Every year I look forward to the NCSAA Convention. Since I started coaching a decade ago, I have always tried me best to make the NSCAA’s largest gathering of soccer coaches in world. I remember my first convention in Raleigh, North Carolina with my high school coach. We took a little road trip down from New York City. The experience truly changed my life and set my coaching career moving in the right direction. Prior to the convention I had enjoyed coaching younger kids, whether it was at soccer camp or just kicking about with younger players, but never considered myself as a “coach.” At that time, I was about 18 years old, and focusing on my own development and playing career was my main priority so “coaching” seemed like a different profession. What I didn’t realize prior to attending the convention was how relevant the coaching industry was to my own development as a player. As a freshmen in college, focusing on playing, studying and having fun seemed like the only things I needed to concentrate on, but after seeing the other side of the sport from such a perspective I never looked at the game the same way.
At the time, my mindset as a player with professional aspirations was to be a stick student of the game and to only narrow-in on aspects of the game that would help me excel. After seeing the entire business industry of coaching development in one place at the same time, I started to see many channels I could connect myself to the beautiful game. It was an invigorating inspiring and motivating time for me to see, experience and feel another side of the sport that we as young players take fore granted or simple over look on a daily basis.
My first NSCAA convention allowed me to be a critical thinker in the world of soccer development and it truly inspired me to contribute and create something better for the soccer community. It changed the way I trained, and it changed the way I studied the game. It changed the way I looked at products and it changed my perception of what is and can be offered to a growing soccer market. I can get into the educational value, networking opportunity and the vast amount of resource on a jam packed weekend, but I’ll leave that up to the Association to explain all that the convention has to offer.
For now check out the NCAA’s website for more information on the 2013 Convention in Indianapolis.
Special thanks to my Friends Seminary High School Coach Warren Salandy for taking me to my first NSCAA Convention. More on Warren along with other significant mentors that have positively influenced life as a player, coach and person.