Frequently Asked Questions

GENERAL QUESTIONS ABOUT THE CAMPS

Below are answers to some frequently asked questions about our camps.

Participating in a sports camp is a unique and very enriching experience. Apart from having a fantastic time, the camp programme is focussed around a particular sport where the participant will learn new skills or improve their technique. However, these programmes go far beyond simply taking part in sport. The young people learn to be more independent, they learn about decision making, discipline and sharing with others, working as a team and a lot of other important values besides. Many participants also take part in language study. Participants come from a wide range of countries and so the young people have the chance to make friends and practise their language skills with other boys and girls from many different cultures. In summary, taking part in a sports camp is an experience which benefits the young person in a much wider sense than simply improving their sporting skills and which will help them to mature and grow as people.

We have summer camps in football, tennis, golf, basketball and other activities for young people over 18 years of age. We also have some soccer academies for participants from 18 to 23 years which take place during the school year and which are run in conjunction with normal academic lessons.

We offer some football, tennis, golf and basketball academies that combine normal academic study with intensive sports training. These programmes are designed for children who want to develop their sporting skills to a high level. In some cases there is minimum skill level required to be able to participate (contact us for more information).

The vast majority of the camps take place during the months of June (late in the month), July and August, although we also have some camps available during the rest of the year (contact us for more information).

This depends on the camp. For example, if a Spanish speaking child attends a camp in Spain offering English classes, there is no minimum level of English required to be able to participate because all the staff speak Spanish and, with the exception of the English classes, all the sessions are run in their native language, thus there will be no problems of understanding either their campmates or staff at the camp.

If, on the other hand, a Spanish child attends a camp in England it is highly recommended that he/she has at least a basic knowledge of English in order to be able to get by day to day in the language. You need to take into account that attending a camp alone constitutes in itself a challenge for some young people. If on top of that they can’t communicate at all in the language, this will create an even greater barrier. They should have a minimum level of English in order to be able to communicate on a very basic level with their campmates, ask the monitors questions etc.

The camps we offer are open to all children, regardless of their level. On the first day, the children are divided into groups based on age. As they begin their coaching their skills are observed and if necessary, the groups will be adjusted to ensure the groups are as homogenous as possible. The young people taking part have a wide range of ability, from those who simply love the sport (football, tennis, golf or basketball) and enjoy it as a hobby to those talented children who have the potential to develop their skills to proficiency level.

Sports camps are usually held during the summer holidays (although there are also some in winter) and are open to young people from 8 to 21 years. These camps typically include a programme of sports coaching plus excursions, designed especially to enable the young people to have fun and learn something about the destination. In addition, a number of camps include language courses to make the camp experience even more fulfilling.

RESERVING A PLACE AT THE CAMP

Answers to questions about the camp reservations process.

To book a place at one of the camps we offer you should first complete the form you will find in the Register section. Once we receive your registration we will inform you whether there is a place available at your chosen camp. If there are places available we will send you information on how to pay the initial deposit which is necessary to make a definitive reservation.

The cost of airport transfer is almost never included in the price. You can find the price of airport transfers in the prices section of each camp.

No, air fare is NOT included in the basic price of the camp although for some camps and specific dates, for an additional fee, we offer round trip tickets from Madrid with a Spanish monitor.

The price generally includes training, full board accommodation, English/ Spanish courses and a number of activities and excursions. For a complete list of what is and what is not included in the camp please see the specific camp description.

This depends on both the availability and the conditions of each camp. In some cases they charge a fee for changing dates after a booking has been made.

Each camp has different cancellation conditions and you will be informed of these before reserving a place. However, no camp will refund the deposit once the final booking is made.

You can pay both the deposit and the balance via credit card. You can also pay via bank transfer.

The amount of the deposit needed to make the reservation differs depending on the camp. You can find out the exact cost of the deposit for a particular camp in the Prices and Dates section of each camp and this information will also be sent to you by email. Payment of the deposit is essential in order to reserve a place at a camp.

The balance should normally be paid no later than between 4 and 8 weeks before the start of the programme As a general rule it must be paid before 31 May. In order to reserve a place after this date, it will be necessary to pay the total cost of the programme.

The vast majority of camp places are filled up months before the start date but as there are often  cancellations or date changes you are advised to contact us to enquire about availability.

Each camp has a limited number of places and as the sports camps are so popular we advise you to book a place as soon as possible. Normally there is availability until the end of March / April but you may also be able to find a place later, although perhaps not in your first preference of camp or on the dates you wish. Contact us for more information.

TRANSPORTATION TO CAMP

Responding to questions on how to get to camp, pick-up service and support issues or transportation of children between the camp facilities.

If you hire the airport transfers service, a member of the camp staff will be there awaiting you at the airport arrivals lounge with a sign with the name of the camp. In some cases we pick up several participants at the same time but in others it will be an individual transfer.

Yes, you are welcome to take your child to the camp and pick them up again at the end (also if you wish you can choose  to take them only or to pick them up only and to contract the escorting service for the other leg of the journey). We can send you detailed directions to the camp.

Much depends on the experience and maturity of your child but we have had clients who have sent children as young as 10-11 to camp abroad unaccompanied.

It is recommended that your child has at least a basic level of English to communicate with for example the flight cabin crew or the airport employees even though in most cases there will be some staff who speak Spanish/English.

Please note also that certain airlines offer a minor accompanying service for children travelling without parents and, depending on the airline, it may be mandatory to book this service if your child is travelling alone. If you book this service with the airline, it is necessary for you to inform us so that we can in turn inform the camp. Please note also that the budget airlines do not normally offer this minor accompanying service.

Although you might have some concerns about sending your son or daughter alone on a flight abroad, you can rest assured that it is a practice that airlines are very accustomed to dealing with. As we mention above, airports have specialist staff who are responsible for taking care of children from the point of check in up to the point at which they board the flight and it works in a similar way in countries abroad.

If you have booked the airport transfers service overseas, the airport staff will take your child to the staff member responsible for the escorting service. Therefore your child will not be unaccompanied at any time other than during the flight itself.

 

RULES AND SECURITY

You can find information here about security at the camp, whether this relates to monitors, providing medical attention to a participant, going out of the camp and security standards of the camp.

Most young people use their mobile phones to contact their parents (camps usually have a Wi-Fi connection so they can get in touch free of charge).

If your child does not have a mobile phone, the camp will have a landline telephone which can be used, otherwise there are coin-operated public telephones. Young people will be able to call home during their free time.

You will be given a 24 hour emergency number which you can call if you need to contact your child in case of an emergency. We don’t recommend that parents make frequent calls to their children because this can disrupt their camp activities. Although as parents it is normal for us to worry about our children if they forget to call, in the vast majority of cases this simply means that they are having a wonderful time and are busy with other things.

 

Each camp has its own rules but below are some of the standards common to all camps:

- The use of tobacco, alcohol or drugs is strictly prohibited at all times (within or outside the camp). Violation of this rule usually means dismissal from camp following notification of the child’s parents.
- Participants must remain within the camp grounds and are not allowed to leave other than in the company of a monitor, unless they have been given permission by the staff in charge of the camp.
- During excursions participants must stay with the group all the time.
- Participants must adhere to the times for lights out at night and getting up in the mornings as well as arrive punctually for scheduled camp activities..
- The camp will not tolerate any form of discrimination or violence between the students. Participants must show respect for their campmates and their personal effects at all times.

If your child wears glasses it is advisable that you obtain specialised sports spectacles for them to wear during coaching activities – these are more flexible and resistant to breakages.

 

If your child needs a special diet or has a condition requiring particular care it is very important that you notify us in advance so that we can inform the camp. It is not normally a problem but we need to inform the camp about any special needs before we can confirm the booking.

Each camp has a team of monitors who oversee all activities that take place at the camp and there is also 24-hour surveillance. During the sports coaching or language classes the participants are under the supervision of the coaches and teachers respectively, which means there are adults supervising the young people on campus and during excursions outside at all times.

 

Normally there are about 10-15 students per monitor.

Almost all camps have staff trained in the treatment of minor ailments and injuries and who can issue medication. There are other staff who can practice physiotherapy and nursing care. However if your child needs prompt medical attention he will be taken to the nearest health centre or hospital and parents will be notified immediately. In contact sports it is quite common for children to sustain minor bumps and injuries but serious incidents are extremely rare.

 

THE CAMP

Below are some general questions about the camps, how they operate, equipment, parents’ visits and timetables.

In the section entitled ‘Programme and Activities’ for each camp you can find further detailed information about the typical schedule of the camp you are considering. Normally, coaching takes place during the mornings or the afternoons and the language classes in the remaining time. After dinner there is free time and a social programme until bed time. At weekends, the camp runs a range of excursions.

 

If your child is travelling with a companion, they may have the opportunity to share a room but it is usually the camp staff team who have the final decision on how the young people are placed. It is usual to accommodate participants based on mixing different nationalities, in order to promote diversity and encourage the participants to have an enriching social experience.

 

At the first lesson, students complete a short test to assess their language level. They are then placed in a class with other children of a similar level.

 

Camp participants are accommodated in residences.

Rooms may be individual or shared. In camps which are open to both male and female participants, boys and girls stay in separate parts of the residence.

The residences are usually accommodation blocks in nursing colleges or universities that are free during the holidays. For more information see the accommodation section of each camp.

Although the chosen sport constitutes the main focus of the camp, there are also other fun activities on offer, such as games evenings, excursions, making friends with young people from other countries, etc.

For more information on the type of activities on offer, please see the ‘Programme and Activities’ section of each camp.

Although most of the camps we offer are run in collaboration with the most renowned football teams in Europe, it is not usual for the players to visit the camps. It is therefore advisable not to raise your child’s hopes about this.

We don’t advise (nor is it necessary) that your child takes valuable belongings into the camp and the camps cannot be held responsible for loss or theft of personal items. Nevertheless, all camps have a place where your child can store their money, passport and other valuables for safekeeping. On arrival at the camp, your son/daughter should ask the monitors about this.

 

In most camps everything is included in the price including the cost of excursions and entrance fees. However, it is advisable to take some money to buy international calling cards, souvenirs and snacks during outings or at the camp. 50-100 € per week should be sufficient.

Below we have provided a list of the most important things that participants should bring to camp. We recommend that you attach some form of identification label to each article of clothing to prevent items being mixed up with those of other participants:

- Sports equipment (as the camp start day approaches you will receive notification about the most important items to pack)

- Enough clothes for a week’s stay (there are laundry facilities in the camps although in some cases there is a charge for this).

- Swimwear and towels

- Walking shoes and sandals

- Rain gear

- Toiletries

- Sun protection cream

- Cap

- Insect repellent

The majority of the camps do not permit visits by parents. It is important to consider that your child will probably need a few days to settle into the life of the camp. Once he or she has got used to being away from home and from their parents and family etc, a visit risks causing a setback to the settling in process and mean they may not get the best out of their camp experience.

Camps typically accommodate about 100 students but there are also larger camps which, apart from the sports coaching, offer other activities for participants to enjoy (such as multi sports facilities, dance, adventure camp, videogames design to name but a few).

Participants are grouped by age and ability. Normally there is one coach for every 10-20 students. Initially the children are placed in groups according to their age. After a few days once the coaches  have had the chance to observe the skill level, they may make some adjustments to the groups if necessary in order to ensure the young people are training with others of similar skills.