Friday, June 19, 2015

Raising The Bar


We just completed basketball camp! This story is about one of my favorite camp memories ever. It involved my camp team for a week and coincidentally, two of those same girls (Kylie and Ruby) ended up playing on my junior high team. The following is from June 24, 2006.

It's over. The seventy-five hours we call basketball camp have come and gone at Westbury Christian School. The gym was sweltering but the three weeks flew. Part of me endures camp: like anything done repeatedly, the newness falls by the wayside. I have a running joke with Amber Glenn, our director's daughter who really is the de facto director, and Coach Reed Sutton about the percentage of camp elapsed: 11 %, 32%, etc. Did you know that every forty-five minutes of camp represents 1% of the total time? I have time management down to a science! The truth is, though, that I really love camp. We get attached to kids, many of whom we only see in June. The morning sessions are laid back while the afternoons are more intense. The difference is the age of the campers- the older groups come after lunch. With the younger kids, we concentrate on learning and having fun concurrently.

My morning team this week might have been the best I've been blessed to work with in my forty sessions of camp at WCS. Teams were assigned names from the Southeastern Conference. We were deemed the COMMODORES as in the Vanderbilt Commodores. It was comprised of only five young ladies, ranging in age from seven to ten. Four of the five have been to camp repeatedly and the fifth is the daughter of a coach. As I mentioned, the focus with the younger campers is more enjoyment and loudness as an outlet for group spirit is encouraged. Squads compete for TEAM OF THE WEEK honors by being cooperative, responsive, and innovative, and did I mention, LOUD? The kids come up with chants to impress camp director Greg Glenn as he walks by lines formed for fundamentals, footwork, the shooting progression, etc. We noticed that if you lined our five girls in height order, we looked just like those television ads for Cingular Wireless that play every five minutes during prime time. You know, the five stairsteps that have something to do with cell phone reception. The COMMODORES commandeered the Cingular slogan, "Raise The Bar" for our chants and added an arm motion to the right at a 45 degree angle for choreographic emphasis. They were incredibly enthusiastic and supportive of each other. Plus, they are good players for that age and have fundamental skills that many older kids could emulate. In the end, it all worked. Greg announced that, after tallying the points, the judges had awarded TEAM OF THE WEEK accolades to the COMMODORES. As a reward for their excellence, each girl and their lucky coach were presented with a dark blue, clear plastic Westbury Christian basketball water bottle, complete with graduated measurements on the side AND a clip you can use to attach to your belt. Alysse, Jeanette, Kylie, Ruby, and Wadad were ecstatic. So was I. It was only a little basketball camp but five girls showed what you can do if you expect great things of yourself and those in your company. I make no bones about the fact that I believe adults have destroyed the fun of sports for many kids in our country. But, by giving individual attention to all the youngsters AND teaching about a wonderful game in a way that reinforced the enjoyment aspect, we repaired a little damage these past three weeks.


 
Applicable quote of the day:
"Start early and begin raising the bar throughout the day."
Bruce Jenner

God bless,
Steve (Coach of the COMMODORES, Session 5, WCS All-Star Basketball Camp)
Luke 18:1
http://www.hawleybooks.com/
E-mail me at steve@hawleybooks.com

1 comment:

Jon said...

The Gators Chomp was so much better... hahaha