Illinois Youth Soccer Coaching Education

Whether you are a beginning parent coach or an elite level travel team coach, Illinois Youth Soccer provides the latest US Soccer certification and licensing coaching courses in English and Spanish. US Soccer licensed instructors provide the latest coaching information, techniques and tools to help you handle the challenges of coaching in a fun, learning environment. Clinics are taught by top US Soccer-licensed instructors and participants can earn a US Soccer U8, U10, U12 Youth Module certificate, an ‘E’ license, and state or national ‘D’ coaching license.


Illinois Youth Soccer Coaching Education Staff
Position Name Email
Director Of Coaching Rick Flores
Associate Director of Coaching Caulbert Smith 
Coaching Education Administrator Ivan Rico

Thousands of coaches have attended Illinois Youth Soccer licensing courses. The objective of the coaching licensing curriculum is to provide all soccer coaches, from the beginning to the advanced, with up-to-date theoretical and practical knowledge, so that coaches in Illinois can help ensure that players develop towards their fullest potential.

Designed to meet the needs of today’s modern youth soccer coach, Illinois has established a comprehensive Coaching Education Program that offers a U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF) approved curriculum of courses for the "Youth Module", USSF "E" License Course, and USSF "D" License Course.

More information on US Soccer and Curriculums (Click here)


Illinois Youth Soccer provides:

  • A program in which coaches can earn state and national coaching credentials
  • A system which improves a coach’s knowledge of the game, methodology, and teaching methods
  • Valuable information and current coaching trends state-wide, nationally and internationally

All Courses are taught by Illinois Youth Soccer State Staff Coaches who are USSF certified and currently hold a "C", "B", or "A" coaching license. All Youth Module instructors have the National Youth License. All courses must be scheduled through the Illinois Youth Soccer office. We will update list of courses as they are scheduled on the website.

Each Coaching Course participants who completes a course, receives a complimentary coupon from Sports Authority and Chipotle, official sponsors of Illinois Youth Soccer Association.

Philosophy of the Coaching Education Program

To help you gain the most information from the courses, staff coaches teach the essentials of soccer in an optimal and dynamic way. All candidates are asked to participate in field sessions if able. Approximately two-thirds of each course is comprised of field sessions and practice coaching and the remaining one-third as lectures and collaboration. The intensity of the field sessions are directly related to the level of the course. The higher the course level, the more hours required for the field.

A minimum of 16 participants must be pre-registered for any course at least five days prior to the start of the class; otherwise the course will be canceled.

FREE Coaching Clinic available to Members

IYSA affiliated member organizations can request a FREE Coaches Clinic. This is offered to both Recreational and Competitive programs affiliated with Illinois Youth Soccer. These clinics will be structured as an educational resource provided by the Director of Coaching or an experienced Staff Coach. The Coaches Clinics can be modified to a specific soccer topic area of training of your choice as well as parent education. Don’t miss out on one of the many benefits our state association offers.

Free Coaching Clinic Host Request Form 

Want to host a USSF D or E ?

If your club or program is interested in hosting a coaching course for the convenience of your coaching staff fill out the below host form.  The minimum number of coaches who would need to be registered for the course to be a go within a week of start would be sixteen (16).  

Coaching Education Request Host Form

Recreational Clinics Available to memeber leagues 

  • Philosophy of coaching 8-years-old and younger players
  • Characteristics of 8-year-old and younger
  • Prevention and care of soccer injuries
  • Age appropriate activities for 8-years-old and younger players
  • Organizing a youth training session
  • Methods of Coaching  
  • Team Administration and Risk Management
  • Coaching Technique
  • Coaching Tactics
  • Laws of the Game
  • Principles of attack and defense
  • Small sided games

USSF 'F' License - 2 Hour Online Course

This course is a 2-hour course that can be completed online. It can be accessed through the U.S. Soccer website. This course is intended for all parents and coaches of youth players. The focus of this grassroots course is to share U.S. Soccer's best preactices in creatin a fun, activity-centere and age appropriate environment for 5-8 year old players. If you plan to complete your E License, you must compete the F License first. (Click for more info on F course)

USSF ‘E’ License – 18 Hour Course
Introduction course for coaches who are coaching players who play 7 v 7 and 8 v 8 and 9 v 9

In this 18 hour course, which is offered in English and Spanish, instruction is focused on refining the players technical skills under game like conditions that incorporate pressure of an opponent and limited time or space. We refer to this as teaching technique using guided discovery and the coaches toolkit. In addition, basic tactics will be taught within technical sessions. Individual and group tactics are presented in 1v1, 2v1, 2v2 and small-sided games activities. Basic principles of play such as width, depth, penetration and support are emphasized in this course. Coaches will be required to coach in small sided and expanded game and be given feedback personally as well as via email on the completion of the course.  This course will prepare you for the USSF D Course.  You will be required to do pre-course assignments and turn them in at the start of the course. Once registered, you will receive an email a week prior to the start of the course with links to these assignments. (Click for more info on E course)

USSF ‘D’ License – 36 Hour Course
Coaching Players 13+ who play 11 v 11

This 36 hour course, which is offered in English and Spanish, is designed for the coach who has already received an ‘E’ License. The "D" License prepares coaches by expanding their knowledge and understanding of the Technical and Tactical demands of the game and the developmental process necessary for players. This course is now done in 4 phases.  The first phases is preparation phase and provided preassigned training sessions and risk managment to be completed by second phase.  The second phase is instructional phase and candidates meet face to face with instructors and observe demos, practiice coaching, and given feedback.  The third phase is deliberate practice phase which candidates are required to complete 5 practice pre assigned training sessions over a miinmim of 10 weeks and apply with their own coaching and attend a minimum of 5 webinars The fourth phase is the performance review phase and final interviews with instructors as well as the final field exam.  Coaches are exposed to 2 practical coaching evaluations and a final field test. There are written and oral examinations that each coach must successfully complete and receive a passing grade for the course. A D National Pass or D Certifiate grade is determined by the coaching candiates final examination results. (Click for more info on D course)

USSF ’D’ License (Re-test) Upgrade

The cost is ($150.00). You have the option to attend the entire course again.   This is offered to coaches who received a "Not Ready" score and are looking to upgrade to the National ’D’ License and to be able to attend the  USSF ’C’ Course.  If you are interested in upgrading your license you will need to attend the second weekend of a current D Course. Webinars will also be required. You will do a practice and receive individual feedback to be better prepared for final practical testing next day.  If you have any questions contact Rico at

National License Courses

If you currently hold a National ’D’ License and have for a minimum of 1 year and would like to attend the 9 day duration national coaching school for the National ’C’ License, please contact the Coaching Department at U.S. Soccer, 1801-1811 S. Prairie Avenue, Chicago, IL 60616, or call at 312-808-1300 for a brochure. Attendance at national coaching schools is limited and courses do fill up quickly. You can also visit the website at for information and schedule of courses.

Course Content

All courses include both lecture and participation orientated field sessions. You will be exposed to modern methods of coaching soccer where principles and methods of coaching are taught to help you prepare for practice sessions and games. Sessions on tactics will include specific principles and exercises for the development of tactical skills through individual, small group and team tactics. The field coaching sessions will assist you in developing your players’ technical skills and tactical understanding in progressive, easy to understand exercises and games that motivate your players. Each state level coaching course has been designed to provide the aspiring youth coach with the necessary knowledge to improve his players team.

Continuing Education

Knowledgeable coaches are essential to the development of players. Coaches must keep apprised of the latest techniques, philosophies and tactics. To maintain credibility, to learn the latest information and to keep up with the players, improve your knowledge by taking advanced and refresher courses.

Replacement Certificates/Licenses

To obtain a copy of a misplaced or lost certificate, please follow the link below. There is a $25 replacement fee.