Registration is now going on for the upcoming YPAC youth football program for children here in Switzerland County and the surrounding areas.
As registration continues, members of the YPAC board have been asked several question regarding aspects of the program — from who is eligible to player safety to qualifications of adults doing the coaching. YPAC Board of Directors President Chris Oatman addressed these and other questions recently:
1) Who is eligible to play?
The Program is divided into three age groups: U8 (Grades K-2, ages 5-7), U10 (Grades 3-4, ages 8-9) and U12 (Grades 5-6 ages 10-11). The age cutoff is June 1st, 2018, meaning that a child must be one of the listed ages on or before June 1st, 2018 to play in that age group. For example: On June 1st you are 11 years old and you turn 12 on June 5th. You are eligible because you were 11 on or before the cutoff date.
2) Who is YPAC?
YPAC is a pay-to-play private organization, not a sports or booster club. Registration fees are equal to or cheaper than surrounding tackle football programs. YPAC makes zero profit from registration. YPAC does not offer payment plans or financial assistance upfront. It does, however, have a program for parents to earn up to $50 per player back by working during home games at the entrance gate or concession stand.
You can be home schooled or from another county and be eligible to participate!
3) What about equipment?
Unlike other sports programs, YPAC gives players all of their gear except cleats and a mouth piece. Once registered, each player will receive a complete game uniform which is theirs to keep (padded pants, jersey with player name, socks and bag), a helmet, shoulder pads and practice pants and jersey. Some programs offer a lower registration fee but then require the parent to provide most of the players gear. By the time you purchase the required gear and clothing you spent more than what our registration fee is. Let YPAC do the running around for you!
4) What about insurance?
The registration fee also covers player insurance while on the field during official practice or games.
5) When can my child get their equipment?
YPAC has a one stop gear issue day set up this year inside of the high school cafeteria. On Saturday, June 23rd, anytime between 1-7 p.m., registered players and those wishing to sign up as late registrations will be measured for a fitted game uniform, measured and issued shoulder pads, a helmet and issued practice gear. A vendor will be present for you to purchase cleats and a mouthpiece and any other gear you want for your player.
6) How can I get more information?
To start the season off right we have a parents meeting and meet your coaches night set for Friday June 29th, 6:30 p.m. in the high school cafeteria. Parents and players will be briefed on league rules, practice and game schedules, parents/player conduct and expectations, fundraisers and will have a chance to meet the YPAC staff and coaches.
7) How does my child get in shape for the season?
YPAC is offering free open conditioning nights starting Wednesday, May 9th, from 6-7 p.m. on the high school practice field by the blue barn. No need to be registered to attend. Open conditioning will be May 9th, 16th and 23rd; and on June 20th. Stop by and check us out if you are interested.
Also, the high school is conducting a free youth football camp June 6th and June 13th from 6-8 p.m. on the high school practice field.
8) Can parents get gear, too?
YPAC will have “Fan gear” available to order this year at the beginning of the season. Info will be given out during the parents meeting.
9) What else does my child need?
Players will need a current sports physical on file with YPAC this year before the first official practice on July 10th. Don’t delay, get one scheduled now! The form is on the YPAC website.
10) Is it safe for my child to play?
All of the coaches pass a national background check and are certified by USA Football in heads up tackling. YPAC also has staff trained in CPR, and coaches and officials are trained to monitor weather conditions such as heat and humidity with our the league’s own wet bulb tester. YPAC follows all IHSAA guidelines on heat conditions during practice and games.
Age groups are set to ensure safe play. Weight limits apply to certain positions at each age group which prevent larger players from running or carrying the ball. Coaches and Referees watch the games to ensure safe play. Players must attend 10 practices before the first game to ensure they are tackling correctly. YPAC has a strict protocol in place for players who are injured and suspected of having a concussion. YPAC’s helmets are the best around this area hands down! They are fitted to each player and fit snuggly. The helmets are only two years old and officials just sent them out for recertification. Helmets are re-certified for safety every two years, and those that do not pass are replaced or repaired.
The ultimate goal is the safety of every player on the field. First and foremost organizers want players to learn the correct way to play football. Second, they want them to have fun and enjoy the sport. YPAC’s collective, forward-thinking actions with support from other leaders across medicine and sports, has led to the game being taught and played safer than ever before with nationally endorsed standards.
11) When and how can I sign my child up?
Registration ends June 20th, so don’t delay in getting registered. YPAC does offer late registration, but it costs substantially more and players cannot be guaranteed that they will have a game uniform or 10 practices in before the first game. Late registrants also may be ineligible to carry or touch the football if they miss the weigh-in deadline — regardless of the player’s weight.
To register go to: www.YPACSPORTS.com This site also has everything you need to know. You can see game, practice and conditioning schedules, staff, rules, safety information links, finances, volunteer opportunities and donation information. You can also get quick answers to your questions at the FAQ page.