There is a variety of different summer camps available this summer, but for children really passionate about soccer, there can be nothing more exhilarating than improving their soccer skills at the Montreal Impact Soccer School.

Nicolas Gaillard is the director at the Soccer School for the Montreal Impact and says they offer programs in the entire Greater Montreal Area, and these schools are open from mid-June to mid-August. They have a location at the ‘Bois-de-Boulogne’ Sports Complex in Laval and their North Shore location is in Mirabel. Gaillard notes that all camps are offered in both English and French and coaches and staff members are all bilingual.

Gaillard says this camp is unique and different from the other soccer camps available in Montreal due to its association with the Montreal Impact. “We have the fortune of being part of a professional soccer club, one that is based on values, soccer history and a philosophy that makes it so that the child is valued,” said Gaillard. “Our camps are centered on pleasure and personal development, not only in terms of being a soccer player but also in terms of developing a well-balanced individual, which is an important factor for us.” Gaillard added that this soccer school also has a professional structure that hires and trains coaches and staff according to the organization’s standards.

There are two types of soccer schools available to children: a recreational school and a development school. Parents can decide whether to send their children for a half-day or a full day. The recreational school is more of a soccer summer camp; it focuses on playing the actual sport and has partnerships with other soccer camps in order to organize soccer games. The development school is the real Montreal Impact Soccer School which allows students to really concentrate on and improve their competencies as soccer players. Gaillard described a typical day at the development school, saying that every morning the students do some technical training followed by a game to practice what they’ve learned. At noon, the students register for a half-day leave, and the students who remain play some soccer in the afternoon and end the day off with some miscellaneous activities in order to introduce some variety in the day.

For $195 per week for a half-day program or $315 per week for a full-day program, Gaillard says children attending the soccer school not only get taught by professionals, but they meet some players and also receive some promotional merchandise and get to attend some games. In past years, students have had the opportunity to meet big-name players like Marco di Vaio, Alessandro Nesta and Patrice Bernier.

The school attracted over 1,500 students from all over Quebec last summer, and is open to children aged 5 to 14 years old. Gaillard says that there is around a 6:4 boy/girl ratio and that students are grouped with other students of the same age, but if some students are more advanced then they will be placed with a more experienced group. Gaillard says it is common for students to attend for eight years in a row, and by doing so the school gets to observe the player’s entire development. Gaillard adds that in the case where a student plays at a superior level, he or she may be invited to the Impact Soccer Academy, where they are trained professionally by the Impact and may then obtain the opportunity play soccer professionally.

Gaillard and the Montreal Impact invite parents from all over the Greater Montreal Area to send their kids to their soccer schools and reiterates that there is really no better soccer school to train their students into complete soccer players and complete individuals.