Entries in Soccer (73)

September 30, 2015 - Shelter from the Storm

Back in March we reviewed the Sideline Shelter offered by Upstart Sports. Its a must-have for all high school, club and college soccer, lacrosse and field hockey programs. But since then there have been two dramatic and exciting changes to mention.

The Sideline Shelter now comes with a panel of wind screens that stretch the entirety of the back side. The windows also sport vinyl straps that can be tethered up and out of the way, down tight to cover, or can be allowed to flap unsecured so that they protect from rain but still allow wind in.

What is the benefit to these new windows? Well, aside from the aesthetics, (they look great), there are the advantages of safety and comfort. Without the windows, a strong gust of wind can potentially pick up and move the shelter if not properly staked or weighted down. This could mean it flips over and damages the frame. The windows substantially reduce the risk of this happening. From a comfort standpoint the windows mean there is airflow and ventilation so that heat isn't trapped inside the concave shape.

But we said there were two exciting developments. Aside from the new windows, the best thing we've found in a long time, is that Upstart Sports has a program where organizations can own one of these great shelters for little or no cost. They've built an online platform that allows parents and businesses to purchase "shout-outs" on the back of the unit. Or, if you prefer, they'll even simply sell large backside ads to a local sponsor or sponsors to cover the cost. Since the average shelter will last ten years, this is a tremendous advertising opportunity for a minor investment. Who wouldn't want to do that?

In some parts of the country the predictions for extreme weather mean the potential for players and coaches to be exposed to harsh elements these next several months. If you want to keep everyone warm and dry and give your teams a graet homefield advantage, now you can do it and let someone else write the check!

Source: Upstart Sports

August 13, 2015 - They've Got You Covered

What do these guys at CoverSports do? What don't they do is the better question. If it has to do with baseball, football, tennis, track, soccer, golf or virtually any other sport and it needs to be covered up, look no farther.

They do personalized outfield and stadium wall covers. You know the ones with the cool illustrations, logos and ads? That's them. They do rain tarps, sideline covers, special events,  and on and on.

They are especially proud of they GymGuard gymnasium protector. They stock them in virtually any weight and color to suit your budget and application. Since they are the actual manufacturer, they have an advantage over others who subcontract or simply re-sell.

Since new gym floors cost tens of thousands of dollars it makes sense to bring in a GymGuard to protect your investment. Constructed of ultra durable and vinyl reinforced fabric. They are water-resistent, slip resistent and fire-resistent. You can also add letters or logos. They can be quickly unrolled and laid out to protect that valuable floor.

So from NFL stadiums to MLB field tarps to your local high school gym floor, there's no one better to blanket you in top of the line quality.

Source: CoverSports

July 9, 2015 - Indoor Soccer

This is from the file, "Why didn't we know about these guys when our kids were little?" Diggin Active make a large area of cool, fun, interactive sports toys and games that youngsters would love. This one, the Soccer Challenge appears to be one of the best in their extensive line.

I have not actually played with it myself but have watched a video demonstration and I wish I'd had one of these when my daughter was just starting in soccer. It would have been tons of fun to challenge her to a match and try to beat her up to 100, all the while stoking that competitiveness in her and improving her fine motor foot skills.

The device is simple, but exciting like an arcade game. The object is to kick the ball that is provided towards the mat, which you've hung on a wall so that the bottom is flush with the carpet. If the ball hits one of the white numbers  you get an electronic crowd cheer and that point score is added to your total. Hit one of the red numbers and a buzzer sounds and those points are subtracted. The designers were smart enough to put the higher point totals on the spots of the mat that coincide with the toughest shots for a goalie to defend, encouraging kids to learn superior shot placement.

Would this be exciting for kids past the age of, say, eight or nine? Probably not. But kids these days start playing soccer as young as four and a parent could get many years of fun and real training, indoors no less which means 365 days a year. This is a great way to play a game with your child but at the same time, actually have them practicing valuable skills.

Source: Diggin Active

Posted on Thursday, July 9, 2015 at 11:13AM by Registered CommenterSports Product Review in , , | CommentsPost a Comment | EmailEmail

July 3, 2015 - Our Cup of Tea

Four the third time in four years these two familiar foes will face each other with a ton at stake. In the last World Cup, Japan upset the United States and took home soccer's most coveted prize. A year later it was the Americans prevailing in the 2012 Olympics. Now, they meet again on the soccer's biggest women's stage as the two battle it out for the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup.

The only thing that could have been better for the Unites States was to play a day earlier, on the Fourth of July, but since that is the date scheduled for the third place match (Germany vs. England), they'll clearly take the game on the fifth.

Women's soccer is exciting and riveting, and growing worldwide. Here in the states, it is the largest sport for girls by far. Hopefully the excitement of our women's World Cup Championshp, (we're optimistic!) will lead to an even greater popularity of the sport and opportunities for women to advance and even thrive in a professional environment at home. That's when the cup would runneth over.

Source: FIFA

Posted on Friday, July 3, 2015 at 09:33AM by Registered CommenterSports Product Review in , | CommentsPost a Comment | EmailEmail

June 30, 2015 - Step Into the Trap

Most of the products we review these days have accompanying marketing videos. Some are quite effective while others are...not so much. Zoid Fitness is a product that is easy to understand in concept so you'd think a video touting its benefits might not be necessary. But we're glad they made one. Because after we watched it, we were blown away.


My daughter will soon be playing college soccer. She frequently works on her agility through solo training. A year or so ago she asked for an agility ladder, which we bought for her.


So when the folks from Zoid contacted us and asked us to try their agility training system we were excited to see if this was something new and different. When it arrived and I asked my daughter to check it out, I have to admit she didn't see the point. She said she had an agility ladder and that was good enough. Then I asked her to come over to the computer so she could watch the video.


Like most teenage girls she isn't big on admitting she was wrong. It only took about a minute for her to say she “got it,” and understood now what the big deal was. The beauty and power of Zoid is its versatility. There's no other product out there we know of that can do so much.


Instead of one long and one-dimensional ladder, Zoid is a set of twelve extremely heavy-duty rubber trapezoids which can be arranged in a nearly infinite number of patters. We had assumed that these would be light weight and flimsy, maybe like workout cones, but the product is thick and very durable. This, of course, means that no matter how many times they're stepped on, tossed around and otherwise abused, they'll still be in perfect shape year-after-year.


They can be used in nearly any sport and on any surface. You can download a tutorial from their website on how to set up many, various patterns and do multiple training exercises. There really is no way you can become bored and there are so many skills you can develop. Coaches can use their creativity in designing challenging, custom regimens. Patterns like snakes, circles, hopscotch – some connected some segmented – each one developing different muscles and strengths. Every personal skills trainer should own a set.


But again, if you're still not sure...go take a look at the video. If it convinced my daughter, there's a good chance you'll be sold too. The beauty is you don't have to be a genius to use this product. But the folks who thought it up sure were.


Source: Zoid Fitness