February 26, 2007
Greetings to all Rochester Rhinos fans from Greece…Greece, NY.
This off-season I decided to stay put here in Rochester and conduct my “Train like a Champion” Goalkeeper/Striker Camps along with Matthew Delicâte and spend quality time with my family. This is the first year we’ve done these camps and they were so successful we branched outside of the Rochester area into Buffalo and Syracuse. They keep us busy as we conduct about 2 camps per month and try to provide young soccer players with an opportunity to learn from professionals. Our program is unique in that we open it to only around 15 goalkeepers and 15 strikers. This way we can offer a lot of one-on-one attention/instruction and the kids and their parents really appreciate that.
Along with the camps, I have a goalkeeper academy at TSE that attracted 30 kids (two groups of 15) and they are having a blast and learning a lot too. The academy is for 8 weeks and we have completed 6 so far. I also conduct private lessons about 3 times per week in the afternoons on a first come, first served basis. In addition, we practice every Wednesday at TSE from 3-5 as part of the new youth development program that the Rhinos are introducing this year with about 25 elite high school and college players. Finally, every Tuesday and Thursday mornings, Deli and I train with personal strength and conditioning trainer Phil Steckley at Advantage Sports Performance. We work on speed and agility as well as core strength, stability and balance.
Deli and I top everything off by volunteering for the Quad-A for Kids program downtown Rochester on a weekly basis teaching soccer to first and second graders. So as you can see, I’ve been pretty busy this winter. I get a chance to offer what I have learned over my 9-year professional career to the kids of the Rochester area. It makes me feel good and keeps me fit as a byproduct. When I’m not doing soccer related things (training, playing or doing appearances for the Club), I have been a stay at home Dad. My son Brayden and I hang out all day until my wife gets home from work. His latest trick is counting.
Not lost in all of the off-season “Train like a Champion” Camps is the fact that I am a professional soccer player first and foremost. Everything I do is in preparation for the upcoming 2007 season. When I teach kids about proper goalkeeper technique it makes me reflect on my own technique and fine tune it. When you throw in the weekly soccer practice and the strength and conditioning program, I feel like I really am ready for the season to kick off, both physically and more important mentally. I think our entire club gathered a lot of experience last season by getting all the way to the final and I think that will translate into better productivity on the field for us this season. This off-season has been long, but I’m eagerly looking forward to seeing all the fans again packing PAETEC Park in 2007! Cheers! ~Scott