TOPSoccer, The Outreach Program for Soccer, is a community-based training program for players 4 years of age and older, who have a developmental and/or physical disability. Organized by youth soccer volunteers, this unique program enables these players to participate at levels consistent with their skills, not necessarily their age. TOPSoccer aims to provide players who have cognitive and physical disabilities the opportunity to play soccer.
TOPSoccer focuses on grouping players by skills and ability, not by age level. The TOPSoccer program promotes personal development and is designed to improve social skills and overall fitness. The American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine (AOSSM) encourages regular exercise for all persons, including those with physical and cognitive disabilities.
Exercise provides the following physical and psychological benefits:
• Improved strength, flexibility, mobility and coordination
• Help building and maintaining healthy bones, muscles, and joints
• Appreciation of an athletes' body and acceptance of it
• Enhanced self-image
• Improved quality of life and sense of well-being
• Greater participation in individual, social, and community activities
Soccer is the world's game. FIFA, the international governing body has 208 member associations, Special Olympics has over 300,000 soccer players worldwide, US Youth Soccer hosts over 3.2 million registered youth players and Washington Youth Soccer has 120,000 plus players in our state alone.
Our dedicated group of staff and volunteers are passionate about connecting youth with the chance to play the great game. Soccer is particularly beneficial for youth with cognitive and/or physical disabilities because it constantly involves the players, is easy to teach, fun to play, creates rapid initial improvement in skill and requires little specialized equipment.
Through resources, educational opportunities and community contacts, TOPSoccer strives to be the best developmental program for players, their families and their communities.