COMMONLY ASKED QUESTIONS

WHAT IS FLAG FOOTBALL?

Flag football is a variation of tackle football which everyone is familiar with, but does not require equipment and is a non-contact sport.  It is also one of the fastest growing sports around the world! Why?  It’s a fast-paced game, easy to learn without the concerns sometimes associated with contact sports, and best of all it is incredibly fun.  Many of the same skills needed in tackle football are also used in flag football, such as throwing, catching, hand-offs and running…all in a safe and welcoming environment.
Our Spring Flag League is the second largest flag football league in Canada and has been seeing continued growth, year after year! 

HOW MUCH DOES FLAG FOOTBALL COST?

The cost for 2022 FALL/WINTER registration is as follows:
          League Fee  $200.00
          Football Canada Membership $15.00
          Football Manitoba Membership and Insurance $25.20
          TOTAL $240.20
(includes two game shirts/jerseys)

 

CAN I USE KIDSPORT OR JUMPSTART FOR MY REGISTRATION FEE?

All Football Manitoba Leagues are eligible for KidSport and Jumpstart.
When you apply for financial support from either organization you must provide the following information your application:

Funding Payable to:            Football Manitoba
Program Fee:                        $240.20 (tax included)
FALL 2022             Start Date:  Nov 5, 2022       End Date: January 28, 2023
WINTER 2023       Start Date:  Jan 28, 2023      End Date: March 31, 2023

Links to apply online:

Jumpstart  https://jumpstart.canadiantire.ca/pages/apply-for-individual-child-grants
KidSport  https://www.kidsportcanada.ca/manitoba/winnipeg/apply-for-assistance/

After you have completed your application with either of the above, use the KidSport/Jumpstart FLAG registration form to register with Football Manitoba.  You must provide your KidSport or Jumpstart application confirmation number which you will receive immediately after completing the application.  Once we receive a confirmation that your funding is approved  we will finalize your child’s registration and assign them to a team. 

If any information is missing on our registration form, if your funding application cannot be confirmed, or if you are denied funding, you must contact our office to discuss alternate payment arrangements before your child will be able to participate.


WHAT ARE THE AGES FOR FLAG FOOTBALL?

Flag football is open to players as young as 7 right up to 17 years of age.  To accommodate the recreational and competitive divisions, players are assigned using the following age groups based on their year of birth and the age they turn in the current year:

For 2022 Seasons
U10 – players turning 7, 8 or 9 in 2022 (born 2013-2015)
U12 – players turning 10 or 11 in 2022 (born 2011-2012)
U14 – players turning 12 or 13 in 2022 (born 2009-2010)
U16 – players turning 14 or 15 in 2022 (born 2007-2008)
U18 – players turning 16 or 17 in 2022 (born (2005-2006)

WHAT NIGHTS WILL MY CHILD’S TEAM PLAY?

SPRING SEASON – We try to schedule each age division on the same night as the previous Spring season.  Here are the tentative game nights by division:
    U18 (age 16 & 17)              MONDAYS
    U12 (age 10 & 11)               MONDAYS
    U14 (age 12 & 13)              TUESDAYS
    U16 (age 14 & 15)              WEDNESDAYS
    U10 (age 7-9)                     THURSDAYS
    Girls Only Divisions            THURSDAYS

Each team plays two one-hour games back-to-back each game night, meaning that over the 6-7 weeks of regular season teams will have 12-14 regular season games, followed by a playoff week, and for those lucky teams, a week of Championship games!

FALL/WINTER 2022 – Most age divisions play Saturdays at the UofW Axworthy Health and RecPlex.  U16 may play Sunday afternoons, same location

      WINTER 2023 – Most age divisions play Saturdays at the UofW Axworthy Health and    RecPlex.  Some Divisions will be scheduled at the North Soccer Complex on Leila.

CAN GIRLS PLAY FLAG FOOTBALL?

Absolutely, and in fact at the youngest ages the girls are some of the best players in the league. All age divisions are Coed with an ever-growing number in female participation year after year, including our new Girls High School Division for female athletes in grade 9-12.

WHEN DOES THE SEASON TAKE PLACE?

Our Spring season generally runs from the last weekend in April until the third week of June. Each age divisions is assigned a game night, and all games during the season are played on the same day of the week, Teams play 2 one-hour games back-to-back against two different teams each night.  The first game is played at 6:30 and the second at 7:30.
In some cases when games are cancelled due to severe weather, those games “may” be rescheduled on a Friday night, or at one of the locations having field lighting which also means some games would run later into the evening for the older age groups.

WHERE ARE GAMES PLAYED (SPRING)?

Games are held at one of several participating community football clubs around Winnipeg.  Our age groups have a specific “game night” which is the same night for the duration of the season.   These fields are located in virtually every area of the city and teams can be assigned games at any one of them each week. There is no guarantee that your child’s games will be at a field close to home due to the size of the league.
Flag football fields for games are quite a bit smaller than a regular football field. In fact, we usually have 4 flag football games being played at the same time on one regular tackle football field!

HOW OFTEN DO THEY PRACTICE (SPRING)?

Teams will typically practice once or twice per week.  The League has no requirement regarding practices and it is usually left up to the coach and parents to agree on a practice schedule for their team. However, we expect that all teams should practice at least once per week, but no more than 3 practices.
Practice days, times and locations are again determined with agreement among the team.  Practices can be held anywhere there is a reasonable green space.  School grounds or parks etc., are perfect practice locations as a large field is not needed for flag football.

HOW ARE TEAMS FORMED?

With the growth in the number of flag players, our pool of football coaches and parents that decide to coach flag football also grows.  Most of these coaches come back year after and invite the same players they coached in the previous season to play.  These coaches register their team with the League and their players register specifically for that team
We have an equal number of teams that we create from players that have never played before and do not have a specific team they want to play with.  Generally, we will group 10 players from the same area and create a team, then work to find a coach for the team.  In many cases one or more of the parents step forward to help coach, and have such a good time they come back and offer to coach again the following season!

 
HOW IS MY CHILD ASSIGNED TO A TEAM?

Almost 50% of our flag players register as individual players or “free agents” with no specific team they are to be assigned to, or with a specific coach.
Winnipeg has been divided into several “flag areas” based on boundaries used by the community tackle clubs.  Teams are made up of players within the same flag area for ease of practices and carpooling, etc.  Sometimes there are not enough available roster spots in your immediate area, in which case we would assign to the next closest team to your home area.
 

CAN MY CHILD BE ON A TEAM WITH A FRIEND?

The biggest job with a league of this size is creating the teams from individual players, but also making sure we do our best to ensure that all players are placed on the same team as their friends! 

NEW FOR 2022 – SMALL GROUPS – during registration, you are given the opportunity to register as part of a small group.  Your group would consist of your child and any friends they are wanting to play with.  The first child in the group to register will select SMALL GROUP on the form.  Once their registration is completed, they will receive a GROUP CODE via email to share with the friends, who in turn would enter that code when the register.  All friends are then connected to be assigned together onto a team.  This is not necessary if your child already has a team they are joining.
If you don’t know if the friends are playing or don’t have contact information, there will still be a spot on the form to list names of friends your child wants to play with if possible. 
We try to form our teams as early in the registration as possible on a first come-first served basis to allow us to get coaches in place with as much time before the season as possible.  Sometimes the friends might not register, or do so very late in the registration period after we have already assigned your child to a team.  While we will make every effort to juggle players to accommodate these requests, we cannot guarantee it.

IS FLAG FOOTBALL REALLY COMPETITIVE?

With the dramatic growth of flag football, we now offer a choice of two divisions.  COMPETITIVE and RECREATIONAL.

New players, or players that are not as concerned about winning or losing, we have the Recreational side.  Recreational is still competitive in that we do keep score and there are winners in every game, however most of these players and teams are newer and still learning the game!
For players or teams that have a few seasons of experience, they usually opt to register for the Competitive side.  Teams made up of very athletic players coming from other sports which is very common, will usually select Competitive even if new to flag football.  When a coach registers their team, they will select one or the other category.

The same goes for individual players.  If registering as an individual you can select either Recreational or Competitive depending on where you feel you child is at with their athletic ability.  We will make every effort to place them on a team according to your choice, however in some cases, especially for those that register late, the only spot available may be on a team in the other category.

 

MY CHILDREN ARE DIFFERENT AGES. CAN THEY PLAY TOGETHER?

The league does not allow players to move down an age group, however players are allowed to age-advance one year only by age.  Using the age divisions above as an example, a player that is 13 years old (U14 division) can move up to play with 14- and 15-year-olds (U16 division) however a 12-year-old (also U14) would not be permitted as they would be advancing 2 years by age

  WHAT IF MY CHILD HASN’T PLAYED FOOTBALL BEFORE?

We have a large number of new players at every age in flag football each season with no previous football background or experience., whether they are just starting off in organized sport, or adding another sport to another they currently play.  Whatever their background with sport, anyone can learn the game in almost no time! 

WHAT DO I NEED TO PROVIDE?

Along with your registration each player will receive:

– 2 game shirts (one for home games and another for away games)
– Mouth guard –  is not mandatory due to the non-contact nature of flag football.

Required

Players must to have a pair of shorts without pockets for safety reasons.  The shorts should be a solid color without stripes or designs to avoid confusion for players pulling for the flags!  Although these can be hard to find at the usual places to by children’s wear, they can be purchased through Football Manitoba in the registration form! 

Optional

Cleats – football or soccer cleats are recommended as long as they have molded rubber cleats only.  Good outdoor running shoes are also acceptable however when the grass is damp players are more likely to slip.

Football gloves are totally optional. There is no question that while football gloves can assist with catching the ball they are not required or recommended necessarily.