Viking Football Handbook

Updated Wednesday September 18, 2019 by Heather Hanrahan.

Welcome to the Viking Youth Football Association Program. Here is some general information that you should know to help assist you and enjoy your Viking Youth Football experience.

Chain of Command: (when a problem may arise)

  • First: approach the Head Coach to try and get a resolution.
    • If unresolved- Approach the Saturday or Sunday Director.
    • If unresolved- Approach the Player Personnel Director.
    • If unresolved- Present to the Viking Board.


  • We are members of the The Chicagoland Youth Football League (TCYFL), which is the largest youth football league in Illinois. 
  • The TCYFL has a website where schedules, standing and league information are listed.
  • PLEASE do not contact the TCYFL directly. All league communications should go through the  Viking Vice-President of Football.

Team Moms: 

  • Please help your child's team have a GREAT season by volunteering! 
  • Each team will need 2 team moms to help with administrative aspects while also keeping the coach and parents informed about upcoming events. Flag teams will only have 1 team mom. Team moms are selected by the head coach.
  • There will be team mom handbooks for your reference and team mom meetings every Tuesday night throughout the entire football season (including post season). 
  • Meetings will be held at Osmond Park.

Game Schedules: 

  • All tackle game schedules are made by the TCYFL and posted to their website, but they are subject to change during the season.
  • Flag game schedules are completed at the start of the season and will be distributed to the coaches/team moms.
  • Schedules and maps to the fields can be found on the league website at


  • Tackle practices will be held at Osmond Park, days and times are up to the coaches' discretion per age level.  
  • Flag practices will be held at Osmond Park and will be two days per week.  
  • Cheerleading practices will be held outside until school starts and location is TBD. 
  • Parents are not to leave their children until a coach is present.   
  • Please bring your player a few minutes early so that practice may begin on time.  
  • Parents are asked to arrive 10 minutes prior to the end of practice for notes/communications.  
  • Players should bring a water bottle and required gear with them to each practice.


  • Assume practice is every night as scheduled.  
  • A light rain will not cancel practice. 
  • If the weather is severe at 5:30pm, please call your coach to find out about cancellations or check with team mom or website.  
  • The RULE on lightning is as follows: 
    • When a lightning condition is detected in the vicinity of an outdoor facility then all activity must cease and coaches should seek shelter for all participants. Activity should not resume until 30 minutes after the last observed lightning or thunder (recommended by the National Lightning Safety Institute).


  • During player evaluations, wear loose fitting shorts or sweats (no blue jeans/denim shorts or zipper/button -up pants)
  • Wear an old t-shirt/play shirt that has your child's name written in large letters on the back. (This helps the coaches remember who's who).  
  • After the first 4 conditioning days wear your helmet, practice jersey & pants over pads, cleats, cup, jock strap & mouth guard.
  • Bring a sweatshirt and skullcap for those cooler nights.  
  • Shoes should be laced up, good fitting gym shoes or football cleats.  
  • Absolutely no jewelry.  


  • A $300.00 deposit check must be collected before equipment can be taken home. Please make checks out to VYFA.  Post-dated checks will be held by the registrar and returned at the end of the season after all equipment has been returned.  
  • Uniforms must be kept clean, please do not machine dry.  
  • Families will be responsible for paying for any lost equipment. 
  • Players' names are not allowed to be written on practice jerseys.


  • Tackle teams will have a combination of home and away games. 
  • Flag home games are played at Osmond Park on Saturdays. 
  • Players are expected to come to all games. Parents must contact the coach if their player will not be able to attend. 
  • Transportation is the parent's responsibility. 
  • Tackle players are expected to be at the game 1-1/2 hours before scheduled game time to warm-up and weigh-in. If you miss weigh in, you cannot play that day. 
  • Players are expected to stay for the entire game and should be in full uniform. 
  • The games are played even in the rain, games are rarely canceled. 
  • Players, parents and spectators should conduct themselves with team spirit and show good sportsmanship.
  • Players, parents and spectators can be ejected from the game by the referee and suspended for future games.


  • Being on time is essential. 
  • Players are expected to be at the practice location and ready to practice by the designated start time. 
  • If you are going to be late, please communicate this to your coach prior to practice. 


  • No unexcused absences are accepted. 
  • An absence will only be excused for illness, family events or anything school related. 
  • The parent should contact the coach before practice for notification of an absence. 
  • Playing time will be diminished for players that miss practice.

Playground Policy: 

  • Siblings of our players are welcome to enjoy the playground provided they are accompanied by an adult!

End of Season Party: 

  • Coaches and team moms should plan their own end of season party for their team with the team money they collect from the parents at the start of the season.
  • VYFA will give all players an end of season medal/trophy and additional gifts are at the discretion of the coaches/team moms with the team money they collect from the parents at the start of the season.

Other Potential Costs for Tackle/Flag: 

  • Cleats, cups, socks, mouthguard, additional pads or equipment.
  • Team snacks - half time and post game
  • Player and team pictures are taken by professional photographers, dates TBA, optional to buy.
  • Required team money for additional teambuilding activities, breast cancer awareness items, team party, coaches gifts, player end of season gifts, etc. Amount is determined by your head coach and team moms and averages $40-$50 per player.

Playing Levels and Weights:

  • Fall Flag - ages 5-7 yrs
Tackle: see the current TCYFL Age and Weights Parameters.

Player age as of September 1. Players cannot be enrolled in High School.

What to Eat and Drink before a Game:

  • Have a pasta dinner and drink a gallon of water that day before. 
  • Eat a good breakfast of eggs, oatmeal, bagels, toast and fruit. 
  • Drink a bottle of water and a sport drink before that game. 
  • Do not over eat or eat heavy foods such as pancakes before a game.

Hot Weather:

  • Drink a gallon of water a day
  • Stay out of the sun when possible
  • Drink water and eat a light meal before a game or practice
  • Bring extra water to the game or practice
  • Do not bring frozen water bottles
  • Put water in a cooler with ice cubes but do not over fill with ice
  • Bring a sport drink for before and after the game or practice
  • Eat some fruit or a light meal after the game or practice

What Parents Should Expect: 

  • Your child will learn what they need when they get to practice. 
  • No prior knowledge of the game is expected. 
  • Let the coach do the coaching. 
  • Your child will have a great time and learn how to work as a team.

Board Meeting: 

  • Viking board meetings are held the second Tuesday of every month at Anastasia's.
  • All parents are welcome and encouraged to attend. Attending 5 board meetings in a calendar year will allow you to vote in the election for board positions.
  • Board members can be contacted via email, please see email addresses on Board Member website page.