The equipment for soccer required by the FIFA Laws of the Game are:
- a jersey or shirt
Most youth recreational soccer leagues will provide everything but the shinguards and the footwear.
According to FIFA, shinguards should be "made of a suitable material (rubber, plastic, or similar substance), and provide a reasonable degree of protection. This leaves a lot of wiggle room!
Please read my reviews & recommendations for shinguards before purchasing them for your child. This one piece of equipment for soccer could determine the well-being & safety of your child!
Be aware also that most baseball cleats cannot be used for soccer because shoes with toe cleats are not allowed. Soccer cleats are specifically made without the toe cleat.
Oh and BTW, open-toed shoes are a NO NO!
A soccer ball, perhaps?
Although only one soccer ball is "required" to play a game, I recommend (actually I insist) that each player own their own soccer ball. Click here for a discussion on selecting a soccer ball.
Why is the US soccer program behind many other countries? Because kids in the other countries grow up with a soccer ball. They play it, live it, and breath it every day. Kids in the US grow up with – yes, you guessed it, a baseball. Perhaps a bit oversimplified but you get the picture.
It is critical that kids get to play with a soccer ball as much as possible.
What field equipment for soccer should you own?
I highly recommend a practice goal.
The short answer is because it can make a big difference to your child. I know personally it has made a huge impact on my son.
You will not regret buying a soccer goal for your family.
My recommendation if you have the space is a 6' x 12' goal. It's a great size for goal keeper practice and playing around. Check out my soccer goals discussion for more information on goal equipment for soccer.
Other equipment that would be nice to have includes soccer cones, equipment bags, and other training devices.
Check out my training aids page for specific information related to that topic. There is some good stuff to consider.
Another good method is to browse a soccer store for ideas of what equipment for soccer is available. My personal recommendation is to use SOCCER.COM . They are dedicated to soccer and have an incredible selection.
Soccer-for-Parents is excited to now offer our Simple Soccer Rules to parents "on the go". This is our own free android app (sorry ipeople) that installs in seconds and contains everything on our normal rules page along with a link to the official FIFA rules and USYSAA rules. Here is the free app!
(ad free version here)