The U.S. Association of Blind Athletes (USABA) will present visually impaired and blind soccer clinics as part of the City of Los Angeles Recreation and Parks Department’s PlayLA Adaptive Youth Sports Program this fall. From Sept. 16 through Nov. 4, PlayLA’s free clinics will be held at two locations for blind and visually impaired youth ages 5 to 17.
Clinics will be held Saturday mornings on the Westside from Sept. 16 through Oct. 7 at Mar Vista Recreation Center, and in Pacoima from Oct. 14 though Nov. 4 at Hubert H. Humphrey Recreation Center. Participants of all skill levels will be taught blind soccer fundamentals, drills, game play and communication by coaches and members of the USA Blind Soccer Men’s National Team.
A member organization of the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC) and U.S. Soccer, The U.S. Association of Blind Athletes was officially named by the USOPC in January 2022 as the national governing body for the Paralympic team sports of goalball and blind soccer. The U.S. will make its Paralympic debut in blind soccer at the Los Angeles 2028 Paralympic games will help lead the blind soccer clinics in L.A.
“The amazing feedback we received from last year’s clinics was incredibly fulfilling,” said Paralympic gold medalist and USABA Blind Soccer Sport Ambassador David Brown. “It doesn’t matter if you are sighted or visually impaired, blind soccer is a sport in which anyone can participate and instantly know what to do… you just have to get used to the blacked-out eyeshades. For these clinics to be in the L.A. areas raises awareness of the sport being part of the LA28 Paralympic Games and that there is a sport for the blind in which individuals can participate and feel part of a team. What participants can learn from this sport is teamwork, communication, confidence and the feeling of acceptance.” Brown will help lead the blind soccer clinics in L.A.
PlayLA Youth and Adaptive Youth Sports Program provides access to inclusive, quality sports programing for youth of all abilities throughout the year. Other clinics offered include para surfing, wheelchair basketball, para equestrian and sitting volleyball. For more information visit adaptivesportsla.org.