The Lakehill Technical Academy is a free program that was successfully launched in 2016 and will continue on for the 2018-19 season. The Technical Academy is supplemental to the regular club programming and is run by Lakehill’s technical staff coaches. The players that take part in this program are invite-only, as identified by the club’s technical staff using the “ABCD-123” ‘assessment criteria’. Players in this program are deemed to be at their "appropriate level", which is an equivalent balance of both successes and challenges, and anybody interested in attending the academy can contact the Technical Director.
The academy is an opportunity for the Lakehill players that have shown dedication and proficiency to come together in a like-minded environment. Our aim is to promote a positive connection with the sport, and while having fun is emphasised and a sheer enjoyment of the game is necessary, we do stress the importance of a focused attitude from all of the attendees. We encourage sportsmanship, responsibility and attentiveness in all players, and participants who do not strive to display these traits may be temporarily uninvited from the academy until they are able to prove they are capable of doing so.
Technical ability(primarily dribbling and "touches on the ball") - and specifically it's development - is prioritised in the academy's curriculum. We also aim recreate a "street soccer" environment, encouraging a love for the ball and the game itself, with its’ freedom and creativity. Due to the side-to-side and unpredictable movements associated with dribbling, it is a great tool in the development of not only close ball control, but physical literacy(agility, balance and control) as well. Technical proficiency also increases creativity, spontaneity, composure and confidence; all of which are key components in a player's repertoire as they progress. While passing is an essential part of the game of soccer, dribbling and touches on the ball at the younger ages helps to lay the foundation of multiple skill-sets.
The academy is run by Lakehill’s technical staff coaches, and lead by the technical director. Any parent coach wishing to attend and observe the Technical Academy is welcome to do so, however, if a parent coaches wishes to partake in the Technical Academy then they must be willing to fully adhere to the technical staff’s principals and methods.
We greatly appreciate the support and encouragement that the Lakehill parents give to their children, however, all parents and spectators are requested to refrain from any coaching on the sidelines during practices or games. "Coaching" refers to any comments aimed at the players instructing them what to do, what they did, or what they could have done.
Additionally, as per club policy, parents are not allowed on the field during practices or games. During the practices and games there will be times where the coaches give extensive information to the players regarding both technical and tactical details, and there will also be times where the coaches say very little and allow the players to experiment and solve problems themselves in order to enhance their cognitive development. Constantly telling the players with the ball what to do, or "remote controlling" is strongly discouraged at our club.
This program will also help the club to identify and nurture serious, motivated, talented young players as they continue to develop. Players will be eligible to play for Lakehill select teams in exhibition games and tournaments whenever the opportunity arises – especially in the U8-U10 age groups. As with everything else in the academy, these games are purely for developmental purposes, and the score/result of the game is not prioritised by the coaches, as the performance of our players is more important in the long term.