Vienna Youth Inc. (VYI) Lacrosse is a non-profit, volunteer-based organization which offers boys and girls in the greater Vienna area (grades K through high school), an opportunity to learn the fundamentals of lacrosse in a safe, respectful and fun environment. With the input of parents, VYI endeavors to foster the following:
We encourage and are committed to provide this opportunity to as many young people as possible.
VYI LACROSSE CODE OF CONDUCT
Coaches, players, parents, officials and spectators are to conduct themselves in a manner that “Honors the Game” and demonstrates respect to other players, coaches, officials, parents and fans. In becoming a member of the lacrosse community, an individual assumes certain obligations and responsibilities to the game of lacrosse and its participants. The essential elements in this “Code of Conduct” are HONESTY and INTEGRITY. Those who conduct themselves in a manner that reflects these elements will bring credit to the sport of lacrosse, themselves, their team and their organization. It is only through such conduct that our sport can continue to earn and maintain a positive image and make its full contribution to amateur sports in the United States and around the world. The NVYLL supports the following behaviors for those who participate in the sport or are involved in any way with the NVYLL. The following essential elements of the “Code of Conduct” must be followed:
- Sportsmanship and teaching the concepts of fair play are essential to the game and must be taught at all levels and developed both at home and on the field during practices and games.
- The value of good sportsmanship, concepts of fair play, and the skills of the game should always be placed above winning.
- The safety and welfare of the players are of primary importance.
- Coaches must always be aware of the tremendous influence they have on their players. They are to strive to be positive role models in dealing with young people, as well as adults.
- Coaches should always demonstrate positive behaviors and reinforce them to players, parents, officials and spectators alike. Players should be specifically encouraged and positively reinforced by coaches to demonstrate respect for teammates, opponents, officials and spectators.
- Players should always demonstrate positive behavior and respect toward coaches, officials, opponents, teammates, parents and spectators.
- Coaches, players, parents and spectators are expected to demonstrate the utmost respect for officials and reinforce that respect to players/teammates. Coaches are also expected to educate their players as to the important role of lacrosse officials and reinforce the ideal of respect for the official to players/teammates/parents.
- Grievances or misunderstandings between coaches, officials or any other parties involved with the sport should be communicated through the proper channels and procedures, never on or about the field of play in view of spectators or participants.
- Officials are professionals and are therefore expected to conduct themselves as such and in a manner that demonstrates total impartiality, courtesy and fairness to all parties.
- Spectators involved with the game must never permit anyone to openly or maliciously criticize badger, harass or threaten an official, coach, player or opponent.
- Coaches must be able to demonstrate a solid knowledge of the rules of lacrosse, and should adhere to the rules in both the letter and the spirit of the game.
- Coaches should provide a basic knowledge of the rules to players, parents and spectators within his/her program. Attempts to manipulate rules in an effort to take unfair advantage of an opponent, or to teach deliberate unsportsmanlike conduct, is considered unacceptable conduct.
- Eligibility requirements, at all levels of the game, must be followed. Rules and requirements such as age, previous level of participation, team transfers, etc, have been established to encourage and maximize participation, fair play and to promote safety.
- No participant in NVYLL activities may engage in behaviors that are considered child sexual abuse, sexual misconduct, physical abuse, verbal abuse, psychological or emotional abuse, or physical misconduct.
- No participant in NVYLL activities may publicly question a youth player’s participation eligibility based on the player’s gender, whether before, during or after a game.
Many people talk about sportsmanship or what it means to be a good sport. What does it mean to you to be a good sport? Answers to this question vary widely. Sadly, many coaches, players, parents, and spectators equate being a good sport with being weak or soft.
VYI believes in “Honoring the Game.” Coaches, parents, and athletes need to realize that an "Honoring the Game" perspective needs to replace the common win-at-all-cost perspective. If a coach and his team have to dishonor the game to win it, what is this victory really worth, and what sort of message is this sending young athletes?
"Honoring the Game" goes to the “ROOTS” of positive play. Each letter in ROOTS stands for an important part of the game that we must respect. The “R” stands for Rules. The first “O” stands for Opponents. The second “O” stands for Officials. The “T” stands for teammates. The “S" stands for Self.
R is for Rules
Rules allow us to keep the game fair. If we win by ignoring or violating the rules, what is the value of our victory? VYI Lacrosse believes that honoring the letter and spirit of the rules is important.
O is for Opponent
Without an opponent, there would be no competition. Rather than demeaning a strong opponent, we need to honor strong opponents because they challenge us to do our best. Athletes can be both fierce and friendly during the same competition (in one moment giving everything to get a loose ball, and in the next moment helping an opponent up); coaches showing respect for opposing coaches and players sets the tone for the rest of the team.
O is for Officials
Respecting officials, even when we disagree with their calls, may be the toughest part of "Honoring the Game". We must remember that officials are not perfect.
T is for Teammates
It’s easy for young athletes to think solely about their own performance, but we want athletes to realize that being part of a team requires thinking and respecting one’s teammates. This respect needs to carry beyond the field into the classroom and social settings. Athletes need to be reminded that their conduct away from practices and games will reflect back on their teammates and VYI Lacrosse.
S is for Self
Athletes should be encouraged to live up to their own highest personal standard of "Honoring the Game", even when their opponents do not. Athletes’ respect for themselves and their own standards must come first.