NNESL Heading Policy
In accord with the recommendations in US Soccer's Player Safety Campaign the NNESL has banned heading for players age 10 and younger for all NNESL activities including but not limited to NNESL play, practices and tournaments. When a player deliberately heads the ball in a game, an indirect free kick (IFK) shall be awarded to the opposing team from the spot of the offense. If the deliberate header occurs within the goal area, the indirect free kick should be taken on the goal area line parallel to the goal line at the point nearest to where the infringement occurred. If a player does not deliberately head the ball, then play should continue.
Competition level, U11 and younger (10 years old and under) No heading in practices or games
Competition level, U12 and U13 Heading training limited to maximum of 30 minutes per week with no more than 15-20 headers per player, per week
For those players designated as not being permitted to head the ball in games as identified in the above section the following modified law 12 will apply.
An indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team if a player, in the opinion of the referee, deliberately heads or attempts to head the ball.
If, in the opinion of the referee, a deliberate header or attempt to head occurs within the goal area, the indirect free kick will be taken on the goal area line parallel to the goal line at the point nearest to where the infringement occurred.
If, in the opinion of the referee, a player does not deliberately head or attempt to head the ball, then play shall continue.