Looking for a local summer sports camp for your child that is fun, has built-in Covid safety protocols, and leads to a mastery of a “lifetime sport”? Then consider the Pickleball Kids USA Summer Racquets Camp at Franklin Road Academy this summer. Offering a full range of racquet sports–tennis in the mornings and pickleball and ping pong in the afternoons–parents can choose from six weekly camps, beginning June 6.
Momentum for all racquet sport participation has emerged as one of the preferred mental health and recreational outlets for children—primarily due to built-in social distancing, and, of course, the pure joy of playing. Tennis, pickleball, and ping pong have seen a dramatic rise in youth participation, fueled by the pandemic, with pickleball emerging as the fastest growing junior sport in America. Tennis and ping pong have also grown exponentially with record numbers of young athletes looking to get involved in competitive play and developing skills that will contribute to a lifetime of physical activity and enjoyment.
“Nearly two hundred children improved their tennis skills and also learned to play pickleball at last year’s camp,” according to Randall Bedwell, FRA Summer Racquets Camp director and owner of Pickleball Kids USA, which sponsors local tournaments and clinics and is even fielding a team for the AAU Junior Olympics in the fall. “We are building on our success from last year’s camp by hiring additional staff, adding an advanced tennis option, and offering ping pong with our afternoon pickleball camp as another way to get young children to fall in love with racquet sports at an early age.”
Bedwell describes pickleball as a mix of tennis, badminton, and ping-pong and an excellent way to introduce a child to competitive sports. As former Summer Tennis Camp Director at Maryland Farms YMCA and current Boy’s Tennis Coach at FRA, he has been responsible for introducing hundreds of young children to tennis and sees pickleball as the best sport to start a child toward a lifetime of physical activity and athletics.
Each weekly camp covers the entire spectrum of tennis and/or pickleball development, from detailed instruction to supervised play. Sound strokes, proper movement, and play strategies are covered in a logical progression of instruction and drill. The camps are geared to all levels of play, from the novice looking for basic instruction to the experienced tournament players wanting to sharpen their skills.
This year’s camp theme, “Let Love Serve,” teaches students the rudiments of sportsmanship through a variety of character-building and conflict resolution activities that can be used both on and off the court.
Camps are divided into morning and/or afternoon sessions with lunch provided for those who register for the whole day. The first session starts June 6. A child does not have to be an FRA student to attend. For more information, visit: https://pickleballkidsusa.org/fra-summer-camp/
To register, visit https://www.franklinroadacademy.com/summer-camp/sports-camps