About Fort Hunt Youth Lacrosse (“forthuntlax”/FHYL)
At Fort Hunt Youth Lacrosse, we help kids reach their full potential through the great sport of lacrosse.
In today’s world, video games, “pay to play” sports programs, early sport specialization, and a “win at all costs” mentality can conspire against kids. We believe instead in the age appropriate, long-term athletic development of all of our kids, and are completely against the short term, win at all costs culture.
We work hard to ensure all of our players have a consistently high positive experience
We grow the sport by bringing lacrosse into new areas for boys and girls to try
We study the science of sports and take guidance from our national governing body, U.S. Lacrosse; the U.S. Olympic Committee; and academic institutions like the Aspen Institute and George Washington University.
We follow the governing principles of the Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) and the Lacrosse Athlete Development Model (LADM)
We partner with other leadership organizations, like USA Hockey, to improve the condition of youth sports one kid at a time
We have an aggressive and mandatory coach screening and training program to maximize the experience our kids have on the field
We want our kids to get outside, move, sample many sports, compete, and HAVE FUN!
Who Can Join Fort Hunt Youth Lacrosse?
Our footprint is primarily the Alexandria portion of Fairfax County, and we are oriented to kids under 18, but we don't want to exclude anyone.
Exclusive to League Play: If your pre-k, elementary, or middle school aged boy or girl lives within the boundaries of the West Potomac, Mount Vernon, Hayfield or Edison High School pyramids, including Fort Belvoir, they can play in the Northern Virginia Youth Lacrosse League (NVYLL) as a member of Fort Hunt Youth Lacrosse. Confirm your HS Pyramid by entering your address in the Fairfax County school boundary locator at:
Our goal is to provide the best possible opportunity for our youth to have fun, learn valuable life lessons, increase their physical literacy, improve their lacrosse skills, and compete to win at this historic North American sport.
"The fastest game on two feet!”
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Fort Hunt Youth Lacrosse (forthuntlax.org) is a recreational lacrosse club offering lacrosse to boys and girls from preK through 8th grade. Our constituency encompasses the Alexandria portion of Fairfax County, including Fort Belvoir. We operate all year round, but spring (March to early June) is our regular season and primary focus. Fort Hunt Youth Lacrosse (FHYL) is one of six sports that make up the Fort Hunt Youth Athletic Association (FHYAA).
Our goal is “to help all our kids reach their full potential through the great sport of lacrosse.” We welcome kids without regard to race, creed, color, ethnic, or economic background. We offer needs-based scholarships.
We organize the kids by age or grade; boys use birth date and girls use school grade.
The boys age chart is published on our home page so you can look up his age group based on his birth month.
We follow the US Lacrosse Athlete Development Model (LADM), which is derived from the long-term athlete development model and USA Hockey’s American Development Model. We meet the kids where they are developmentally, and progressively challenge them as they get older.
8U and 1st/2nd grade and younger are organized as “house leagues.” All local, all Fort Hunt players playing together.
Girls 3rd/4th grade and boys 10U and above traditionally play under the auspices of the Northern Virginia Youth Lacrosse League (NVYLL). The NVYLL season normally includes 8 regular season games (starting 23 March in 2019) and play-offs in early June. Most teams will get four of the eight games at home, which would almost always be CSMS or WPHS. Away games can be anywhere in Northern Virginia.
We welcome players of all experience and skill levels. Our players range from brand-new, to kids on their way to playing High School Varsity and beyond. We are organized to support that full-range.
Players are rostered based on their age, years of experience and relative competitiveness. We evaluate the kids in the pre-season to be able to assign them the level of play that should give them their best experience for the season. NVYLL requires us to field teams at the A level, Upper B (UB) level, and Lower B (LB) level. Team assignments are typically made in late February or early March. Once team assignments are made, we may close registration for that age group.
Most of our practices will be held at CSMS, WPHS and Whitman MS, a combination of turf and grass fields. We follow US Lacrosse “Dose and Duration” guidelines: kids practice more often and longer as they age up. Most teams will practice two or three times a week with Boys league games normally on Saturdays (starting at 8 or 9 am or later) and Girls normally on Sundays (starting at noon or later).
Girls require only a stick, eye protection, athletic shoes and mouth guard for field players. Cleats designed for turf and cleats designed for grass are recommended. Goalies wear additional protection, including helmets, throat guard, gloves, chest protector.
No jewelry (including new ear piercings) is permitted during play. Girls and boys are required to remove all jewelry, so we recommend leaving bracelets, necklaces, earrings, etc. at home or in the car.
Boys lacrosse is a full contact sport at 12U and above. 8U and 10U does not permit body checking, but there is still substantial contact (pushing, holding, boxing out). All boys 8U and above require a stick, helmet, mouth guard, shoulder pads, arm pads, gloves, protective cup, and athletic shoes. Protective pads must be designed specifically for lacrosse. Goalies wear a chest protector and throat protector. Boys helmets may be any color; they normally come in white and we offer opportunities to purchase discounted custom Fort Hunt Green and Gold helmets. The recommended stick for boys youth players is the Warrior Warp.
Warrior Warp Mini
Warrior Warp Jr
Warrior Warp Evo
We offer loaner gear to new players of all ages and team discounts at several local and on-line retailers. Scoopers just need a stick and one will be provided.
We are staffed by both amateur and professional coaches. Just as you would not send your kid to a dentist or doctor who is not board certified, our coaches are required to train and certify under our National Governing Body, US Lacrosse. We offer subsidized live coaching clinics in the local area several times a year and no-cost on-line training. Our coaches understand the important role they play and the potential impact on a child’s life.
We expect our coaches to be 100% positive, and to nurture cognition, competence, and character; players capable of finding space, creating solutions, and executing good decisions in the face of an adversary.
New coaches should understand that 80% of the job is character development, fungible across most sports, and 20% sport specific. Basketball, soccer, and hockey coaches, especially, can make for great lacrosse coaches, as the sports are so similar.
Here are the current requirements to coach Fort Hunt Youth Lacrosse:
Have a good attitude, focused on making the kids' experience as good as it can be
Be a member of US Lacrosse valid through June 2019 (reimbursement available)
Read, understand and agree to the FHYAA and NVYLL codes of conduct
Receive a positive (Green Light) NCSI background screening (no charge)
Complete the basic Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) training, in person or on-line (no charge)
Complete the CDC Concussion Training, on line (no charge)
Complete the Level 1 US Lacrosse online course or live clinic (Assistant Coaches)
Certify US Lacrosse Coach Development Program (CDP) Level 1 or higher (Head Coaches)
Complete “How to make proper contact” US Lacrosse online course (boys’ game only)
For questions or further understanding, please go to our website forthuntlax.org or contact one of our commissioners: