Viking Football Handbook

Updated Wednesday February 15, 2017 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.  
  • 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 on the east side of bleachers.

Game Schedules: 

  • All game schedules are made by the TCYFL. 
  • BIG10 (Sunday teams) game schedules will usually be available two weeks prior to the season start date.
  • PAC10 (Saturday teams) game schedules ARE NOT AVAILABLE usually until the week that the season starts and is then sometimes posted one week at a time.  
  • All schedules will be handed out to parents ASAP, but they are subject to change throughout the season.
  • Schedules and maps to the fields can be found on the league website at


  • Tackle practices will be held at Osmond Park and possibly AUGS or Pederson 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 lace 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 games are all 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. 
  • 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!


  • There will be a banquet for all players at the end of the season. 
  • Each player gets in FREE and will have the ability to purchase two additional tickets towards the end of the season. The price of the tickets will vary year to year.
  • There is a dinner and an awards presentation. This is a perfect opportunity for parents to celebrate with their athletes and let them know how proud of them they are. 
  • Each team prepares 1 gift basket to be donated for raffle, normally coordinated by the team mom.

Other Potential Costs: 

  • Cleats, cups, socks, additional pads or equipment. Vikings will provide 1 mouth guard, after that you will be expected to provide your own.  
  • Snacks - half time and post game. 
  • Player and team pictures are taken by professional photographers, dates TBA, optional to buy.
  • Coaches gifts for the end of the year banquet.

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 the Antioch Senior Center.
  • All parents are welcome and encouraged to attend.
  • Board members can be contacted by email, please see email addresses on Board Member website page.