Pro Sports Experience Blog
We love working with our friends at 30Second Mom–who knew you could learn so much about our camps in just :30 seconds?! Watch for another video coming next week.
July is National Anti-Boredom Month–how are you celebrating? We encourage you to checkout our July camp dates and register your little athlete for one of our non-contact football camps for kids ages 6-14. There is still space available in some of our camp locations, but you need to register soon to reserve your space and kick summer boredom to the curb! Click on the team links below for a full calendar of locations and registration information.
July 7-11: Arlington Heights, Frankfort, Lincolnshire & Wilmette
July 14-18: Barrington, Chicago (Lane Tech), Evanston, & Libertyville
July 21-25: Chicago (St. Ignatius), Geneva, Glen Ellyn & Northfield
July 7-11: Kenosha & Oshkosh
July 14-18: Glendale & Green Bay
July 21-25: Elm Grove & Madison
July 7-11: Denville (NJ), Old Brookville (NY), Princeton (NJ), Rye (NY)*, Tom’s River (NJ) & Wallingford (CT)
July 14-18: Basking Ridge/Bernardsville (NJ), Freeport (NY), Livingston (NJ),
Midland Park (NJ), Stamford (CT) & White Plaines (NY)
July 21-25: Clark (NJ), Florham Park (NJ), Manhattan (NY), Hauppauge (NY), New Canaan (CT), New Rochelle (NY),
and Wayne (NJ)
July 7-11: Cherry Hill (NJ)*, Lancaster (PA) & West Chester (PA)
July 14-18: Newtown (PA) & Wilmington (DE)
July 21-25: Bethlehem (PA)
*Those camp locations are currently sold out, but you can be placed on a waiting list.
Wear Sunscreen: Look for an SPF of 30 or higher especially if you will be spending a big chunk of your day outside during peak sunlight hours (10 AM-4 PM). We always think about coating our legs and arms, but don’t forget other areas that are exposed to the sun–nose, ears, hands, feet, shoulders, and behind the neck. Lips can also burn, so apply a lip balm with SPF protection. Even if your child is wearing waterproof sunscreen, you should reapply every 2 to 3.
Cover Up: Need to know if your clothing will protect your child from harmful UV rays? Place your hand inside the garment and make sure you can’t see it. In addition to clothing, send your child outside with a hat that will shadow his face.
Get Shady: Make sure kids spend time resting in a shady area in between their busy activities. If you are unable to find a nice, cool shady area, create one by bringing a pop-up tent or large umbrella. When kids take their break, it is the prefect time to re-apply the sunscreen and drink plenty of water.
Stay Hydrated: Let your child drink as much water as possible and insist on frequent water breaks–even if they think they don’t need one.
You Tell Us: What tips do you have for keeping your kids safe in the sun?
- With all kids do at camp, they will be too tired to argue with siblings when they get home.
- They will have the opportunity to make new friends, which means new carpool opportunities for Mom.
- Although impressed by their great Minecraft ability, Mom is looking forward to her kids being outside and active this summer.
- While Mom thinks it’s great that her kids can quote SpongeBob SquarePants, she is really happy that they will be surrounded by positive (and REAL) role models.
- Mom can’t wait to hear the stories from camp, especially those that involve how the shirts got so dirty and why her car smells like the inside of a gym locker after camp pick up.
You Tell Us: What is your favorite reason for sending kids to one of our camps this summer?
Checkout our camp schedules to see when we will be in your neighborhood and contact us today to reserve your space.
Chicago Bears Youth Football Camps
Green Bay Packers Youth Football Camps
New York Giants Youth Football Camps
Philadelphia Eagles Youth Football Camps
What does it take to be a coach at one of our summer camps? Here are just a few of things that make our coaches so great. Do you have what it takes to make this team? Our coaches:
Keep Kids Safe
Safety is a top priority for our camps and our coaches believe that keeping kids safe means showing them how to properly play the game. ”Coaching football gives me the opportunity to teach our youth the proper and safe way to play football by teaching the fundamentals and stressing proper technique,” says Coach Bill Hesslau, of the Chicago Bears Youth Football Camps.
Teach Important Life Skills
Our coaches realize that football is more than just a game–it is also a way to teach campers skills that will serve them throughout life. ”What I love most about coaching is teaching young men and women not only the skills of the sport, but the life lessons that go with it,” says Coach Patrick Dowling with the New York Giants Youth Football Camps. ”At the end of the day, the greatest joy is seeing the sense of accomplishment and joy in their faces when they have achieved success as an individual and as a team.” Adds Coach Keith Vanden Heuvel of the Green Bay Packers Youth Football Camps: ”Football, more than any other sport, requires everyone to work together in order to achieve success. It provides daily opportunities to reinforce important life lessons in leadership, responsibility, teamwork, and service.”
Want to Give Back to the Game
Our camp coaches are experienced players and/or coaches and have a deep appreciation for the game of football and what it has done for them. ”Coaching football gives me an opportunity to give back to the game that has given me so much,” says Coach Jason Hendry of the Chicago Bears Youth Football Camps. “I wouldn’t be the person I am without the life lessons I learned through playing football. Philadelphia Eagles Youth Football Camps Coach Dale Smith agrees: ”It allows me to share the tools I’ve learned throughout the various levels of play. It allows me to make a positive impact in a student-athlete’s life.”
Love an Excuse to Play Their Favorite Sport All Summer
What could be better than spending your summer playing the game you love? Nothing, if you are one of our camp coaches. “There is nothing like the rush you get on game day, the culmination of all the hard word you put in throughout the week. Behind my wedding day and the birth of my children, there is nothing like it,” says Coach Dave Morgensen of the Green Bay Packers Youth Football Camps. And, Coach Al Crosby from the Philadelphia Eagles Youth Football Camps sums it up best: ”Play hard, play fast and think smart! I love this game.”
Our summer camps will soon be starting and with so many kids getting ready to hit one of our non-contact youth football camps this summer, we thought we would give some tips on what to bring. Wait, you still haven’t registered? There’sstill some room in some of our summer camp locations. Checkout our website to see when your favorite team’s youth football camp will be headed to your neighborhood!
Regardless of which camp you will be attending, Monday morning check-in opens 45 minutes prior to the official start of camp. A parent or guardian must accompany the camper to check-in and is required to pick up the camper at dismissal each day. Each remaining day, simply arrive by the camp start time. Campers should bring a lunch, water bottle with name on it, sunscreen and towel each day of camp. A mouthguard is optional but recommended. Wear athletic shorts and athletic shoes. While you may wear cleats, always bring tennis shoes in case we use an indoor gymnasium or get muddy. Campers will be issued an officialcampt-shirt at check-in. Peanut Products: A number of children with nut/peanut allergies are attending our camps. To further assist these campers, we are asking that you refrain from packing nut/peanut products in your child’s lunch. We will have designated nut/peanut-free tables at which these campers will eat their lunch.
Can’t wait to see all of our campers soon!!!
This weekend marks the unofficial beginning of the summer seasonâ€”are you ready?Â To kick-off the summer season, grab your family and friends and head outside for some old-fashioned backyard games.Â Hereâ€™s a list of ideas to get you startedâ€”with some football fun twists to keep your little athletes at the top of their game.
As a non-contact camp, we love flag football!Â Divide your group into two teams and have each team place flag belts on their waists.Â Donâ€™t have flag belts?Â Stick socks into the elastic waistband of playersâ€™ shorts.Â Play a regular game of football, but instead of tackling, pull the flags instead.
Red Rover, Red Rover
Have players get into two lines of equal number facing each other.Â The teams take turns calling out â€œRed Rover, Red Rover, send (personâ€™s name) right over.â€Â The person you named leaves their line, runs as fast as they can toward the other line and tries to break through.Â If they break through, they get to take someone back to their team.Â If they donâ€™t, they join the new team.
Football Twist:Â If your kids have been practicing their football skills, have them use offensive and/or defensive techniques to try and break through the lines.
One person is Simon and says, â€œSimon says, (whatever the action).â€Â Everyone must do the action. However, if Simon says an action without saying â€œSimon saysâ€, anyone that does the action is out.
Football Twist: Â Make Simon the â€œCoachâ€ with all actions instructing players to do common football tasks such as â€œ3-point stanceâ€ or â€œpassâ€.
Kick the Can
Place an empty can in the middle of the yard to serve as base.Â The person who is â€œitâ€ counts to 100 while everyone else hides.Â The person who is â€œitâ€ searches for the others, and when someone is found the two of them race back to see who can kick the can first.
Football Twist:Â Instead of a can, make a football for base.Â The first person to kick it (or pick it up) is the winner.
Duck, Duck, Goose
Players sit in a circle while one person (the â€œfoxâ€) walks around the outside of the group, tapping heads and saying, â€œDuck, duck, duck, duckâ€¦â€ until they name a â€œgoose.â€Â The goose has to chase the fox around the circle and sit in the empty spot.Â If the goose tags the fox before he/she gets to the spot, the fox is it again.Â If the fox gets to the spot before being tagged, the goose becomes the fox.
Football Twist:Â Instead of saying â€œDuck and Gooseâ€ have the kids say â€œHut and Hikeâ€.
What games do you pan to play this weekend?
You are getting ready to sign your child up for a summer sports camp, but before you make that final decision, consider having a meeting (or at least an email exchange) with the camp director or counselor and ask the following questions:
What is the experience/background of the coach?
For this question, you want to go beyond just his/her credentials as an accomplished athlete that can show your kid some skills and see if the coach will be able to truly handle the challenges that often come with youth sports.Â Are they certified in CPR/first aid?Â Can they recognize heat exhaustion and know what changes to make in the schedule should temperatures rise? Are they educated on concussions?Â Also, ask if they have experience working with kids your childâ€™s ageâ€”there is a big difference between coaching high school players and first year kindergartners.
Can you describe a typical day at camp?
While there may not be a â€œtypicalâ€ day at camp, you should get a good idea of how the days are structured. Ask what kind of activities are held at the beginning, middle and end of the camp day as well as how many water breaks will be allowed. This is also a great time to inquire about changes in the camp schedule should weather affect their activities.Â What happens if it is too hot?Â What happens if severe storms enter the area?
What kind of equipment will be used?
For sports camps, there is almost always equipment involved.Â Whether it is mats for wrestling, rackets for tennis or agility ladders for football, you should ask what kind of equipment will be used and how often it is checked to make sure it still works properly.Â Also, make sure that camp counselors and coaches have been trained in using the camp-offered equipment and ask if there is any additional equipment your child needs to bring.
Can parents participate?
Not that you want to actually participate in the camp activities (or, maybe you do!), but is it all right for parents to watch the camp activities from the stands?Â Ask what the camp policy is on parents hanging around and do not be offended if you are asked to reduce your presence to just coming at the end of the camp day to watch a scrimmage or match.Â In many instances, a child will actually have a better camp experience if their parents are not as accessible during the camp day.
What questions do you always ask before sending your child to camp?
As we prepare to celebrate moms everywhere (just a reminder, Motherâ€™s Day is this Sunday, May 11!), we want to give a nod to our fabulous camp moms.Â These moms are making it happen for their children everydayâ€”making sure they are eating right, getting exercise and participating in school and sports.Â They are giving their children the very best opportunities to succeedâ€”not only now, but in the future.
That is why they continue to choose our youth football camps to be a part of their childâ€™s summer adventure.Â Why?Â Weâ€™ll let them tell youâ€¦.
â€œI have never seen him so happy.â€
My son loves it, I have never seen him so happy. He loves his coach, he gets lots of positive mental feedback on his athletic abilities and he wonâ€™t put the football down. Thanks for the great program.â€
â€œBy the close of the first day of camp he was enjoying it and looking forward to the next day.â€
â€œThe coaches and heads of the camp have been fab!!!! My nephew, who is in town just for the summer, is attending for his first time and has never played organized football. He is eleven and that is such a hard age to walk in not knowing a soul and play sports. By the close of the first day of camp he was enjoying it and looking forward to the next day. Thank you!!! Keep up the good work!!!â€
â€œHe is improving his individual skills while also realizing the importance of team dynamics.â€
â€œMy son is having an absolute blast! He is improving his individual skills while also realizing the importance of team dynamics. He seems highly motivated to fully participate and is excited about the remainder of the week.â€
â€œHe has really internalized some of the sportsmanship and life lessons being taught, as well as football skills.â€
â€œHe has really internalized some of the sportsmanship and life lessons being taught, as well as football skills, and for that I am most happy. Today one of the teams he played against in a camp scrimmage lost a touchdown because of excessive celebrationâ€“ YES!!! That is a lesson he needed to see and hear from someone besides his parents. And Packers hero John Anderson shared a nice story about determination and never giving up. I appreciate the excellent organization and the focus on keeping the kids healthy and safe.â€
â€œHe was really impressed by the pros that came to visit.â€
â€œYour awesome coaching staff made this camp fun while teaching all the kids so much about the game and the skills needed to be the best they can be. My son is very passionate about football and this was such a wonderful opportunity for him. He was really impressed by the pros that came to visit as well! Thank you for providing such wonderful instruction in such a positive environment. My son will never forget this week (and he is already talking about next year!) Thanks again!â€
â€œWith one adjustment made by the coach, he changed his throw for the better. He was elated.â€
â€œMy boys like the games and the great passes from coaches who play QB. Our sons are in year 4 of your camp so they feel like regulars now so that helps. They like learning and practicing skills. Today our 13 year old had a one on one lesson on passing. With one adjustment made by the coach, he changed his throw for the better. He was elated.â€
â€œMy son loves the camp.â€
My son loves the camp. Every day he has come home raving about the camp and how much he is learning!â€
â€œThis will only be his 2nd season, so it is nice to see he will be caught up in the skills required.â€
“My son is having an AWESOME time. I like that he is learning so much. He will be going into 6th grade and this will only be his 2nd season, so it is nice to see he might be caught up in the skills required.â€
On behalf of all our campers:Â THANK YOU, MOM!Â