BSA News

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  • 29 December 2021 11:52 | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    The BSA is thrilled to be starting Winter Soccer and our BSA/BBA Winter Baseball Academy in January. Even in cold weather - it is important for children to move their bodies. Doing so is an important element of both physical and mental health. 

    However, BSA parents often have questions about playing in cold weather. Is it safe? When is it too cold? How can I keep my child warm and healthy when temperatures drop?  

    That's why BSA Managing Director, Jodi Harris, sat down over email with ISB Raiders Athletic Trainer, Jared Maisel. We are thrilled to get his insights on what parents, coaches, and players should keep in mind during the winter months.

    We are so grateful to Jared for taking the time to speak with us and we hope you find his insights helpful.

    Is it okay to play in the cold? 

    Yes, generally speaking it is safe to participate in sports during cold weather. However, there are some considerations that may be necessary, especially if the participant has an underlying health condition (like asthma or cardiovascular disorders). 

    In fact, environmental conditions are one of the reasons why young athletes should see their doctor annually for a physical before joining in sports. So, one of the first recommendations is to seek evaluation by your family physician to ensure safe sports participation on an annual basis, especially if your child has a pre-existing health condition. 

    Moreover, please consult with your doctor if your child develops any issues that could be cold-weather related - like difficulty breathing, abnormal skin conditions or severe extremity pain.

    What can be done to keep arms, legs, feet, and hands warm to reduce the chance of injury? 

    You may have heard people say, "There is no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing." While the research is mixed on whether cold weather causes illnesses like cold/flu, some conditions like frostnip, frostbite, chilblain, urticaria, and hypothermia may develop in cold weather.

    To reduce the chances of developing cold weather health conditions, players should be prepared with layers of clothing. As they warm up and clothes become sweaty, athletes can remove excess layers of clothing. This can help prevent hypothermia and frostbite. Waterproof shells for rainy conditions are also recommended to prevent saturation from rain, snow or sweat. 

    Furthermore, consider warm coverings for the head as it is one of the the main areas for heat loss. Players should be prepared with high quality socks and gloves to protect the extremities as these are the first sites for frostnip/bite.

    What should players do beforehand to warm up and prepare for outdoor play - i.e. to reduce the chance of injury? 

    It is a good idea to start warming up before arrival to practice/event. When possible, consider warming up indoors, at home. If that’s not possible, warming up at the practice site for 10-20 minutes with dynamic movements will make it more comfortable for the body to transition into the cold.

    What should athletes do after playing in cold weather? 

    Stay hydrated! Many athletes mistakenly do not consume enough water during cold weather training. They may have the perception of decreased need for hydration during cold weather activities; however, this is not the case. Even in cold weather - athletes need to drink enough water. 

    Moreover, in cold weather, our bodies need to work harder to maintain normal core body temperature - potentially increasing our nutritional demands. Athletes should eat a healthy snack within a 20-minute window following training, and then a more complete meal within a couple hours afterwards. 

    Furthermore, after training, athletes should cool down with static stretching and/or foam rollers. Foam rolling is one of my first recommendations to young athletes to improve recovery and reduce injury from tightnesses. If your family does not have a foam roller, I would recommend acquiring and educating young athletes on how to properly utilize them.

    When is it "too cold" to play?

    We are fortunate in Belgium to have fairly mild winters and to be at low altitude compared to other regions. However, in the winter months the wind chill temperature (WCT) should be monitored for sports participation. The wind chill temperature can make even a relatively mild winter day feel much colder.

    According to the NATA Position Statement on Environmental Cold Injuries participation should be modified in the follow WCT conditions:  

    • -1.11°C WCT=  Be aware of the potential for cold injury and notify appropriate personnel of the potential.
    • -3.89°C WCT =  Provide additional protective clothing, cover as much exposed skin as practical, and provide opportunities and facilities for rewarming
    • -9.44°C WCT =  Consider modifying activity to limit exposure or to allow more frequent chances to rewarm.
    • -17.78°C WCT = Consider terminating or rescheduling activity.

    Parents and BSA coaches can keep these recommendations in mind when making decisions about whether or not to modify or cancel a scheduled activity.

    What other considerations should parents, players, and coaches keep in mind during cold weather play?

    Another concern in cold weather athletics is the field/surface condition during the winter season. Artificial surfaces become more slick and freezing temperatures may develop icy spots. 

    Athletes should be prepared with appropriate footwear in sizing, material and spike size/type. Shoe wear is an important consideration. Cleats should be in good condition and generally replaced every season (depending on usage). Parents should check the sizing and cleat condition and also check that the players shoes are appropriately laced and tied.

    Coaches may adjust their practice planning by selecting appropriate drills and work:rest ratios for the environmental conditions. Furthermore, coaches should focus on and encourage fundamentals like participants' athletic stance, lowering their center of gravity, and chopping their feet to maintain a short stride length. 

    We look forward to seeing you all this winter! Register your child for Winter Soccer or the BSA/BBA Winter Baseball Academy here.

  • 10 December 2021 13:06 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    BSA/BBA Winter Baseball Academy Registration is Now Open!

    At long last! Covid has been throwing the BSA and our partners at the Brussels Baseball Association, lots of curve balls these last few weeks. But, we are now thrilled to be sharing registration information for the BSA/BBA Winter Baseball Academy. 

    Important Information on Pre-Registration

    We fully expect the Academy to move forward as planned, however, due to the ongoing unpredictability of the Covid-19 situation, we are opening registration in a pre-registration format. We ask that you register your child to reserve your spot, but please choose "INVOICE ME" on the payment screen. You will then receive an email before the Academy start date with information on how to make your payment. We hope this will cut down on administrative processing in the unfortunate event that we have to cancel.

    Quick Facts

    • The BSA partners with the Brussels Baseball Association to contract with stellar, experienced baseball players to serve as coaches in the Academy.
    • One of our most popular programs, the Academy is designed to give players a high quality training and serve as a "quick start" to the Baseball season - whether they continue on with the BSA, their school team, or a local club.
    • All training sessions will take place at our partner school, the International School of Brussels. Due to the Covid situation and potential restrictions on indoor play, the clinic will take place outdoors. Any opportunities to move inside in the event of bad weather will be communicated to families on a case-by-case basis during the season.
    • The Baseball Academy is open to boys and girls of all skill levels. Assessments on Opening Day and the information you provide in your registration form will support coaches in creating a balanced training structure and groupings.
    • Players will be provided a uniform shirt and baseball cap. A non-refundable €30 uniform fee will be applied. Players should bring their own baseball glove. Bats are provided, but players are also welcome to bring their own bat.
    • Opening Day for both U13 and U18: Thursday, January 27. 
    • U13 Regular Training Days and Times: Sundays, 10:30 - 12:00 (dates on registration page). Register here.
    • U18 Regular Training Days and Times: Sundays, 12:00 - 13:30 (dates on registration page). Register here.

    We look forward to seeing you on the field!

    Questions? 

    Please email BSA Managing Director, Jodi Harris or BSA Baseball Director, Sandy Grant, with any questions.


  • 29 November 2021 12:02 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The BSA's current Managing Director, Jodi Harris, will be moving in the Summer 2022. Due to the dynamic nature of the position and the cycle of BSA sporting events, we are beginning the search process as of December 1, 2021. The incoming candidate will begin April 1, 2022.

    The BSA Managing Director is a fun, dynamic and engaging, part-time, salaried position. We are looking for candidates who:

    • Believe in the BSA mission to connect families, inspire and develop player potential, and cultivate a passion for sports across the international community of Brussels.
    • Can work independently with a high degree of professionalism and integrity.
    • Have a solid administrative and technical skills.
    • Are comfortable in positions of leadership.
    • Are capable balancing competing priorities across stakeholder communities.
    • Are highly organized.
    • Have exceptional written and verbal communication skills in English.
    • Have a minimum of 5 years' non-profit and/or program management experience.
    • Are positive, solution-oriented, and adept of problem solving.
    • Are legally authorized to work in Belgium.

    Review the complete position description and requirements here.

    Hiring Timeline:

    • Application submissions: Dec. 1 - Jan. 17
    • Interviews: Feb. 1 - 15
    • Selected Candidate Notified: Feb. 21 - 25
    • Training (approx. 5 hours/week): March 7-31
    • Start of Contract: April 1, 2022

    To Apply:

    Please submit your resume or CV, with a cover letter and list of 3 references no later than January 17, 2022 to BSA Board President, Jamie Martino, with the subject line "BSA Managing Director Application." 

  • 11 November 2021 16:11 | Anonymous member (Administrator)



    EU Covid Safe Ticket (CST) Required for BSA Events at ISB This Winter

    We are so excited to return to our partner school the International School of Brussels (ISB) for our winter season. Basketball registration is already underway.  We are currently finalizing details with the ISB Athletics Department for the start of Winter Soccer and the BSA/BBA Winter Baseball Academy for January 2022.

    The BSA and ISB remain deeply committed to creating a safe return to sports for our players, volunteers and their families. In line with guidelines from the local authorities - all visitors to the ISB campus (parents, coaches, and volunteers) will be required to present a Covid Safe Ticket (CST) when accessing the ISB campus. We will be sharing more details as we get closer to the start of the sports seasons. However, please do not hesitate to contact us with questions in the meantime. 

  • 28 October 2021 12:07 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    We are pleased to announce the return of BSA Basketball this winter! 

    QUICK FACTS:

    • All practices and games will be held at ISB.
    • U8 Co-Ed will have 90 minute training sessions on Sundays.
    • U10 and U13 (Boys and Girls) will have Monday evening trainings and Sunday games.
    • Space is limited this season - so be sure to register soon! And, don't forget, you can join our waitlist to reserve your spot in case we have more space.
    • We need volunteer coaches and logistical support! Email BSA Managing Director Jodi Harris to learn more.

    READY TO REGISTER? JUST FOLLOW THE LINKS

    U8 COED

    U10 BOYS

    U10 GIRLS

    U13 BOYS

    U13 GIRLS

  • 19 October 2021 10:28 | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    THE BSA IS SEEKING TO FILL 2 LEADERSHIP POSITIONS TO BEGIN JANUARY 1, 2022.

    AND WE'RE WONDERING...

    Are you looking for a dynamic, career-related volunteer opportunity that provides the chance to make a difference in your community?

    Are you ready to advance your career goals and build your resume, even if you are only in Belgium for a few years?

    Do you have solid professional credentials, but aren't sure how you'll use them in your current assignment to Brussels?

    Is your background in communications, advancement, organizational development, or program management? Or, are you interested in adding to your resume in these areas?

    Do you want to get involved in the local community in Brussels, but want the work to be both meaningful and career-minded

    THE BRUSSELS SPORTS ASSOCIATION IS WHERE YOU SHOULD BE!

    For nearly 65 years, the Brussels Sports Association, a registered Belgian not-for-profit organization, has been the leader in youth sports programming for the international community in Brussels. The BSA connects families, inspires and develops player potential, and cultivates a passion for sports across the Brussels international community.

    And yet, we are so much more than that! 

    We have a core belief that a stronger, more connected global community can make a difference far beyond the pitch, the field or the court. And we know it is our volunteers that hold the keys to our success. 

    As an almost entirely volunteer-run organization, the BSA is a place where each aspect of the organization - including communication, financial development and strategic goals - are established, implemented and cultivated by our incredible volunteer leadership team. Our Board of Directors is a working board in which each member is an integral part of our organizational success. 

    If you come from a globally mobile background - you know how important this is! Not just for the organization, but for the opportunity it provides to develop non-profit leadership skills for those who serve on our Board of Directors. 

    In short, the  BSA is the perfect place to give back to your community while also meeting your own career-related milestones. 

    LEADERSHIP AND THE FUTURE OF THE BSA

    As with many organizations, the Covid-19 crisis offered us the opportunity to realign with our values and mission and recommit to providing a stronger foundation for the BSA to thrive. We are thrilled that we have kept the organization alive during these challenging times and are dedicated now, more than ever, to ensuring the ongoing sustainability and development of the BSA. Bringing in strong, committed and dynamic new leaders is part of that commitment!

    We are seeking to fill the following two, part-time, volunteer leadership positions on our Board of Directors (click to view the complete job descriptions):

    Board Vice President

    Director of Communications

    How To Apply:

    Please send a letter of interest and your resume or CV to BSA Managing Director Jodi Harris and BSA Board President Jamie Martino. Please put the position for which you're applying and your name in the subject line. 

    Positions Open Until Filled

    Questions?

    Contact us with any questions about the positions or to learn more about the BSA. 

  • 15 October 2021 15:59 | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    We are incredibly excited to announce the return of BSA Basketball this winter at the International School of Brussels! We have been working diligently with our partner, ISB, to ensure we can return safely and within the Covid-19 guidelines. We cannot wait to get back on the court at ISB! 

    But first...

    Having been away for almost 2 years, we are now working to build our volunteer capacity so that we can offer a fun and dynamic season for as many players as possible. As you know, the BSA is an almost entirely volunteer-run, not-for-profit organization. We simply would not exist without our parent coaches and our volunteer program directors.

    We need you!

    We plan to open BSA Basketball registration for players in U8, U10 and U13 by November 3. Before registration opens, we are doing a preliminary outreach for potential volunteers - coaches and logistical/administrative support.

    Based on responses, we will determine the number of spots we can make available in each age division. 

    Why volunteer?

    If you love basketball, enjoy shooting a few hoops with your kids, or played when you were young and wouldn't mind getting back out on the court - join us!

    Don't worry if you haven't coached before! As a BSA Volunteer Basketball Coach, you will participate in a short, online first-aid and child safe-guarding orientation and will have access to tons of great resources to help guide your training sessions and prepare your team for their games. 

    Plus, this season we also have some logistical positions open. These positions are a good fit for people who are organized and want to get involved, but maybe don't feel ready to coach. 

    Ready to Volunteer?

    Please fill out our Basketball volunteer interest form here. The form includes all the information you will need to check your schedule and better understand the level of commitment needed. Once you submit your response, we will be in touch to talk with you more.

    What about Basketball Registration?

    We look forward to sharing registration information soon. Finalized details about the Basketball schedule, plus registration information will be announced by November 3.

    Email BSA Managing Director, Jodi Harris, at  with any questions. 

  • 30 September 2021 10:56 | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    The BSA is excited to announce that Meghna Bansal
    to the BSA Leadership team!

    Thank you Cliff Lucas

    The BSA is grateful for the incredible leadership of outgoing Finance Director, Cliff Lucas, who has served the BSA with great dedication and commitment since 2017. Cliff will be working closely with Meghna in the coming weeks to ensure a smooth handover. We are also happy that Cliff, his wife, and new baby will still be here in Brussels. Perhaps we have a future soccer player in the works?

    Meghan Bansal

    We are also thrilled to have Meghna joining us and are happy to share a bit more about her here!

    Meghna Bansal is a Chartered Accountant from India and has moved to Belgium with her husband and son in Spring 2021. She is an ISB parent and is excited to join BSA as Finance Director. She has previously worked with PwC, Deloitte and now practices independently. She also writes articles on various social topics and many of her articles are published in newspapers. Travel, dance and cooking are her hobbies, but Vedic astrology is her passion. She’s a certified astrologer and loves to guide people to right direction. She has been in social services in India and has been volunteer teaching economically disadvantaged children.

    Join Our Team!

    Are you interested in joining the BSA Leadership team? The BSA runs on the dedication, commitment and energy of an all-volunteer, working board. Becoming part of our leadership team is a wonderful opportunity for globally-minded individuals to deepen their professional skills, while growing their community and giving back to their current home city. If you would like to learn more about current positions or ones opening soon - please email BSA Managing Director, Jodi Harris

  • 27 September 2021 11:19 | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    One of the most challenging experiences as a parent can be watching your child struggle. This is especially true when it's something you hope they will enjoy. At the BSA, we are passionate about helping our young players enjoy sports while also developing lifelong skills like empathy, perseverance, and teamwork. 

    We often hear from parents with questions about what to do if their child is having a difficult time adjusting to their BSA sport. We can, of course, try to offer guidance, but each child is unique and sometimes it can be difficult to truly know what is happening with a child.

    That's why BSA Managing Director, Jodi Harris, sat down over email with ISB Elementary School counselor, Kathryn Manu to ask some questions related to what we most frequently see parents struggling with. We are so happy to share her answers here, plus offer some links to resources your family might find useful. 

    We are grateful to Ms. Manu for taking time out of her busy schedule to speak with us. We hope you will find these ideas and tips as useful as we do!

    1. My child isn't on a team with his friends. How can I help my child adjust to being on a team where he'll be making new friends?

    Sports teams are naturally a great conduit to connection. Validate that it might feel awkward at first being on a team without close friends, yet (emphasizing the yet). Remind your child that connections often take time to develop, but that the odds are high it will happen so long as your child maintains an open attitude. If it seems appropriate, invite new teammates over to play or get to know each other better off the pitch too.

    2. My child feels shy, afraid or uncertain about joining sports. How can I reassure them while encouraging them to give it a try?

    It’s normal to feel apprehensive when starting something new! It’s helpful to talk with your child about how it takes time to feel comfortable both with a new peer group and with a new activity.

    Sports are meant to be, and most often are, really fun ways to stay active and healthy. What are some other times in their lives that they had to start something new and ended up really enjoying it (perhaps a previous school experience, a musical activity, etc.)?

    Some children appreciate a parental attitude that is open to negotiation - perhaps you agree that the sport commitment is for one full season but after that, if it’s not a good match, your child does not have to continue.

    It might also be helpful to remind them that the BSA community is one whose core values include positivity and inclusion - it’s a very safe and supportive environment to try out a new sport and meet new people!

    Remember you don’t have to ride your child’s emotional roller coaster - be calm, active listeners while at the same time encouraging a resilient mindset and reminding your children about the commitment that comes with being a member of a team. 

    3. My child gets really upset when things don't go their way on the pitch. How can I help my child cultivate a growth mindset before and after the training sessions or games?

    Developmentally, it is typical for children between the ages of 2-9 years old to find emotional self-regulation highly challenging. This skillset develops more fully during preadolescence as the prefrontal cortex of the brain begins to strengthen and the growth in this area continues through early adulthood. This being said, younger children and older children alike benefit from activities/conversations that help them recognize what they are feeling before it becomes explosive, and most importantly what strategies or tools are available to them to help them feel more in control of their emotions.

    Talk to your child about what is happening in their bodies when they start feeling upset or frustrated. Where do they feel it? Teach your child some simple strategies too - mindful breathing is always a great one, as is some positive self-talk like: “this isn’t a big deal”, “BSA is meant to be fun and not super competitive”, and “I can do this”. Role playing with your child before a game or practice can be very effective - recreate situations that are upsetting to your child and go through the variety of options available to respond to the situation. I always tell children the following: You can’t control the actions of other people, but you CAN control your reaction! 

    4. I want to better understand my child's experience with sports. What types of questions should I be asking my child about their experience with sports?

    Sports are such a wonderful opportunity for your child to have independence while building connections with adult mentors (coaches) and peers. Some great questions to ask your child after a practice or game are, while respecting their autonomy, are: 

    • What was something you enjoyed today? 

    • How did your team work together? 

    • How does it feel when your team scores a goal? 

    • What are some hopes you have for yourself and for your team this season? 

    • How can I support/help you have a great experience here? 

    5. Sometimes I think I'm too involved! What strategies should I keep in mind to handle my own feelings (worry, frustration, anger) when my child struggles with sports?

    Ultimately you want your child to gain independence and to have positive connections with other adults and peers. In fact, your current and future relationship with your child will be better if you can recognize when you’re crossing a boundary and take a step back. You are not reliving your own childhood through your children nor is your role to ensure that they never experience anything negative. What is more, struggling can actually be an enriching opportunity for positive growth and development. When your child is having a hard time in any way, it’s best to be supportive and to listen, without offering your opinions and without rushing to try to solve their problems for them. If you’re concerned about your child’s behavior at sports, reach out to the coaches to see if this is typical for the age group.

    For most other things, remind yourself that BSA is not competitive (there are other options in the community for more competitive sports) and that your child is there to have fun, learn something new, and be surrounded by good people. Also, not all sports are for every child! Help your child learn what their strengths are and what brings them joy.

    At the end of day, involvement in sports helps nurture a healthy and active lifestyle while building connections!



  • 13 September 2021 11:32 | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Did you notice a new face on the pitch at the opening of BSA Fall Soccer? That's Yannick Thieulin - BSA's newest team member!

    Yannick joins us as a third year student from Loughborough University in the UK where he is studying sports management and marketing. He is not new to the BSA though - Yannick is an ISB graduate (Class of 2019) and was a CAS Student Coach for soccer.

    Like most BSA community members, Yannick has spent his life moving around the world. He has lived in France, Madagascar, Nigeria, Ethiopia, and Belgium. We know that this perspective will bring great energy, enthusiasm and creativity to the BSA. 

    Yannick will be supporting the BSA in a variety of roles throughout the 2021-2022 school year. Be sure to say hi the next time you see him!

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BSA Sports
Youth Sports in Brussels since 1958

Brussels Sports Association 

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