World Soccer Star Megan Rapinoe On Youth Soccer Today
2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup champion Megan Rapinoe visited San Diego to teach pro-level soccer drills and talk about the big wins on the field.
Soccer News: A special Megan Rapinoe Youth Soccer Camp with the Del Mar Carmel Valley Sharks Soccer Club was held in October and was a huge success. With more players wanting to attend the event than allowed, the Megan Rapinoe Soccer Camp was an excellent example of a top notch super star soccer player giving back to the beautiful game.
Megan Rapinoe is a California born professional soccer midfielder who plays for the United States Women’s National Soccer team and for Seattle Reign FC in the National Women’s Soccer League. As a member of our country’s national team, Rapinoe helped the U.S. win the gold at the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup. First gaining national recognition for her left-footed cross to Abby Wambach for the all important goal which tied the match against Brazil in the dying seconds of overtime of the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup quarterfinal, Rapinoe has consistently impressed fans and experts alike.
A former US Youth Soccer National Champion, Rapinoe grew up in Redding, California, playing soccer — among other sports. She has five siblings, including a fraternal twin, Rachael. Rapinoe’s philosophy on soccer is simple – it is all about doing your best.
Rapinoe is the consumate professional soccer player who wants to give back to the game she loves dearly. This midfielder plays an intense game of soccer and delivers a pivotal punch when on the field.
As a talented player who knows the game of soccer with great intensity, Rapinoe shares her soccer skills and knowledge through a series of Performance Training Clinics run by her foundation. The clinic held with the Del Mar Carmel Valley Sharks in San Diego was a fabulous success.
“Our mission: be your best you. We teach the beautiful game of soccer through the passionate lens of Rapinoe soccer, however our vision is to enable people of all ages to be the best they can be. We want to engage and connect, while helping people reach their full potential. We expect our campers to work hard, but more importantly we want everyone to have fun.”
While today Rapinoe is clearly one of the best goal scorers, her early years as an aspiring pro were impacted by knee injuries. Realizing the importance of proper training and the value of working hard to prevent injury, Rapinoe selected to work with SKLZ as a sponsor to help share her knowledge of the game. SKLZ offers skill and performance training products and programs for athletes all across the USA.
Rapinoe was easy to talk to and comfortable in front of the TV Cameras but eager to start connecting with and training the youth soccer players who had come from all over the San Diego area to participate in this unique soccer training event.
Before starting the training, Rapinoe was happy to pose for a few pictures with her idol of her youth days, Shannon MacMillan and answer a few questions:
Diane Scavuzzo: What advice would you give to a young soccer player who wants to grow up and play in the World Cup?
Megan Rapinoe: You have to love soccer, and if you really love soccer – then all the practice and training is easier. Coming to practice and training is not work if you love soccer.
Diane Scavuzzo: How did it feel to win the World Cup?
Megan Rapinoe: It was amazing. Everyone asks that question but it was an incredible experience.
Diane Scavuzzo: What is the idea behind the clinic?
Megan Rapinoe: My sister Rachael and I have held a few camps around the country. Giving back to the soccer community is important to me and I want to help youth soccer players reach their potential.
This is more of a sports performance and technical training. There is so much that goes into soccer now a days – Today’s youth players have a real advantage with all the training that is available– there is a lot more than when I was young.
Diane Scavuzzo: What do you think about the state of youth soccer today? And is it very different than when you were playing as a youth?
Megan Rapinoe: Youth soccer has become insane. It is so incredibly competitive, even at a very young age.
I played multiple sports when I was young and loved it but now a days, youth soccer players are asked to focus on just one sport when they are so young. I don’t agree with it. I played other sports all the way through high school.
Diane Scavuzzo: Whats your goal for the Megan Rapinoe Performance Clinic?
Megan Rapinoe: I want to help players become better technically. Players need to have a strong technical foundation if they want to play at the elite level. Being technically strong is very important.
Diane Scavuzzo: How many girls have come out to attend the Megan Rapinoe Performance Clinic?
Megan Rapinoe: The entire clinic was organized by the Sharks here in San Diego – Mac (Shannon MacMillan) – I call her Mac, did an outstanding job. We wanted 150 girls to attend and the clinic sold out almost immediately.
Diane Scavuzzo: Yes, I am told there is a big waiting list with more than 100 girls wanting to attend. That is terrific. Did you attend any technical soccer clinics like this when you were a youth player?
Megan Rapinoe: Not really – I would have loved to.
Diane Scavuzzo: How does SKLZ fit in?
Megan Rapinoe: SKLZ is great and I really like working with them. Performance requires training and SKLZ helps players. Proper training and warm up is so important.
For more info on Megan Rapinoe, check out her website: http://meganrapinoe.com