Local youth leagues have come together to hold a Silent Support Weekend across the county on 2nd and 3rd December
Having been successfully trialled last season, the Silent Support Weekend will return to youth leagues across Hertfordshire in the first weekend of December, giving another opportunity for the players to let their football do the talking.
Silent Support helps create a more positive space for players, coaches and spectators, cutting down on unnecessary distractions from the sidelines.
The previous pilot events were a big success, giving young players the opportunity to explore, find their voice and take control of the game. The goal is to find ways to make the game better for them so they can improve as players and a team.
Overall, the benefits on player development are clear, helping players to talk more and better support their teammates. Less outside influence gave them more independence over decision making and the chance to practice key skills without instruction.
Playing in an environment with less confusing distractions also allows the players to identify areas for development and explore new tactics on the pitch, which all supports their own development of critical thinking and enhance their playing journey.
Show your support with applause
During this Silent Support Weekend, the leagues are asking all parents and supporters to show their backing from the sidelines through applause only, but allowing coaches to provide instructions and give support to players as needed.
Ahead of the weekend, Hertfordshire FA CEO Karl Lingham said:
“Feedback from previous Silent Support Weekends showed clear benefits for young players, who told us they enjoyed matches with less outside interference and a calmer atmosphere on the sidelines, allowing them to focus on playing the game.
We are grateful to Hertfordshire Girls Football Partnership League, Herts Youth League, Mid Herts League, Royston Crow Youth Football League, Watford Friendly League, and West Herts Youth League for working together to deliver this initiative, which highlights their commitment to creating a positive environment for young players to develop.”