Balanced Teams is AYSO's third and probably most difficult philosophy to fulfill. Balanced Teams are instrumental for kids to learn soccer. It allows kids to win some games and lose some games. This allows kids to stretch to achieve in a framework where if they stretch they are able to succeed.
Balanced teams is essential to maximize the fun that the kids have. If teams are not balanced, it hurts both winning teams and losing teams. If your team wins all the time, the game gets boring because it is too easy. Where is the sport in that? And if your team loses all the time and doesn't have a chance to win, that is disheartening as well. Kids need achievable challenges to make a game exciting, interesting and fun. If it is fun, kids put their energy into the game and learn more.
Balanced Teams is AYSO's most difficult philosophy because it is hard to achieve and parents often don't understand why their kid cannot be on a team with all their friends or their favorite coach. It is hard to achieve because kids develop at different rates and coach ratings from the past season may be imprecise. Also practice time availability puts many constraints on who is on what team. Parents also don't understand that in order for teams to be balanced, some friends may need to play on different teams. However one of the great things about kids is that they often make friends easily so this is an opportunity for kids to make new friends in a safe environment. Plus all coaches have strengths and weaknesses. It is beneficial for kids to experience different coaching styles and for coaches to gain experience coaching different kids.