First stop: Soccer camps in NYC. Next stop: the World Cup! Your lineup of summer activities for kids would be incomplete without a few scrimmages, so explore our favorite summer sports camp programs and book your little athletes for a session or two.
From West Side Soccer Camps to Super Kickers Sports, the best summer soccer camps will provide kids with the fundamentals needed to perfect their moves on the field, plus they will expose pint-sized players to a whole new group of friends.
RECOMMENDED: Full guide to summer camps in NYC
Best soccer camps for kids
Sharpen those skills on the field thanks to Chelsea Piers' Elite Soccer Camp. The go-to sports facility provides kids a place to spend the dog days of summer while uncovering ways to make their games stronger, from strength training and core stabilization, to focus on dribbling and shooting. Campers will even sit in on lectures with the pros. Then, pint-sized athletes have to put their skills to the test small games and full-field scrimmages. Ages 9–14.
Kids can practice in the home of the Columbia Lions while sharpening their soccer skills, learning about the game on a professional level and bonding with teammates along the way. The West Side Soccer League and New York Red Bull's camp is a great way to advance on the field. Ages 7–14.
Kids of all skill levels get their kicks in these specialized soccer camps that aim to improve motor skills and facilitate teamwork on the field. Little ones learn to dribble in a noncompetitive atmosphere and embrace their creative sides in Mini Camps (ages 2.5–5) that combine soccer and art classes. Fun in the Sun camps (ages 3–5) get youngsters acquainted with the sport through outdoor drills and scrimmages, while Junior Kick It sessions (ages 3–5) lets campers build their skills inside. Older kids will want to get in on the Kick It camps (ages 6–10), where they practice with professional coaches and go for the goal during daily, 55-minute World Cup games. Ages 2.5–10.
Players big and small will be exposed to technical training, competitive game situations and will be trained by college, ODP, club and high school coaches (even former Columbia University soccer players) with this cool program. Ages 6–18.
Join in with Super kickers for a wide range of summer fun the kids will love. Littles will try sports like soccer, basketball and jiujitsu, perfect their downward dog at yoga, burn off energy on a bouncy house or trampoline and get artsy with LEGO workshops, ceramics, drawing, jewelry-making and painting. Ages 4–12.
Even the youngest tykes in your brood are in need of a summer activity. Why not let them run wild at Kids in Sports Summer Camp? The program not only exposes little ones to the fundamentals of a new game, but it helps them practice a healthy lifestyle, feel confident and feel passionate about different sports. Each offering is divided by age group and held throughout different locations in NYC—Temple Israel, Randalls Island and KIS-74th St. Indoor Camp (ages 2.5–6) is a combination of games such as floor hockey, soccer and basketball, to name a few, as is Outdoor Camp (ages 4–8) which offers volleyball, baseball and soccer. Pre-school Camp (ages 2–3.5) is an introduction to sports for tiny tots and also combines other activities such as story time and craft projects. Learn more about each offering here. Ages 2.5–8.
Your ball of energy can choose between a swim, sports or arts camp with expert instructors. Swimmers can tucker themselves out with endless pool time, young athletes will be in their element as they play basketball, baseball, tennis and other team sports and creatives can express themselves in many media, including the circus arts and film. Each program includes exciting weekly field trips that’ll appeal to all, such as a Mets game or rock climbing at the Cliffs in Queens. Ages 4.5–13.
Your busy bee will buzz all day long during these five fun activity blocks: sports, outdoor games, arts-and-crafts, STEM sessions and movement (think Zumba and yoga). Plus, campers in first grade or higher get one day a week of open swim time if they pass a swim test. The program includes field trips and themed weeks. Ages 3.5–13.
Young athletes have the option to spend their summer perfecting their games at Columbia University's Youth Sports Camp, which offers many different areas of interest: baseball, basketball, soccer, rowing, field hockey, golf, lacrosse and so much more. Learn more about the offerings here. Ages 6–18.
This Bayside camp is all about sports and friendly competition! Kids do fun drills to improve basic techniques, then compe in intramural games among their peers. All participants get a taste of basketball, baseball, soccer, kickball and football. The program also includes swimming and field trips to destinations such as Madame Tussauds and Yankee Stadium. Ages 4–15.
Tiny New Yorkers can enjoy their city to the fullest during an NYC Parks summer camp, which boasts STEAM projects, outdoor activities and sports—hosted by the City Parks Foundation—as well as trips to some of our city’s shining cultural and educational institutions. Last year’s campers visited Central Park Zoo’s super-cute sea lions and kayaked the city’s waterways with the Urban
Park Rangers. Lottery registration opens on March 1, 2019. Learn more here.