Frequently Asked Questions - Games & Practices

Typically on Saturdays.  However, older divisions (children 14 and older), All-star teams and Spring Select teams may play on Sundays.

Usually 5 days before the season starts.  But some divisions adjust the schedule AFTER the season starts to create as balanced matches as possible.  The schedules will also be posted on our website.  Don't panic - simply check the website regularly.

Generally, 30-45 minutes prior to kickoff.

Each morning, the first two teams playing on the field that day are required to set up the goals.  This activity should be directed by the coach or assistant coach who has been trained in assembling the goals.  This should be completed at least 45 minutes PRIOR to the start time of the match.  Likewise, as indicated on the schedule, the last teams of the day have the responsibility of safely taking down the goals and nets, and placing ALL of the pieces, stakes, hammers and nets in the appropriate bags.  Under no circumstances are players or children allowed to help putting up or taking down the goals and nets.

Earrings may never be worn, even if taped or padded in practice or games.  No jewelry, friendship bracelets, watches, necklaces, plastic or metal hair barrettes or "hair wraps" may be worn during practices or games as well.  Only soft knee braces may be worn upon inspection and approval of the referee prior to the match.  No casts, soft or hard, are permitted.  MedicAlert bracelets may be covered by tape to keep them snug against the wrist and completely hidden.

All referees must complete the background check and Safe Haven course, as well as a classroom-style Regional Referee Program/Certification Course.  New and returning referees should check the "Referee Corner" on our website frequently - especially before the season commences.



NOTE: It is expected that each team - regardless of age group - have 2 – 3 parents volunteer to become a Program Certified Referee.

For U7 & above, weeknight practices begin in mid-August.  Your team manager or coach will provide you with details.  U5 and U6 teams practice on Saturday’s before their games.

Soccer is a team sport; a team's morale and success is dependent upon the commitment of each player to attend all practices and games.  Please consider the impact on your child and teammates if he/she will be involved in other activities, which will compromise his/her availability. 



If you cannot work around the practice schedule assigned for your team, you may choose to have your child put on the waiting list until there is an opening at his/her evaluation level on a team that practices on a different night.  However, there is no guarantee that all players from the waiting list will be placed.  Contact your Division Commissioner with questions.

No, it is prohibited by our field permit with the City of Santa Monica (even at parks that would otherwise allow them).  Players, parents or spectators will be asked to leave the grounds if they have a pet. 

NO!  AYSO National Rules and Santa Monica Malibu Unified School District Rules dictate that NO persons may consume alcoholic beverages or use tobacco products while engaged in AYSO activities or on SMMUSD property.  This includes at practices in the parks as well as at the schools.  Coaches are asked to request parents that do smoke to do so off of school property and completely out of the presence of any child.  Again, this also includes the parks.  Individual who violate these rules will be asked to leave the premises, escorted if necessary.  The same policy holds true if an individual is showing signs of being under the influence of alcohol/drugs.

Per AYSO guidelines, the following is required to occur if a player is injured and bleeding is present during practice or a game: 

1.  The player must be removed from the activity immediately and the nature of the bleeding stopped.  

2.  The wound must be covered/bandaged.  

3.  Any article of a players clothing containing blood must be removed or neutralized with a solution of hydrogen peroxide.

First, notify the Division Commissioner of any accident or injury.  Email addresses are listed on this website.

Second, whenever there is a personal injury, damaged property, or threats of or actual physical violence surrounding an AYSO game, practice, event or property, the AYSO Incident Report Form should be completed. The form should be prepared by the Coach, Referee or other AYSO Key Volunteer. The form can be found under Info/FAQs tab, Fields & Safety, Safety.  Or on the AYSO National website at ayso.org.