This page provides a short introduction to AYSO in Beverly Hills. Much more detailed information about our program is contained all over this website, but we thought parents would find it helpful if we summarized, in a few paragraphs, what AYSO is about in Beverly Hills and elsewhere.
For more detailed information click on the links below.
First and foremost, AYSO provides a recreational soccer program for children ages 4 through 18. AYSO (American Youth Soccer Organization) is a national non-profit organization with almost 600,000 registered players and 200,000 registered volunteers. It delivers programs through individual units called Regions. Beverly Hills is Region 76. The regions are grouped into Areas and Sections. Beverly Hills belongs to Area 1-P, the other regions of which are in central and western Los Angeles County. Area P in turn is part of Section 1, which covers Los Angeles County, the Inland Empire all the way to Nevada, as well as parts of Nevada.
In Beverly Hills, our program has over 2300 players and operates in a regular season that begins on the Saturday after Labor Day in September and ends in mid-December.
Although we play in Beverly Hills, we accept registrations no matter where you live.
Click here to view a short video produced by AYSO National to introduce AYSO to parents of new players.
AYSO is a tax-exempt organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Donations to AYSO, including to Region 76, are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation to AYSO to support our programs, including scholarships for players whose families need some financial help, visit our donations page. Our taxpayer identification number is 95-6205398. Note that registration fees and other payments for players are NOT tax-deductible.
AYSO was founded on six principles which affect every aspect our program. They are:
- Everyone Plays!
- Open Registration
- Balanced Teams
- Positive Coaching
- Good Sportsmanship
- Player Development
Positive coaching and goodsportsmanship speak for themselves, but the first three need some explanation:
"Everyone Plays" means that every player on every team must receive a guaranteed amount of playing time. The national minimum is half the game, but in our region we require a minimum of three quarters, with some exceptions.
"Open Registration" means that we accept every player who registers, provided we have space in the relevant age group. Although we evaluate players, the only reason we do this is to assure "Balanced Teams" by assigning players to teams that we strive to make as even as we can.
"Balanced Teams" are not so important when the children are 4, 5, 6 and 7, but once they reach the age of 8 years old, they are playing on larger teams and fields and balance becomes critical. The result is that, at this age, we generally do not grant or even consider requests for players to play together or to be assigned to a particular coach. Teams are put together every year â€“ they do not continue on from one year to the next.
"Player Development" means that we emphasize development of age-appropriate technical and tactical skills and pure love of the game rather than winning at all costs. We want our players to improve through practice and opportunity to learn from committed coaches whose primary goal is to help players to get better.
Our region belong to Area 1-P, which also serves regions in Culver City, Santa Monica, West LA, Pacific Palisades, Hollywood-Wilshire, Los Angeles Central, South Los Angeles, Los Feliz and Watts.
We make up our teams afresh each year and we try our best to balance them, especially once the play moves to larger fields in U10. Please read our page on this for more detailed information.
At the regional level, AYSO is an all-volunteer program. All of our coaches, team administrators, program administrators – everyone is a volunteer. Unlike Little League or basketball, we do not pay referees – they too are volunteers.
Participation in AYSO cannot be made conditional on your volunteering but. unless nearly everyone volunteers to do something, we would not be able to function.
We offer extensive training programs for all our volunteers, especially coaches and referees.
Our policy since 2004 will be to require teams to provide at least two volunteers to train and participate as referees. Your child's team may be ineligible for the elimination stage of our playoffs if your team does not provide referees to the program.
TEAMS, GAMES AND PRACTICES
Teams are divided into groupings by age called divisions. The youngest divisions span on year and the other divisions span two years; except the oldest division, U19, which spans three years.
Age is determined on July 31 before the season begins. A player must be at least 4 years old on that date and cannot have reached the age of 19. Only in very rare cases can we register players who are too young and we absolutely cannot register a player who is 19 or older.
A full listing of our divisions and age groups is available. We often allow players to move up to be with their classmates - this most often happens in Beverly Hills for players born in August through November, because the school cutoff date is December 1.
The program for high school age players is slightly different. Teams play two games a weekend but the season ends in mid-November so as not to conflict with high school soccer.
Every team also has one mandatory practice a week (except for the very youngest players, 4 and 5 years old. Practices can take place on a fixed day and time each week. These times are assigned to teams after the teams have been formed, so there is no point asking for assignment to a team that practices on a particular day.
Team and field sizes are as follows:
|Division||Team Size||Format||Field size|
|U6 and U8||12 to 14||Teams play 4 against 4||Two games concurrently on adjacent mini-fields|
|U9 and U10||11 or 12||Teams play 7 v 7||70 x 45 yards|
|U12 and U14||14 or 15||Teams play 11 v 11||Full size fields|
|U16 and U19||target 17 - 18; max 22||Teams play 11 v 11||Full size fields|
Note: AYSO National recommends 9 v 9 in U12. We have so far been unable to implement this because of extreme shortages of fields for games and practices (9 v 9 means a 25% increase in the number of games and practice fields slots). We intend to move to 9 v 9 if the field situation improves and we can recruit sufficient qualified coaches.
For our players 8 to 13 years old, there is also a tournament season which starts with a tournament on Thanksgiving weekend and then continues, in one form or another, through June. Players 14 and up may also play on tournament teams once the high school soccer season ends in late February. These tournaments, with the exception of our own Beverly Hills Sportsmanship Cup, all involve travel to other regions, because we have no access to fields between January and August to run our own local programs.
WHERE DO WE PLAY?
All of our games and practices take place at public parks or schools in Beverly Hills and nearby areas, including La Cienega Park, Roxbury Park and Beverly Hills High School, El Rodeo School, Hawthorne School and Horace Mann School.
Upper division games are played in Beverly Hills and also at various Area P locations.
REGISTRATION AND FEES
We start registering players for the Fall Season in the preceding December. Registration is done on-line and can be done at any time until June. After June 1, we start to fill up to the point where there is some chance you won't have room and the later you leave it, the more likely you will be out of luck. We don't give preference to returning players after June 1.
In 2012, we are charging $200 for players who register on or before June 1, 2012. After that, the fee rises to $250, but we maintain the $200 fee for new players under the age of 8 and for recent arrivals in Beverly Hills. We also hold a short annual early bird special - for the 2012 season the early bird dates were December 4 through 10, 2012 with $50 off.
Our fees include a uniform - jersey, shorts and socks - you must buy shinguards and shoes (sneakers OK but everyone wants to play in cleats). The fee also includes team and individual photos, buttons, trophies and a yearbook.
We have a full refund policy for players who withdraw before they play or who are not placed on teams. Partial refunds are available in some other cases. We do not give refunds after July 31 unless additional criteria are met.