“Few men on this planet have spent more time at a basketball camp than I have, after running no less than 100 camps on 3 continents in the past 20 years. So I come with an earned set of standards that I hold to any camp I associate myself with, standards that are set impossibly high, as I have featured NBA Hall of Fame coaches at my camps, along with superstar players and brilliant basketball minds from around the world. But I did my homework before agreeing to send my one and only son to “Step It Up” last summer, his first true overnight camp to attend. It is fair to say that the experience topped the goals I had hoped to achieve for him, and more importantly, my 14 year old son had the best summer of his life.
The passion for details, the closeness between players and staff, the hours of basketball playing, and the rigorous efforts the staff makes to know the intimate “goings-on” between every camper is what truly sets the experience apart from the other camps existing today.
I witnessed superior teaching on the court, outstanding lectures in a structured setting, and creative and constructive staff meetings (at midnight!!) that enabled every camper to best enjoy his camp experience. It’s no accident that the kids get better day to day, nor is it a surprise that they are smiling and laughing while working so hard.
This is a well run business, solely focused on the end-user experience, disguised as a basketball camp in a gorgeous setting.
Here is my favorite anecdote from my son’s time at camp, and it comes a few months after camp ended. My son was invited by friends to go away for a long weekend to a beachside resort on the Atlantic Ocean, about a 4 hour drive across the state from our home near the Gulf of Mexico in Florida. It can get chillier on that side of the state in October, though it can also be just as hot and humid there as it is where we live. My son came home and handed his dirty laundry to his mom as he told me about the weekend, when she noticed there were a few sweatshirts in the laundry pile. She asked him why he packed sweatshirts for a beach trip, and her 14 year old son simply said “I looked up the weather before I packed and saw that it was going to get cold there at night”. She looked to me and said, “that’s Step It Up camp right there-it taught him how to think for himself”.
Now, he loved the camp, he is in touch still with so many of his friends from that month in New Hampshire, and he came home more confident and driven to be a great player than ever before. A drive he still holds, almost a year later. But we are all looking for help to raise independent, bright, loving, and caring young men. And the fact that Yogev and his staff added some maturity to my beautiful boy, while exposing him to quality young men from so many varying backgrounds, is something that I will be grateful for as long as I’m alive.”
Posted on May 15, 2020