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The Boston Red Sox know a thing or two about getting people excited about sports. Every summer, they run a hugely popular baseball intensive that over five thousand kids attend. Why is this camp a favourite for parents and kids alike? Cara Savarese, Senior Associate of the Boston Red Sox Baseball Camps, talks to us about why sports camps are so awesome, and why your young athlete will love them.
1. Development of foundational life skills:
Camp helps build the whole child, not just the athlete. "We place intentional focus on the development of foundational life skills (leadership building blocks). Campers are going to have a ton of fun, but they're also going to be learning about and developing these character traits that help kids thrive at every level - we're a very mission-driven organization, so having fun is an important piece, but it's not the whole picture: we aim to inspire each camper's personal best - both on the field and off."
These leadership building blocks—optimism, resiliency, self-efficacy, emotional mastery, goal setting and grit and determination—are the foundation of Boston Red Sox camp curriculum. When choosing a sports camp, make sure to evaluate how they train their coaches and engage with the campers. Building foundational life skills is just as important as player development.
Camper with Xander Bogaerts, short stop for the Boston Red Sox
2. Continuation of training:
Players who keep training all year round are obviously more prepared for next season, but the unique focus on sports during summer training can actually push your athlete even further. "By pairing physical principles with clear-cut vocabulary, the time necessary to understand fundamental baseball skills is compressed, resulting in greater development over a shorter period of time", says Cara. This is true for sports camps, no matter what sport. Having training intensives allow kids to focus on their skills and develop as athletes much more effectively.
3. Love of the game:
Sports camps are a great way to build a kids confidence. Because kids are united by sport, it's much easier to engage with other players and find common ground. Kids learn how to effectively work together and develop their love of the game. "There are campers that develop a greater love for the game and may even realize it’s their new favorite sport, some come out of their shell and become more confident (this is one of my favorite things to hear from parents) and some gain new friends from their week with us", says Cara.
Sports camps teach kids to work effectively with others, and the fundamental teamwork skills they acquire at camp can be applied to just about any setting. According to Savarese, "the elements of baseball, and other sports camps by nature, give campers (and coaches) countless teachable moments. Learning to hustle on and off the field despite making an error during the inning or “picking up” teammates when they strike out (just to name a few). All of these moments provide character building opportunities and I think these moments translate to so many things that happen off the field and in life.
Camp provides a unique environment where kids are stimulated without having the option of going back inside and being glued to a screen. "Days at camp are packed with activities", says Savarese, but the activities are meaningful and meant to teach the kids something. There is far too much opportunity for kids to spend their summers sitting on the couch and playing video games. When a child goes to sports camp, they are improving their physical health without even realizing it. To them they are just playing with friends and having fun.
Must-have sports camp gear from New Balance, Boston Red Sox Baseball Camps sponsor, will ensure your camper performs their very best at every level. Click on your favourite product to shop now and support your own fundraiser.