Lake Zurich Flames Youth Football And Cheerleading
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Frequently Asked Questions:

Why register my child for flag football? Great question! Sparks flag football with the Lake Zurich Flames is a terrific way to get your child outdoors, active and learn the fundamentals of the game in a safe and fun learning environment. Over 100 boys and girls from the Lake Zurich/Hawthorn Woods community are involved in the program and so many K-2 children benefit from the Sparks flag program by building their confidence while establishing relationships with kids their age as they get ready for the upcoming school year. Parents benefit too! Many new and young families in the LZ/HW area have found our flag football program to be a great way to meet other families in the community. So many families have come away from the flag football experience with life-long family friends. 

Are there age and weight restrictions?  If your child is entering Kindergarten through 2nd grade for the 2024-2025 school year, they are eligible to play flag football with the Lake Zurich Flames. No weight restrictions.

My child is in 3rd grade, why can't he or she play flag football? Third graders promote to our beginner youth tackle program called the Bantam level. The beginner youth tackle program is a very developmental and gentle start to the youth tackle experience. The beginner level of youth tackle football (Bantam) heavily emphasizes safety, proper technique and basic fundamentals of the sport. Many parents of children with various skills and abilities have found the Bantam level to be the perfect avenue to have their child get acclimated to tackle football. Parents and their athletes come away from the first time tackle experience feeling that the level of contact and the "intensity" of the game is acceptable and even less than they had initially anticipated. Parents have also reported that children learning proper technique and safety at a young age (8-9 yrs old) has given their kids an advantage and kept them safer as opposed to beginning the tackle experience at an older age (11-12 yrs old). This Fall, please consider coming out to Knox Park to watch a Bantam tackle game or a Bantam practice to learn more! You can always reach out to a Lake Zurich Flames board member for more details. 

When does the flag season start?  Tuesday, August 6th is our first official day of practice for the 2024 season. Practices are on Tuesdays and Thursdays at Knox Park Game Field. Practice times will be 5:30pm - 6:30pm. Games will begin on Sunday, August 18th. All games will be played on Sundays at Knox Field at either 9am or 10am. 

​​​​​​​What kind of time commitment can my child expect?  Flag football is about 2-3 hours a week-2 practice days and 1 Sunday game (1-hour).

When are teams announced?  Teams will be announced at the first flag practice on Tuesday, August 6th. 

How are teams formed? Is there a skill evaluation period for the young athletes? Some flag football communities have what's called a "combine" which is when young children are evaluated based on their skills. There is no skill evaluation of kids or drafting before we create the flag teams. The feeling is that the children are too young and too new to the game of football and it would be unnecessary and overwhelming for all involved, especially the kids. An evaluation period will discourage many young children from participation by developing an atmosphere of intensity, overly competitiveness and possible disappointment as their skills and abilities are assessed. We create a patient learning environment as athletes are expected to learn the game at their own pace as the season advances. All team rosters will have a balance of new and experienced K-2 kids. The team roster coordinators will consider age and prior flag experience when developing team rosters while also attempting to honor friend or coach requests made during registration. We do the best we can to make sure all teams are balanced with different ages and levels of experience. By the end of the season there will most likely be some teams that are more successful than others due to various circumstances independent of the initial roster formation. Please keep in mind, the ultimate goal is for the children to have fun, make friends, LEARN and develop a love for football. Winning is secondary in this flag program. 

How can I register to coach a team?  You can register to coach on the Registration page on our website. There is a link to signup for 2024 Coaching. Please get your name in early so that we have plenty of time to plan for the season. Teams will need as much coaching support as possible so please consider coaching even if it's one practice a week. NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY!

What equipment is required?  The only required equipment is a protective cup, a mouth guard and a large water jug or thermos. You will be provided a t-shirt with your team color that you get to keep after the season.  Padded flag football pants are given to athletes to use but will be required to turn in after the season. We also recommend cleats but they are not required. Gyms shoes are acceptable. Flags are provided at practices and games. 

What size football do you use?  Footballs will be loaned out to head coaches for practices. The size we use is a Wilson K2 PeeWee football if you want to buy own to play catch with your child.

Additional Questions? Please contact the Flag Football Coorindator; Chris Cranstoun -