1 Registration process
1.1 Why does ABF charge for the usage of iDeal and Credit cards ?
Any website that uses iDeal gets charged for using it. We have selected a provider that charges the minimal amount for the volume of iDeal transactions that we generate. rather then accumulating these charges and then charging them on an allocation key basis we think it is fairer to pass on the charge to the person who has the benefit of using iDeal.
Note that by selecting a cheaper provider and a direct charge model we were able to save about 1500 Euro, a benefit which we can translate into lower membership fees.
Credit card and Paypal payments attract a higher fee which we pass through at cost.
It is no longer possible to pay by bank transfer; it simply was too much work to keep on chasing people who forgot to pay and as iDeal and credit card are readily available we concluded that we could do without.
1.2 What should I fill in under "shipment address"
The "shipment address" is not relevant in our case. You can use the default (=equal to invoice address")
1.3 Why does my credit card not work?
If your credit card is not protected using the "3D secure
" protocol our payment provider might decide to reject the credit card payment. In that case we suggest you pay by using Paypal. Even better is to pay using a iDeal (linked to a Dutch bank account); iDeal payments are significant cheaper (for you) than credit card payments.
2.1 What are the competition levels?
- Recreational – this is ideal for beginners who are interested only in baseball practice and learning skills without competing in games
- Tee-Ball (BeeBall Rookies) – for ages 10 and under; this is ideal for kids aged 5-7 and for first-timers up to age 10. The tee-ball team competes in a KNBSB BeeBall league, usually once a week, and 8-12 games per season. Tee-ball teams play on a triangular field rather than the normal baseball diamond (3 bases rather than 4). This is a great team to start playing baseball.
- Coach Pitch (BeeBall Majors) – for ages 12 and under; this is ideal for kids aged 8-10; more advanced 7 year-olds and beginner 11-12 year-olds could also play on this team. This team competes in the KNBSB BeeBall league. The team coach pitches to his/her batters and this can be overhand or underhand. This is a fun format while still promoting a competitive spirit. There are usually 2-3 innings each game, for 1 to 1.5 hours and always full of runs scored and hitting. The game moves quickly and since there is lots of hitting, there is plenty of practice for fielding and defense. Teams bat around 1 time each inning rather than hitting until 3 outs are reached.
- Kids Pitch (Pupillen) – for ages 12 and under; this is ideal for kids 11-12; more advanced 10 year-olds could also play on this team; each team has a dispensation to also allow upto 2 players at ages 13-14, pending league approval (although these players will not be allowed to be pitcher or catcher in games). This is the level where kids learn to pitch (each pitcher will have a pitch count limit per game). Games tend to move at a slower pace as compared to Coach Pitch, as kids are just learning to pitch.
- Kids Pitch (Aspiranten) – for ages 15 and under; this is ideal for kids 13-15; the game is played on larger diamond compared to the Pupillen level (bases are 23 meters apart, compared to 18 meters in Pupillen; pitching mound is about 1 meter further from homeplate)
2.2 When does the season run?
The Spring season normally starts in early-April and runs through mid-July; since the last school day at ASH is normally around the 3rd week of June, we usually try to re-schedule our July games within April – June so that we play our games before the school summer break. The competitive teams will continue into a short Fall season which starts in late-August and runs to early-October.
2.3 Is travel required for games?
Yes, for teams participating in competitive leagues (all teams except for Recreational), travel to away games is usually within a 20-km area (e.g. Leiden, The Hague, Voorschoten, Alphen aan den Rijn). Some of our teams have played in Haarlem, Amsterdam, Rotterdam but these are usually exceptions.
2.4 How frequently do teams practice?
Teams will normally practice once a week during the season; parents and players should be willing and committed to attend most practices throughout the season.
2.5 When are games playes?
Usually on Saturdays, sometimes on Sundays, rarely during the week. We try to schedule Saturday games for afternoons so that we try to avoid clashes with soccer.
2.6 Where are games played?
Home games are played at the ABF Field (the baseball diamond nearest to the ABF Clubhouse). Away games are played at other baseball clubs, usually within a 20-km area (e.g. Leiden, The Hague, Voorschoten, Alphen aan den Rijn).
2.7 Who coaches the ABF teams?
Parent volunteers. We solicit volunteers at the start of each season and each team has 1 head coach and ideally 2-3 assistant coaches. The more help we have, the more repetitions and quality practices we can run.
2.8 What equipment do I need?
Required is a baseball glove, nice to have are baseball/soccer cleats (rubber/soft type). Although not required (since ABF provides them), some kids may like (and are welcome to use/bring) their own bats, batting gloves, and batting helmet.
2.9 What about uniforms?
Each player on a competitive team will be required to purchase a uniform in addition to their registration fee. Our uniforms usually don't change from year to year, so if you have one from last year that still fits, you are welcome to use it.
2.10 What is KNBSB?
It stands for Koninklijke Nederlandse Baseball end Softball Bond (The Royal Dutch Baseball and Softball Association).
2.11 What can I do to help?
Volunteer to coach, be a team parent (help to organize drinks/snacks after games, team events/get-togethers, etc.) or help us to manage our stores and equipment.
2.12 How do we spend the income generated from our baseball program ?
The income generated from our baseball program is used to cover the following cost.
3.1 What’s the difference between playing for the KNVB team and the rec program?
The KNVB league is the local Dutch league and plays a 9 month season. The competition runs from September to May of each year with a winter holiday break (practices start in August and continue into May). The ABF KNVB teams meet 3 times per week: two trainings and one game. Games are played both at home on the ABF fields and away at other fields usually within a 20 minute drive. KNVB league play begins at the F division.
Athletes playing on KNVB teams are expected to be on-time for practice and games, as well as attend at least 80% of training sessions and games. It is a team commitment and players are expected to attend.
Again this season (2014-2015) ABF C, D, E and F teams will have trainings on Wednesdays/Tuesdays and Sundays with professional trainers.
The KNVB league begins with the F division for players born in 2006-2007; match duration: 2x20 minutes (E: 2004-2005, 2x25 min; D: 2002-2003, 2x30 min; C: 2000-2001, 2x35 min; B: 1998-1999, 2x40 min).
The recreational soccer program is an intramural program that takes place on Saturdays and Sundays at ABF in the spring and fall, and an indoor clinic program in the winter.
3.2 Will soccer practice continue if it rains ?
We definitely do play soccer in the rain...we live in the Netherlands. However, if the fields are too saturated, it is not safe to play on them. If this is the case we will send you an email to notify everybody that training will be cancelled.
3.3 Coaching is a skill, will I be able to do it ?
Of course! ABF is always looking for volunteer coaches. Coaches who volunteer prior to the season starting will be invited to complimentary training sessions and all coaches will receive support regarding small-sided approach. ABF will provide coaches plans for activities and drills, and help setting up the small-sided fields. It’s a great opportunity to get involved with kids and help develop their love for sports.
3.4 Do parents stay during training and matches ?
Yes. Parents are strongly encouraged to stay and support their children and the club. Our trainers are working with many athletes and our coaches are volunteers. They cannot be expected to take sole responsibility for the needs of the athletes.
The club is a volunteer-run organization. Parents and athletes are encouraged to help with clean-up and set-up activities.
3.5 Where can I find the training schedule for all soccer teams ?
You can see the club schedule (including the training schedule) on the main page of our web site
3.6 Does the club provide referees ?
For all our teams - whether F, E, D, C or B - the principle is that a volunteer parent referees at home games and no financial support is given by the club. When it comes to the D and C level, a.o. due to playing full pitch, the refereeing becomes more challenging - so more difficult to get volunteers. Dutch clubs don't have the same problem, as they either developing/educating referees or force their older players to contribute as referees. Parents can decide on a team by team basis to pay for hired referees in this case.
As the fees are the same for all teams, we have as such not included referee fees for D and C teams and thus have no budget for it. We will monitor this situation and assess if in future seasons we need to offer the referee services as a package in the KNVB C and D fees.
3.7 How do we spend income generated from our KNVB program ?
Income from KNVB players is used to cover the following cost.
3.8 How do we spend income generated from our recreational soccer program ?
The income from our recreational soccer prohram is used to cover the following cost.
4 Soccer Uniforms
4.1 Is a uniform required for recreational soccer?
There is no hard requirement to have your kids use a uniform in the recreational program but we strongly encourage it as it contributes to the sense if community. Experience shows that our players are typically proud to wear the ABF uniform.
4.2 How do we receive the uniform we ordered ?
When you "order" a unfiorm on our web site you will receive an email with the (most recent) arrangements in place to collect the uniform.
4.3 What uniform size should I order ?
The sizes for the uniforms can be tricky...the kids, often times, have to try them on. The sizes are as follows: XXXS, XXS, XS, S, M, L.
4.4 Have the uniforms changed over the last years ?
On purpose we haev not changed the uniforms over the last coupel of years to avoid the cost parents would incur if we were to change them.
This does mean that it is perfectly ok to reuse unfiroms used by sibllings/friends etc.
The ASH eear end garage sale is a great place to scout for cheap 2nd hand ABF uniforms.
4.5 Can I purchase another uniform in person at the facility during the first practice?
In the first couple of weeks of each season our Unifrom coordinator will be present inthe club house on SAturday mornings for folks to pick up the uniforms they ordered.
As soon as you order a uniform (component) you will receive an email from our uniform coordinator informing you about the latest arrangement and what to do if the standard arrangement does not work for you.
You can wait putting the order until you arrive at the club house, but it does make things a lot easier for us if you put in your order before so we can be prepared when you show up which is important because paricularly in the beginning you will not be the only one looking for a uniform :-)
4.6 What else do we need apart from the uniform ?
Soccer players need proper soccer cleats and shin guards for their safety.
5.1 Can I see an overview of all activities throughout the year ?
Sure. Click here for a quick overview of all ABf activities over the year
5.2 We lost something, did you find it ?
Towards the back of the club house we have a lost and found - but we do empty it at the end of each season, so don't wait too long looking for stuff (anything lost at ASH, will be in their L&F)
5.3 Can I get a refund in my little one does not like it ?
We would like everybody to enjoy their experience at ABF. If for whatever reason you conclude after trying one or twice it does not work then we will refund you the money you paid. See terms and conditions.
5.4 Can I help in any way ?
It’s your club and you are welcome to volunteer! There are volunteer opportunities with programs, fields, publicity, facilities, uniforms, web site development, and the board, to name a few. Let us know how you’d like to help—and we’ll put you to work! For more information on how to volunteer, send an e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org
5.5 The website looks like a commercial webshop; I thought ABF was non profit ?
Absolutely ! ABF is a non profit and 100% volunteer organisation. There are two reasons we base the design of the website on a webshop platform. It is both cheaper (helping us to keep are overhead cost minimal) as well as it allows us to automate all the administration which means that we make less mistakes and reduce the amount of time it takes.
5.6 Is ABF only for kids that go to ASH ?
Whilst the majority of the kids that participate in the ABF activities indeed come from ASH the club is open to kids attending other schools. in fact we do have kids that go ISH, the Britisch School or Dutch schools in and around Wassenaar.
5.7 Can you keep me up to date of all that is happening at ABF ?
To stay up to date on what is happening @ ABF signup for our newsletters.