Pop Warner coaches learn new basics for football safety
CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. – Safety is always a number one concern when it comes to contact sports, especially in football.
On Saturday, many local coaches got a hands-on experience in how to improve the safety of future football stars.
The game is constantly changing, from the NFL to Pop Warner, safety is preached to both players and coaches on all levels.
At Christian Brothers Academy on Saturday, coaches from all over New York State, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut, gathered to take part in USA Football’s Heads-Up Program.
"The initiative here is to be proactive in teaching the basic fundamentals of proper tackling technique and understanding the progression at the youth level to teach proper fundamentals and proper habits,” said Drew Giungo with Capital District Pop Warner.
For some coaches this is a whole new process, Ed Dergurahian says learning the new basics can be a bit challenging for not only the coaches but the players as well.
"It's different than what we've been teaching them and that's what makes it so hard. The technique we have had in place for the past years evidently is not what their looking for. They are trying to take the head out of the tackle in football and it's new for the coach and it's new for the kids,” said Dergurahian.
New fundamentals also means new drills. For the coaches, this gave them a chance to become experts in proper tackling drills and realize they aren't as young as they remember.
"Interesting, not quite as young as I was back then and not quite as agile either. To go through it, I understand to have the hands on demonstration, you have to do that in order to be able to teach it," said Hakim Jones with Bethlehem Pop Warner.
Summer practices will start shortly, and these coaches can now help further future Pop Warner stars down the road with these new skills.