Summer camp teaches kids to act like champs
by Josh Brewer
Jun 26, 2013 | 1457 views | 0 0 comments | 33 33 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Champion U is a summer camp focused on sport readiness, motivation, and visualization. The camp, which takes place at ElmCor in Elmhurst teaches kids between the ages of five and 15 how to become a champion, both academically and in sports.

“Sports readiness is a system of drills, games, and instruction that prepares the men and women for the world of competitive sports,” said sports director Michael Cigala.

Ciagala, who was a member of the 1987 Soviet Union wrestling team, focuses on the kinesthetic approach of sports. “There are no sports without movement. If you don’t break down the movement, how do you improve?” he asked.

Motions like breaking down and standing up, lateral movement, backwards and sideways movement without breaking stride, and even peripheral vision are key to playing sports.

The camp starts with physical training and stretching. Participants receive instructions on the rules, regulations, and strategies of the sports they play. At the end of the week, there will be a tournament for the sport learned that week.

“We treat them like athletes,” Cigala said. “We’re looking to bring out the champion in every kid.”

The program also teaches kids visualization and “being in the zone” by involving sports imagery and zone kinetics.

“We teach kids that you have to see it in in your mind first before you can go and get it,” Cigala said. “If you want to become it, you have to think about it, you have to act like it, and you have to make like you’re there first and then you become it.”

In between all the play, the kids apply the same concepts in the classroom. For example, if a student sees themselves passing a test and doing the work, then that student will pass the test. The camp spends time using zone kinetics to help the students in school as well. It instills confidence in the students work and motivates them

The eight-week camp will teach children a different sport every week and run from July 1 to Aug. 26 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Participants will receive breakfast and lunch each day. The cost is $350 per month.

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