As a teacher or youth coach, sometimes you can have a group of excellent individual players but for some reason they don’t become a ‘team’. Other times you can watch players struggle to fulfil the potential you know they have. One of the best ways to tease the best out of individuals is to give them a chance to totally immerse themselves in their sport, away from the pressures of other commitments. This is where a school trip to a sports training facility can really make the difference.
On a sports residential, players can concentrate on the game and on each other, bonds are formed, and skills are honed. You’ll certainly notice the difference when you return from your school trip. There are a wide variety of sports trips available, so here are some examples of the kind of itineraries you could consider for your group.
Rugby in Toulouse
For many young rugby players, Toulouse is the capital of the French game, home to the legendary Stade Toulousain team who have won the Heineken Cup a staggering four times (not to mention the countless French championships they’ve won). What better place, therefore, for a school trip with your ruby team?
On a residential to Toulouse you could not only put your aspiring rugby players into intensive training sessions but enter them into games against other local youth groups in the area. Don’t forget to schedule in some down time for your players to relax and just get to know one another better.
Football in Milan
There aren’t many young footballers who don’t dream of visiting the home of two of Europe’s leading teams: Inter Milan and A.C. Milan. A residential to the City of Football could spark your footballers’ passion while also improving their skills. A trip like this is likely to contain a combination of training sessions as well as a chance to play against local teams, which is a great way to promote team spirit.
On any school trip it’s important that your students have a chance to spend some leisure time together, so make sure you make time for a bit of sightseeing. Perhaps, as a special treat, you could take your footballers for a tour of the legendary San Siro stadium.
Multi-sports on the Costa del Sol
For an all-round sports package, you might want to consider a multi-sports trip to somewhere like the Costa del Sol. No matter what sports your students are interested in, from basketball and swimming to football and tennis, you’ll find plenty of sports institutes and training facilities set up for school trips along the Costa.
Of course, it would be verging on cruel to bring your young athletes here and not give them some time to soak up the sun, so don’t forget to make time for relaxing on the beach or sightseeing around the local town.
Whatever the discipline of your team, a trip away is an excellent opportunity for the players to get to know one another a little better, as well as a chance to get to know their own strengths and weaknesses and to challenge themselves to become the players they want to be.
John Gardiner is the Managing Director of The School Travel Company, a tour operator specialising in school trip itineraries for school and youth groups to the UK, Europe and beyond. As a father and avid traveller, John is very passionate about providing students with valuable and engaging learning experiences outside of the classroom. By sharing his expert advice with teachers, he allows them to inspire their students and bring their studies to life.