Weyburn Soccer makes safety one of their main priorities

With recent concerns for the safety in and around soccer pitches, the Weyburn Soccer Association would like to assure families that their priority is safety for their players, spectators and visitors to their parks.
Many of these concerns were raised when David Mills, a former Winnipeg resident and well-known radio personality ‘Buzz Collins’, had brought awareness to soccer field safety concerns on Facebook after his 15-year-old son was killed when a soccer goal crossbar landed on his head.
There are many safety measures that the Weyburn Soccer Association takes, to ensure that families can enjoy the soccer season. Jason Roy, executive member in charge of fields and equipment for Weyburn Soccer Association, said that players are not allowed to participate without mandatory equipment such as shin guards and proper footwear. In addition, all jewelry must be removed with the exception of medical alert bracelets.
Another safety factor is the proper training of coaches and managers. “All WSA coaches have to get a criminal record check done and take a Respect In Sport course prior to stepping on the field,” said Roy. “WSA has brought in guest coaches, such as the coach for the University of Regina, who coach our coaches to present age appropriate training to our players. If players seek a higher level of competition, we offer the chance to be on a Rep team that has certified coaches for that particular age group.”
In addition to the training offered to the coaches, the Weyburn Soccer Association’s Referee in Chief mentors young referees by hosting clinics and referee matches, which help keep the game safe for all of the players.
“Between our executive members and coaches, field inspections are done regularly to remove hazards such as garbage or gopher holes,” added Roy. In addition to field inspections, since Saskatchewan’s weather can change at a moment’s notice, the WSA will sound an air horn to evacuate the fields at the first sight of lightning or other adverse weather.
WSA’s nets are made from heavy aluminum construction, which makes it difficult to remove between games, and are always set up for the season. “Although it is forbidden to climb on the posts and nets, unfortunately there are unsupervised times,” said Roy. “WSA has always anchored the nets into the ground with a screw style anchor, tethered with a steel cable and secured in place with a padlock.”

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