New for 2024 – Berkshire Soccer Academy Mini Camp

Friday August 9 – Sunday August 11, 2024

 

This 3-day session is open to Rising 4th-8th graders who are new to the Academy. Girls of all abilities who are passionate about soccer, and excited to train for 4 hours/day are welcome. Campers will develop as whole players on and off the field, build meaningful relationships and have good ol’ fun!

Session Overview:

Arrival- Friday, August 9 – 9:00 AM

Departure- Sunday, August 11 – 3:00 PM

The Mini-Camp Session includes:

  • Five 90-minute soccer training sessions.
  • Five 1-hour elective periods – choose from waterfront, arts & crafts, archery, cooking and more.
  • Opening night evening-activity and campfire.
  • Saturday night tourney under the lights.
  • Delicious and nutritious food.
  • Comfortable, air-conditioned housing.

Session Price: $1295

Mini Camp FAQ's

Where is the Berkshire Soccer Academy for Girls?
The Academy is located at the Berkshire Sports Academy’s state-of-the-art athletic facility in the quaint New England town of East Otis, Massachusetts, just ten miles north of the Connecticut border and approximately 2 hours by car from Boston and 2.5 hours from New York City. It sits on a wooded hillside along the shores of its own private lake.

How does my child get to the Academy?

Most families drive or carpool. We do not provide transportation to or from our camp sessions. We do provide ground transportation for campers flying into Bradley International Airport (BDL) in Windsor Locks, CT.

What are the athletic and program facilities like?
The newly-renovated facilities provide athletes with an elite training experience as well as exposure to a wide variety of fun activities.

ATHLETIC FACILITIES:

  • 1 Grass Field (300′ x 200′) – full size soccer field which can be divided into 3 smaller fields
  • 1 Grass Field (250′ x 150′) – with soccer goals, lit for night play
  • 1 Artificial Turf Soccer Field (200′ x 110′) – with small-sided goals, lit for night play
  • 1 Covered Artificial Turf Field (195′ x 110′)
  • Turfed Court with Training Wall – Court is 96’ x 48’.  Wall is 48” wide and 16’ high
  • Strength & Conditioning Room – with equipment designed specifically for girls
  • Pavilion – centrally located to the fields. Houses our Athletic Training Room & Soccer Coordinator’s office
  • Clubhouse – a covered open-air building where athletes store their soccer gear

CAMP FACILITIES:

  • Larkum Lake –  a private, spring-fed 20-acre lake with docks, canoes, stand-up paddleboards,a fishing dock, a fleet of kayaks and a water park filled with inflatables including a Blob and Quarter Pipe by Wibit.
  • Rec Deck – a 4,000 square foot deck at the center of camp, outfitted with a Gaga pit, Teqball, a basketball hoop, carpet ball,  and other fun games. The adjacent Chill Zone includes seating areas and tables for reading, relaxing and playing games.
  • Lakeside Lounge – a large, air-conditioned indoor space for campers to relax and refresh.
  • Hiking Trails –a one-mile trail wraps around the lake and connects to a nearby waterfall
  • Playhouse – a vintage building with stage and lights for performances and camp events
  • Arts & Crafts Studio – a large building dedicated to creative projects like tie-dye, wood-working, drawing and bracelet-making

Our Facilities - Program Facilities

What does the Academy do to make girls feel welcome?
Our “Away from Home Guide” and “Athlete Handbook” help athletes prepare for camp, and eases transition and separation issues. In early June, before the beginning of the camp session, we invite newly enrolled and prospective families to visit and tour camp, meet staff and ask questions.

Upon arriving at camp for their session, campers play fun ice-breaker games, meet cabin-mates, cabin counselors and residential life leaders, and get settled into their cabins. The first day’s action-packed schedule, which includes a fun scrimmage, an all-camp evening activity and the opening campfire, adds to the warm welcome.

We understand that homesickness is natural and often occurs with both new and veteran campers. We prepare and train our staff to handle homesickness and have had great success helping many athletes navigate and overcome this feeling and enjoy a fantastic Berky experience.

Does the Academy use a unique soccer-specific training program?
Yes! Unlike any other soccer camp, the Academy takes an innovative approach to coaching young athletes by providing consistent and individualized instruction that focuses on training the whole player. Athletes are grouped by age and skill-level into training groups of 25 – 30 girls. These teams train daily with coaches who ensure that each player is improving and having fun. Most importantly, girls relax, try new things, and build their confidence off the field. The relaxed atmosphere and added confidence make it far easier for them to stretch and take risks on the field, and their improvement generally exceeds all expectations.

What does “training the whole player” mean?
We prepare our athletes to be well-rounded and fully capable soccer players and girls. This includes mental skills training that is intentionally woven through the Academy experience.

Do goalkeepers receive specific training at the Academy?
Yes! The Academy offers a Goalkeeping Track. Athletes interested in goalkeeping sessions should so indicate on their Camper Application. Goalkeepers are pulled 3-4 times/week by our goalkeeping coach who provides 45 minutes to 1 hour of daily specialized goalkeeping instruction. During the rest of the sessions, goalkeepers are integrated with the field players in order to develop necessary foot skills and field awareness. As outlined below, goalkeepers can supplement their training with private goalkeeper instruction.

Are there extra opportunities for Individual Training?

There will be no private training available during our Mini Camp Session.

Do you provide soccer-specific feedback on individual athletes?

All players receive individualized feedback at the end of their session.  The Head Coach from each athlete’s training group completes an assessment of that athlete’s strengths, areas in which she most improved, and opportunities for improvement. The assessment is e-mailed to parents within a few days of the session’s completion.

What is the Academy’s daily schedule?
While every day at the Berkshire Soccer Academy is unique and full of surprises, the days do follow a common structure. On a typical day, girls participate in two soccer-specific periods, two elective periods, and one evening activity. We bring variety to each session with special programming that includes surprise events and guest appearances.

What happens if it rains?
Soccer sessions and most other activities carry on outside in light rain. On rainy days, athletes move to an indoor training schedule, and athletes participate in rainy-day electives. Training continues on the covered turf field

What happens if there is a heat wave?
In the event of severe heat, we alter the schedule as appropriate, moving training sessions to early morning and evening and adding an extra swim session. Misters at the soccer fields provide quick cooling. All camper cabins are air-conditioned, and our dining hall and recreation hall are cooled by high-capacity fans.