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Golden State Lacrosse Camp: Eric Martin

April 1, 2010

From time to time, I conduct interviews of camp directors to get their advice for parents. Last week, I spoke with Eric Martin from Golden State Lacrosse.  Golden State Lacrosse offers lacrosse camps throughout the Bay Area and in Squaw Valley. We have quite a few lacrosse camps at Sign Up For Camp, so I was very interested in learning more about ensuring a good experience at lacrosse camp.

With so many camps out there, do you have any tips for parents on how to find the right one?

Look at who is running the camp, and how the camp is operated. What do you want from the camp?

At Golden State Lacrosse, we are two guys who are very accomplished in the sport and love the sport. We want the kids to have fun – first and foremost. And we want them to learn as much as they want to learn.

What questions should parents ask a before signing up, particularly a lacrosse camp?

  • Skill level is the big question. Is the camp at the right level for your child? And if you get it wrong and your child ends up in the wrong camp, can you get a refund?
  • Understand what is required equipment-wise. Be sure to ask whether the play will be on grass or sports turf, because that will impact the shoes your child should bring.
  • Who are the counselors/instructors in the camp, and what are their backgrounds?

How should a parent prepare their child for camp?

  • Make sure your child spends some time with a stick in his hand in the weeks prior to attending camp, so that they are comfortable and ready to dive into camp.
  • Have your child eat breakfast before camp so they have plenty of energy.
  • Send your child to camp with their own water bottle. Of course, water is always supplied, but it’s helpful for your child to have their own bottle.

Any other tips to ensure a great experience for your child at lacrosse camp?

If your child is new to the sport, try to have him attend camp with a friend, so that he is comfortable.

In general, we recommend that a camper has spent at least one season playing lacrosse, to get the most enjoyment out of attending a camp. Your child should be comfortable with a stick before attending camp.

And lastly, make sure that the camp is the right skill level for your child.

What makes Golden State Lacrosse Special?

We are former National Champion players and we love the sport. Our general motto is “Learn from the best. Have fun playing lacrosse.”

Because of our deep competitive experience in college and the pros, we are deeply rooted in the local lacrosse community. We play with the best lacrosse players in the United States, and we’re able to bring these players into the camp. We really know and understand the local lacrosse scene, and we’re able to help families navigate the sport.

We are strong believers in demonstrating rather than telling, and we are big on drills. Our typical methodology is to provide a live demo, and hold the kids attention for 5 minutes. Show them the point we are making, and then run immediately into a fun drill.  We believe that it’s more effective to see the information than hear it.

Anything else you’d like to share with parents?

If you’re thinking about lacrosse as a sport, you should know that it’s a great sport. It’s the fastest growing sport on the West Coast, but still small. It’s a very tight-knit group of players. There are a lot of really good people involved, and involvement in the sport can open the door in surprising ways. It’s a sport that gives back. It’s a really cool sport in that way.

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