Football camp season is in full swing as kids across the country gear up to improve their football skills within a competitive environment. With options plentiful (local youth, high school, college or NFL led)- how do you choose the best clinic for your kid? We think it is pretty simple- (1) hear or read reviews on the camp and (2) use a set of criteria to find a youth football camp with a qualified staff that challenges your child to reach the peak of his potential.
Having attended many youth football camps across the country, I can say all camps are not created equal. Operationally, some camps will not feature enough coaches while other camps may have too much downtime (where kids are just standing around). Hearing a positive review on a camp offers a stamp of approval, and this is important when you’re spending money and time on the experience. Ask a neighbor or post the question to your Facebook friends, any feedback is useful.
Next, you will want to contact the camp and ask questions.
How many coaches will be leading the camp?
What is the overall goal of the experience- how will my kid get better?
Competition is important, are 7-on-7’s planned?
A good football clinic/camp will also have focus on child development outside of football, such as the importance of good grades.
Here’s an overview of various camps:
NFL player led -If a big NFL name is leading the camp, chances are it will be full. Your kid may create more of a memory at this camp, learning from a pro. The instruction may or may not as great, depending upon the assistant coaches. These gatherings are generally more expensive.
College youth football camps– Colleges often have the staff (college assistance coaches), the facility, and proper instruction all in one. This is a generally a favorable experience at a reasonable price.
High school camps– Often you will find independent football training companies offering camps at high schools. Make sure to research by Googling the coaches before signing up.
Youth football camps in community– Sometimes free half or full day camps in your town. Awesome opportunity to learn football without breaking the bank!
Overall, expect your football camp/clinic experience to be great; it is an opportunity to get better and make a few new friends.