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The 5 Benefits of Peak Performance Sports Academies

04/17/2015, 5:00am PDT
By Kelvin Cech

Learn how to barge through the 2:30pm wall.


The clock says it’s 2:28 in the afternoon on a Tuesday. You know exactly how many seconds will pass before the second to last bell of the day will ring, signalling the time to head back to homeroom physics. 

Physics. You know you’d probably be good at physics if either you could keep your eyes open at this point in the day or you could sit still long enough to listen to what the teacher was saying.

Why do you have to do private lessons on Tuesday mornings? That seems like a dumb idea now. 

This line of thinking happens more often than parents care to think. We believe that our children want to go to hockey at all hours of the day because they’re investing in their careers. Well, when 2:30 hits you at the office, don’t you wish you had gone to bed earlier instead of staying up to watch Grey’s Anatomy?

Let’s look at a typical sports academy; it can be hockey, tennis, lacrosse or any sport that requires a great deal of extra training.

  • Core subjects in the morning
  • Electives mixed in (in high school)
  • Sport-specific training in the afternoon
  • Homework after school
  • Evenings free for practice, games or doing absolutely nothing

Sport places a gigantic demand on the physical and emotional states of our children. Peak Performance academies can go a long way toward easing that burden. 

1. The Natural Distribution of Energy

When that 2:30 wall hits, athletes involved in sports academies are on the ice, on the field or in the gym. There’s no room for fatigue. Their pent-up energy accrued during a morning of studying is released. Training every afternoon also makes it easier to relax and do homework after school if necessary. 

2. The Assisted Acquisition of Discipline

A common myth of hockey academies (and a reality at some) is that once the lunch bell rings it’s a free-for-all. The best sports academies are run like a university - afternoon training is treated like a class. Student-athletes are expected to be punctual, hit achievements and finish assignments just like any other class. 

3. The Added Concentration on Skill Development

The biggest benefit: working on game-specific skills during the day that you otherwise wouldn’t have time to work on at night. Afternoon sports academies are all about building habits. Shooting a hundred pucks ever day, serving a thousand balls, building stamina; skill development learned during the day is taught in a steady progression of simple steps. 

4. The Increased Pressure on Academics

Spending more time on the ice or on the court means less time spent in the classroom. This means that in order to maintain grades, the student must focus when he or she is in the classroom. If schoolwork falls behind, it’s up to the student (at the behest of the student’s support group of teachers, coaches and parents) to put in the work after school.  

5. The Built-In Lessons of Time Management

Different areas of life require different types of energy. Attending a sport-specific skills academy highlights this for student-athletes every day. Fatigue or a lack of motivation doesn’t fly, it’s a student’s responsibility to complete their daily routine to the best of their abilities. This is the way the real world works, and, increasingly, this is how sports at an elite level work. 

Peak Performance Programs aren’t for everybody. They’re only for anybody who wants to improve their skills in an academic environment amongst athletes of similar age and ability. The academy lifestyle is unique and challenging, an achievement both for the mind and the body on a daily basis. 


Want to learn more about the Peak Performance Hockey Program at NSWC? Email Clint Thornton today. 


photo credit: Time machine ! via photopin (license)

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