How to Preparing for Camp?
Attending sports camp is a great way to learn new skills and practice the old ones. Every parent ready to send their children off to camp have to work out how to best prepare their youth athlete for camp. This preparation is two-fold. One part includes a check-list with all the material needs that athletes may have at camp, and the second part comprises of the mindset that campers must develop.
The very last thing you want to do is send your athlete to camp without all the essentials. A basic packing list for any athlete attending a sports camp is as follows:
- Sun protection: Pack a hat or a cap that will keep the sun of their faces. Sunglasses and lots of sunscreen are a must too. It is best to include some insect repellent and hand sanitizer.
- Clothing: Other than what the athlete will wear while playing (sports gear), ensure that you pack a few sets of shorts and t-shirts, extra socks and underclothes, and depending on the season, a light rain jacket or sweatshirts. It is always advisable to carry swimming trunks because even camps that focus mainly on a particular sport might offer opportunities to cool off in the pool.
- Sports gear: Safety equipment along with special footwear like cleats or sneakers, depending on the sport, is important. Pack extra sets of workout clothes too.
- Toiletries: Other than what your child uses on a daily basis, pack some basic first-aid supplies like bandages and blister pads. A small bag can be of great use, especially if the shower rooms are at a distance from the dorms/sleeping areas.
- Miscellaneous: Check with the camp director about whether your child will need to carry a sleeping bag, bedding or bed sheets. Pack a flashlight with extra batteries and a bottle for water. Some camps do not allow electronic devices like cameras, MP3 players or phones so check with the camp before you pack any of these. Packing a book and pens is a good idea because some camps require campers to take down notes during instruction.
When it comes to packing material things, it is always better to err on the side of caution. Better to have extra than to have to do without!
Preparing the Mind
You’ve packed everything that they might need during camp, but your job is nowhere no close to done. You will also have to prepare their minds for summer camp. These are a few areas you can prep them in:
- Attitude: The right attitude can change the way you learn. This is why all campers don’t come back with the same experience. How much you learn often depends on your attitude toward camp and coaches, as well as your innate willingness to learn. Remind athletes that they are going to camp to learn, and that a vessel that is already full can no longer fit in anything new.
- Nutrition: The summer heat can be brutal and keeping yourself hydrated is of extreme importance. Ensure that the athlete is drinking plenty of water before and during camp. This will make it easier to sweat it out during drills. Eating good food regularly is very important. Missing meals at home or camp is a strict no-no. If they do not eat on a regular basis, chances are that they will not have the strength needed to perform during camp. Worse yet, the lack of energy may lead to a loss of concentration and subsequent injury.
- Safety and Warm Up: Before you select any camp for your child, ensure that the camp authorities follow proper safety standards and have the right equipment at hand. In case of contact camps in particular, it is very important to ensure that all safety procedures are being followed, and first-aid and medical attention is immediately available. Camps like USSC NIKE Contact Football Camps have a sterling reputation because they ensure that contact is introduced in a gradual progression, and safety is held paramount. Warm ups and post-game hydration is also important. Often players ignore warm ups and pre-drill routines because they want to start playing sooner. But the fact is that static as well as supervised dynamic warm ups ensure that your body is flexible and ready for scrimmage and play-time.
While most camps introduce new techniques and play-offs in a gradual manner, you might find some that burden campers with a lot of important information that they may or may not be able to absorb completely. Before camp starts, it might be a good idea to ask the camp director if the sessions will be filmed and whether it possible to get copies of the same. This way the information your athlete did not manage to take down will also be available to you. On can consult university of Illinois football camps for more football techniques.
Lastly, an infusion of positivity can change everything! Remind them that the focus of camp is to learn to be a better player as well as a better person.
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