Why should my child attend a summer camp?

Your child has been coming two or three times a week to fencing practice. That’s great! So, if they have been coming regularly, why should they spend a week at fencing camp? Here are the top ten reasons:

1. They will get to experience activities we don’t do during the weekly classes. It might be a new skill, game, or set of bouting partners. Fencing camp is NOT a repeat of what we do with the kids during regular Bronze or Silver class. Some of the concepts will be familiar, especially if we need to drill weak areas, but they will get something new out of camp.

2. It builds team spirit and camaraderie. Spending three hours (or a whole day) with a small group of teammates helps fencers get to know one another better. Since fencing is an individual sport, this helps create the sense of teamwork that is crucial for success.

3. It gets the kids out of the house. You might need time for errands, you might be tired of the kids wanting to just play video games all day; this is a great outlet for their energy and will give them something “productive” to do.

4. It helps build confidence. A fencer who has put in extra time at the salle will feel more prepared and therefore more confident. The internal game of fencing is SO important; anything that builds “mental muscle” can help lead to more successful outcomes on the strip.

5. It’s fun. We play a lot of fencing games, tell silly jokes, play cards and board games during breaks, and really enjoy the more relaxed environment. We work hard but we play hard too.

6. It will improve their fencing. This one kind of goes without saying. Obviously the more you practice, the better you’ll get. Camp allows the coaches to see fencer mistakes and correct them as they happen. We make a concerted effort to give positive feedback to help create a secure environment where fencers feel comfortable trying new actions.

7. It can help them introduce a friend or family member to fencing. Our sessions are structured so that all campers spend about half the time together in a large group and half in skill-level groups. Your fencer will see that they really HAVE learned a lot, compared to the beginners at camp. They can fence their friend/family member by the end of the week (after the new fencer learns to bout). What better way to settle sibling disagreements than a duel in a controlled environment?     

8. It will improve their physical fitness. Sustained physical activity at camp will help your fencer increase their fitness level. It also will show them that they are capable of more than they thought possible. This is essential for laying the foundation for the mental toughness higher-level fencing requires.

9. It helps them learn that mistakes are not fatal. The best way to improve your fencing is by making a lot of mistakes. Camp provides a supportive, positive environment and encourages kids to persevere in the face of repeated failure. Remember: only one person ever wins a fencing tournament. There are, however, a myriad of ways to “win” at fencing that don’t require a gold medal hung around your neck. We’ll show the kids how to set achievable goals and how to measure their fencing success.     

10. It helps them learn to be independent. Fencers learn the responsibility of making their own decisions with the safety net of our coaches in a safe environment. They can risk finding out what works and what doesn’t, while discovering new actions they might really like. The camp environment provides peer support that allows fencers to overcome their need for constant coach or parent feedback. 

Ready for your fencer to have a great summer camp experience? Here’s where you can sign them up: http://cuttingedgefencing.com/summer_camps

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One thought on “Why should my child attend a summer camp?

  1. Our fencing kid has gone to at least one fencing camp every summer since starting fencing several years ago. I would highly recommend summer camps – if possible full day ones – to other parents. Coach Kate clearly states the reasons why summer camps are important – from the perspective of a parent, who now has an “experienced” fencer, I know that camps will benefit your fencer. How much it will benefit a fencer, is entirely up to that fencer – goof off, don’t listen, having a bad attitude will have less benefit. If your fencer is ready to work, listen, put effort into camp, have a good attitude, summer camp will pay off in spades – they (camps) certainly have for our fencing kid. If your fencer has any interest in going to tournaments this coming season in other parts of the state or out of state (NAC’s), camps are a MUST. Other fencers at these tournaments are attending their camps and working hard – you will meet them/fence them at these events – if you want to “hang with them” at tournaments, please attend the CEFC camp(s).

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