Vipers is open to all children and youth and their families who wish to play water polo. The basic requirement is a desire to learn and enjoy the game of water polo. Our Club focuses on:
- Fostering teamwork, fair competition, respect and sportsmanship exhibited by all players in a fun and safe environment;
- Supporting each player to reach their full potential by promoting fitness and teaching individual skills, rules and team strategy;
- Respecting teammates, opponents, coaches and officials;
- Valuing the gender and ethnic diversity of the team;
- Developing self-discipline and work ethic;
- Learning that through teamwork they can achieve better results;
- Fulfilling commitments by participating in practices, games, tournaments, club events and fundraisers;
- Being responsible and taking on leadership roles when invited by the coach or Head Coach.
Player goals differ according to the individual; an overarching goal is for the players to have fun while acquiring and improving both their water polo skills and life skills.
To assist players in achieving their goals, the coaches provide regular structured feedback. Players who regularly attend practices and tournaments will have more opportunities to receive feedback; with the right attitude and work ethic, these players should improve at a faster rate than those whose attendance is poor. As important as giving feedback is, however, it is how each player responds and reacts to the feedback that will determine the speed of that player’s advancement. In water polo there is a clear progression of skills that are taught and which coaches will focus on developing. Players who are attentive to, and act on, feedback received will progress faster than those that do not. The coaching staff recognize that each player has unique qualities and will work to challenge each of them in ways that will help them achieve their goals.
Examples of challenges include providing players the opportunity to play in an older age category, being assigned to check a more skilled player, or recommending a player to participate in the Vipers junior coaching course or taking a referee course.
The coaches have high expectations of their players and believe that players most will rise to meet or exceed these expectations when given the appropriate opportunities.
Player Expectations and Responsibilities
We understand that our players are very busy and most are involved in a number of activities outside of their commitment to water polo. While we encourage multi-sport/multi-activity, we also encourage players to attend as many water polo practices as possible in addition to the one swim practice per week. Of course, our preference would be that each and every player attend every practice, league games, scrimmages, and tournaments, however, we understand that players and families must balance other commitments.
In the team environment, we expect all players to treat their teammates, coaches, parents, opponents and officials with respect. Each season, there is a good mix of new and experienced players; we expect all players to work with each other in a positive and encouraging manner.
We also expect a good attitude whenever players are representing the Vipers including before, during and after team practices, tournaments and other functions players attend as a member of the Vancouver Vipers. It is expected that players will be attentive to their coaches and act appropriately at all times. Those who fail to meet these expectations will be advised and provided an opportunity to change their behaviour. If there is no change, appropriate action will be taken.
We value and reward good teamwork and sportsmanship. We expect our players to always give their best effort and to respond positively to tasks that they are assigned to before, during and after both games and practices.
Players should note that those athletes who show up to practice and games, arrive on time ready to participate, have with a positive attitude, exhibit good sportsmanship towards both their own teammates and other players will be offered the most playing time during games, scrimmages and tournaments.
Parent Expectations and Responsibilities
Parents are expected to participate in both team and club activities. We believe this adds to team cohesion and builds bonds between players and families. Parents that support the coaches, opposing team members, the team, the officials and their own children are positive role models. The children become better players and citizens modeling on these behaviours.
Moreover, the Vipers cannot function without the incredible efforts of our parents; the ongoing support of all of our parents is required. We thank you in advance for your help.
The club expects that parents will do the following:
- Provide emotional and moral support for their children.
- Ensure players arrive to the pool on time for practices and competitions.
- Work with the coaches to stress the importance of personal best and personal improvement.
- Leave the coaching to the coaches, who have experience and qualifications necessary to create a positive, competitive and fun experience for all players.
- Read the email communications.
- Communicate with the coaches on a regular basis and voice concerns at an appropriate time.
- Help out with events or competitions that the club hosts such as co-ordinating, planning and helping out with social activities.
- Assist at weekly games and tournaments (score keeping, running the shot clock, etc.)
- Assist in fundraising activities, such as the annual Purdy’s Christmas fundraiser.