Tactics
Chapter 9: Coaching Defensive Techniques
Chapter 10: Coaching Defensive Tactics
Chapter 11: Coaching Special Teams Techniques and Tactics
Chapter 12: Coaching on Game Day
Chapter 13: Developing Season and Practice Plans
About the Authors
“This is the most comprehensive book on coaching youth football I’ve ever read. Given the tremendous responsibility that youth coaches have, I believe this book should be required reading for anyone planning to coach young kids today. From this book, youth coaches will learn and understand the fundamentals to teach the game the right way.”
Jerry Horowitz—NFL Football Development Director
“Coaching Youth Football breaks down football fundamentals into simple, teachable techniques that are easy to grasp and execute. It will be a great benefit to those serious about learning how to coach the great sport of football.”
Howie Long—Football Analyst, 2000 Pro Football Hall of Fame Inductee, Eight-Time Pro Bowl Selection
“It is essential for youth football coaches to be well versed in proper technique and strategies in order to teach the game and its valuable lessons. There is nobody more knowledgeable and qualified to bring that information to youth coaches than Joe Galat, and he does that in this outstanding book. Joe is a football treasure; he has seen and done it all at every level of coaching.”
Matt Birk—Six-Time NFL Pro Bowl Selection; Two-Time NFL All Pro; Captain of the Baltimore Ravens, Super Bowl XLVII Champions