SCHOOL in Summer might not sound like everyone’s idea of a good time, but the FAI have a different idea.
The annual event that is the association’s fun-filled camp for children is officially open for business, with full details available for a number of local venues.
Several local venues will host camps this Summer. Derdimus, the home of the Kilkenny & District League, will open with a mainstream camp from July 2 to 6. It will also host a goalkeeper camp from July 4 to 6, as well as a girls only camp from July 9 to 13.
There will be mainstream camps in Durrow, at the home of the Lions club, and in Bagenalstown from July 9 to 13.
Three more mainstream camps will be held locally in August. Clover United will host the first in Rathdowney from August 6 to 10. Highview Athletic will have their camp in Harristown from August 13 to 17, while Paulstown 06 will have a camp in Paulstown from August 20 to 24.
The mainstream Camps cater for all players, regardless of ability. Participants on the camps are grouped according to ability and age to ensure that everyone gets the most out of being on the camp, as well as the attention needed to improve as a player.
Beginners will learn the fundamental skills needed to be a player and receive a fun and dynamic introduction to soccer. More seasoned players will focus on more technical and skill-specific training, while everyone will come together in the afternoon to participate in mini-leagues and small-sided games.
The principles of football taught on the programme include warm-ups, skill development, fun games, dribbling, passing, shooting, defending and heading, as well as small-sided games.
The goalkeeper camp, which will be held at Derdimus this year, will focus on this key position on the field of play and will improve the confidence and skills of the participants through training drills and exercises designed solely for goalkeeping.
Budding ’keepers will be put through a specific goalkeeper warm-up, as well as learning about stretching and flexibility for netminders. The camp also covers footwork as well as working on receiving balls at various heights, diving and reaction drills and other parts of the game such as distribution, dealing with the pass back and saving penalty kicks.
There will also be a girls only camp in Kilkenny this year. Open to girls aged from 6 to 14 years, the camp has been inspired by the successes of the Irish women’s international teams.
The camps run independently from mainstream camps and come with their own exclusive kit.
Fees for the mainstream and Girls Only camps are E89 if booked before June 15 and E99 after that. Cost of the Goalkeeper Camp is E59 before June 15, E65 after. Discounts are available, depending on the number of camps or places booked per family.
Bookings can be made up to five days before the camp start date. Late bookings can be made after the cut-off date, if spaces are available, but will cost extra.
Each player who signs up for the camp will get a full kit of shirt, shorts and socks, as well as backpack and football. Players can have their shirt personalised with a name and number for E10 extra.
There is also a competition on the Summer Soccer Schools Facebook page where parents can win the chance for their child to play at half-time when the Republic of Ireland take on Bosnia & Herzegovina in an international friendly at the Aviva Stadium on May 26.
Bookings can be made online at www.summersoccerschools.ie or by calling 1890-653653. The camps begin on July 2, the day after the final of the European Championships, and run until August 24.