It’s only February, but it’s not too early to start thinking about your plans for the summer. Children get excited when summer break rolls around for the vacation from school, but experienced parents know it doesn’t take long for them to get bored sitting around the house! Summer camps are a great way for your child to spend time during the summer—plus then you get some time to yourself.
Summer camps come in all shapes and sizes, but they all have certain benefits in common like learning independence and getting a break from technology. Sports camps in particular have additional benefits with keeping kids active, building confidence, and more! Even if your child isn’t yet an athlete, there are camp options for beginners as well as experienced competitors. Here are five good reasons to sign your child up for a sports camp this summer.
Children need a chance to spread their wings. At a sports camp, they are typically away from their parents all day for a week or more. At school they are surrounded by friends and comfortable in the environment they’ve been in since preschool. Summer camps present less familiar territory. It’s a great opportunity for them to learn independence and to combat any fears they may have of being on their own.
Chances are sometime throughout that week they’ll have a rough day—maybe because they don’t feel they’re performing well or maybe they will run into a social challenge with another child. Even if it happens at the beginning of the day, they know they have to push through without your guidance or comfort. They can ask one of the organizers for help, but that is also a skill children have to learn—asking for help from someone they’re not used to.
Sports camps are tough! Physical activity for the majority of the day, learning new things a good portion of the time—if there’s one thing you can bet on, it’s that your children will come home worn out. They will inevitably hit times that they want to quit or sit down or leave early, and they’ll have to push through. Then when they reap the rewards of a breakthrough or two during camp, they will learn that hard work is worth it.
Children need exercise. It helps keep them healthy and to create good lifelong habits. A sports camp will ensure that for at least a week in the summer, your child is getting great exercise and learning how good it feels to be active.
Nothing ups your game like a week of consistently working at the same sport. For beginners, it can be a fun immersion into something new where they come out knowing whether they want to pursue the sport throughout the year—and if they do, well they’re much better prepared as a camp graduate.
For athletes who already compete, summer camps are a must if you want to be the best that you can. It’s a good refresher in the middle of a long break and you’ll find that many athletes have large breakthroughs during camp because of the long days and back-to-back sessions.
Times sure have changed, huh? Children today have access to so much technology—video games, smart phones, smart TVs. Good parents, as I’m sure all of you are, limit children’s access to these devices, but for most it’s a part of life. During the summer, it’s harder to keep tabs on the amount of time spent with technology because your children aren’t in school. Sports camps provide a week of long days where you know your kids won’t be staring at a smart phone or jiggling a controller.
One last thing, if your child isn’t naturally an athlete or doesn’t seem interested in team sports, there are other options! Here at the Academy of Fencing Masters, we have a beginner fencing camp that was a great success in 2014 with 40% of campers joining the club to continue fencing—no experience required. For experienced fencers, we also have a competitive camp.
Regardless of the option you choose, do your kids a favor and start looking for a sport summer camp soon.