Page 1

Here comes Niagara Falls Soccer Club 2016 House League Kicks Off

Looking for the right camp this spring/summer? River Lions roar into the playoffs!




Fencing: one sport – a sport for all! Fencing is the modern sport of sword fighting. It combines passion, coordination, agility, endurance, and speed with technical skill and mental focus. You face off against your opponent one-on-one duelling for points, all completely safe behind the mask. Often referred to as physical chess, fencing is one of the original-five sports of the current modern-day Olympics. In Canada, fencing has been experiencing immense growth with over 2,000 fencers throughout Ontario alone. In Niagara, the Niagara Swords Fencing Club (NSFC) has been using the sport of modern fencing to engage the Niagara community in healthy active lifestyle for over 30 years. With nationally and internationally certified coaches, NSFC has become a national leader in providing programs and services. The club has grown from a handful of members to over 70. If you are looking to channel your inner knight, musketeer or Jedi, the Niagara Swords has introductory programs for all ages, including children as young as 7 to adults of any age — no experience is needed and all equipment is provided! All programs are designed to be fun while keeping the Canadian Sport for Life (CS4L) model in

MAY/JUNE 2016 Niagara Region Edition


mind and include age-appropriate activities and equipment.


Classes teach basic fencing behaviour, sportsmanship, and self-discipline, as well as the basic terminology, footwork, offensive and defensive actions, and bouting strategy with actual fencing. While there are many, some simple benefits of fencing include: improved motor skills, social and perceptual growth, self-discipline, self-confidence and self-responsibility.

Tips, tactics and ideas are shared by athletes, coaches and fans. 09 | Teams that live together win together! 14 | Ten ideas to improve your money health


Informative articles on sports health & fitness. 04 | Unlock your athletic potential! 06 | Crossroads Corner – Balance versus core

The Niagara Swords Fencing Club offers summer camps for both children and youth. The mornings start with an introduction to fencing for the seven to 10-year-old campers. The focus of this camp is on developing FUNdamental movement skills consistent with other sports but with a fencing twist. Campers use age-appropriate equipment so they can get the most enjoyment of the sport. For the afternoon sessions, the focus is on campers of ages 11 to 15. At this age, youth are introduced to more competitive fencing-specific skills, all while igniting a passion for the sport and physical activity.


Entertaining, informative and engaging articles on local athletes, sports and teams. 05 | Football Niagara helps develop skills beyond the gridiron 07 | Memorial Tournament chips in for a great Koschok 08 | On Board 2016 15 | River Lions look to continue winning ways on and off the court 18 | Make summer even more exciting with s ports camps


For more information about fencing classes and camps, visit

Up-to-date information on what is happening. 16 | Making strides on two wheels 17 | RICC to support Top Prospects’ NCAA Exposure Camp in St. Catharines


Profiling community sports in words and photographs. 10 | IceDogs continue magical playoff run in Eastern Conference Final 11 | Results from the BHi Youth All-Ontario Cup Spring Teaser 12 | Learn how to play soccer while having fun 13 | The roller girls are here! 19 | Welcome to the Bradlee Ryall Golf Academy at Royal Niagara



Unlock your athletic potential! How can strength training help an athlete?


With the growing trend of strength and conditioning in youth sports nowadays, it is important to understand exactly how it works and what an athlete should expect to gain from strength training. Over the course of the last few years, I have been fortunate enough to coach many different athletes across multiple sports, both professional and amateur. More recently, I have had the opportunity to coach and train an Ontario Hockey Federation championship team in the Bantam A loop (Grimsby Kings), multiple highly recruited football players on both sides of the border, and even some young athletes who are just starting their journey. What my experience dictates is that, far too often, there are misconceptions that strength training will directly make people into better athletes or make them perform their sport more proficiently. This is wishful thinking! What strength training will do is strengthen the body and increase confidence so that athletes can better perform the activities that are required in their sport(s). This is often referred to as “unlocking athletic potential”. However, the specific skills of each sport must be acquired and improved within the sport’s own practices, not strength-training sessions. For example: doing push-ups will make someone better at doing push-ups and swinging a baseball bat

will make one better at swinging a baseball bat, but push-ups will help one swing a bat with more power and strength. For the athletes I coach, I leave the sportsspecific skills development (stick handling, catching, shooting) to the coaches of their teams. We work on a training plan that develops athletic qualities across all areas of sport (speed, strength, power, agility, quickness, confidence) that enhances the training of their own coaches. But, much like any skill development, it all takes time. With the championship hockey team, we started training during the summer of 2015 in a local park long before the season was set to begin. We trained one day a week to start, increased the sessions to two per week in the early portion of the season, and then decreased to one per week as the team went deep into the playoffs. With regards to the football players I train, we begin our strength-training program just a few weeks after the end of the season and train until the next season begins, being sure to track progress and re-assess goals along the way. 

EDITOR Gord Dearbon


Mark Danecker, Madeline Leblanc, Laura Leftko, Ball Hockey Interna tional, Len Sheldrake, Niagara Falls Soccer Club, Patrick Fife, True North Training, Trevor Van Nest, Core Sport Communications, Niagara River Lions, Bethany Community Church, Residence & Conference Centres, the SportsXpress team and members of the local sports community. Fencing Article submitted by Niagara Swords Fencing Club Fencing Article submit ted by Niagara Swords Fencing Club Ian Goring, Vivid Eye Photography, Football Niagara, the SportsXpress team and numerous sports enthusiasts.

PARTNERSHIP Ajax/Pickering EDITIONS Brampton Chatham/kent Hamilton Kingston London Niagara Ottawa Sarnia-Lambton Waterloo Region Winnipeg

Beleville/Quinte Brant Country Guelph Halton Region Lloydminster Mississauga Oshawa Whitby Peterborough Windsor Northumberland

PRESIDENT/CEO Walter Browning

Strength-training sessions at TNT are always conducted in a supervised environment, and the reason for this is safety. At TNT, athletes can completely focus on unlocking their athletic potential to become more confident and more skilled in their chosen sport.

True North Training True North Training is the premiere all-ages strength-training facility in the region, located at 299 Lake St. in Grimsby. Visit TNT online at www.

299 Lake Street | Grimsby, ON | L3M 4M8

289-235-8088 4

Cole Burniston


Football Niagara helps develop skills beyond the gridiron Niagara strives to provide the opportunity for young players to experience the game of tackle football, along with everything the sport has to offer. While some may view football merely between the sidelines, Football Niagara values the abundance of takeaways that go well beyond the gridiron. They embrace the ability to impart critical skills on the field, but also use this learning to help players become better prepared for life off the field. While some people may only see a forceful tackle, a tough block, a hard-driving run, a spiraling throw, or a sure-handed catch, these physical acts can also

Submitted by Core Sport Communications Photos submitted by Football Niagara

lead to phenomenal development. Football Niagara teaches players to develop strength, agility, and flexibility — among other things. In addition, while it is no secret that there is a physical component to the sport, individuals can face these challenges in an environment where safety protocols are strictly enforced. Players can enhance participation, gain discipline, and become stronger, healthier individuals. Not only does this development garner on-field success, it also helps youth get the most out of their day-today lives.

the opportunity to witness first-hand the results of smooth and efficient teamwork. The team’s cooperation sparks a sense of mutual respect and camaraderie that can transcend the game of football. When they see the advantage of cooperating as a team in a single effort, they can utilize this experience in their non-football endeavors.

Players learn the finer points that make the game so great. Individuals can better recognize the rationale behind play selections and formations, as well as game strategy. Football Niagara also looks to ensure that players enjoy its many additional benefits.

Those gifted with the ability to motivate and inspire often shine in the context of football, and Football Niagara believes these leadership skills can be meaningfully developed by having each participant actively involved in their well-structured team programs.

First and foremost, players are able to establish a sense of community. By being part of a tight-knit group, they can witness the profound bond associated with the Football Niagara fraternity. Participants have

To learn more about Football Niagara and the ways in which these on and off-field skills are developed, please visit their website ( or contact them via email (

Moreover, when facing a tough opponent, players gain courage; when encountering defeat, players learn humility; when celebrating a win, players develop esteem and respect for well-executed activity.



Crossroads Corner Balance versus core

Regardless of one’s athletic discipline, there can be little doubt that the development of a solid core is paramount to both the maximization of performance and the prevention of injury. Less clear is the definition of a well-developed core, or the most efficient methods by which to achieve optimal development. All too often, athletes mistakenly consider the presence of a “six pack” as the badge of superior core function. In truth, the rotational power provided by well-developed obliques, and the stabilizing foundation provided by wellstrengthened lumbar, hip and pelvic floor musculature are often more critical. A well-honed core allows an athlete to remain physically centred to the task at hand and resistant to external loads imparted by

By Mark Danecker

an opponent’s body contact, often delivered with the intent of moving the athlete off his/ her centre in efforts to compromise performance. Powerful and precise arm and leg movements essential to high-level athletics, such as sprinting, jumping, and throwing, require a stable core around which to perform. Furthermore, a strong and stable core is essential for the development of superior balance, as demonstrated by the strength and control of a wrestler or gymnast who must achieve and maintain balance whether supported upon his/her hands or feet. In fact, balance and core stabilization do not function independently, but rather in concert. When designing a program targeting both core strengthening and balance, it is essential that we train both parameters together as a system. In order to combine both core strengthening and balance training, one should employ the use of specialized functional training equipment, examples of which are the Bosu ball, Theraball, mini tramp, medicine balls, heavy ropes and power sleds. A knowledgeable trainer, athletic therapist, or physiotherapist can design a safe and effective strengthening program that targets, in a progressive manner, both balance and core stability systems. Once a proficient level has been achieved, it can be very beneficial to introduce

Unit 3, 1st Floor, Corporate Centre 3550 Schmon Parkway Thorold, ON


a resistance-training component to the core/balance program in order to develop functional strength and power while reinforcing sport-specific motor patterns, or to provide specific stimulation required to fully recover from injury. Resistance training alone cannot provide such development. When recovering from injury, the athlete must prepare meticulously to ensure that all facets of physical recovery have been achieved, heavily emphasizing core strength, balance, and sport specific flexibility. His/her return to sport should never be defined merely by one’s recovery to pre-injury form, but rather as a bold statement to coaches, teammates and competitors alike, that the athlete has returned stronger and fitter than ever before. As the physical demands of daily activities often parallel those of sport, these principles hold true for each and every one of us. Rehabilitating one’s injuries can often be very challenging, both physically and mentally. One’s true strength is seldom realized until living strong is the only option. Rust never sleeps. 



Memorial Tournament chips in for a great Koschok Two things that Andy Koschok really loved in life were kids and golf. In combining those two loves, Andy, who was a dedicated employee of the Region’s Water and WasteWater Division, created a tournament with funds going to local children’s charities. After running the tournament for 30 years, Andy passed away and a group of dedicated volunteers stepped forward to carry on in Andy’s memory. They appropriately renamed the event the Andy Koschok Memorial.

special needs, Bethesda is an organization that has continued to develop and make an impact since its establishment in 1937. From 2008 to 2014, Bethesda adopted seven new children’s programs, most of which are focused on treatment of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other special needs. In response, Bethesda has expanded its service mandates, now serves over 1,000 children and youth with ASD or other special needs.

Since its inception 44 years ago, the tournament has helped many different charities that operate within the Region. In 2015, the tournament was looking for an organization that could most utilize the money generated from the event and Bethesda emerged front and centre.

In 2013, Bethesda moved forward with plans to construct a new Family Centre at 3310 Schmon Parkway. Bethesda is commit-

ted to constructing a 27,000 square-foot, state-of-the-art building that will benefit the staff, children and their families that access our services for support. The money generated from the Andy Koschok Memorial has been key to helping with the expensive specialized equipment that programming will require once the doors open this summer!

With the main purpose of enhancing the lives of both adults and children with























On Board 2016 By Madeline Leblanc

Nineteen-year-old Madeline Leblanc has continued to turn her passion of standup paddle boarding (SUP) into a fundraiser to honour two friends lost to cancer. Madeline bought her first board and started paddling in 2012, after she fell in love with the sport at age ten. In 2011, Julia Turner passed away at fifteen due to a brain tumor and, earlier that same year, Lynn Lambert passed at thirty-seven. They were two wonderful people that deserve to be remembered because of the legacy’s they left behind. They were always giving back to others in the community and putting others needs before their own. They both taught all of Welland to treasure every moment of your life, and dedicate

yourself to helping others when you can. As a result of the young girls’ passings, Madeline created On Board. For the first event (held on July 10, 2014), she paddled 10 kilometres down the Welland Canal in a little over two hours to raise funds for brain cancer research. Creating On Board was her way of saying goodbye to Julia and Lynn, and also her way of giving back to the cancer community. The impact this event has left on Madeline has driven her to run this event again for a third consecutive year.

the Welland International Flatwater Centre (WIFC) on Townline Rd. From there, participants will paddle to the Pen Financial Credit Union Flatwater Centre, then turn around and head back to the WIFC. At the starting point, one of the event’s sponsors (Ausmosis Board Works) will be hosting a free SUP demo day if people would like to try paddle boarding. There will be a free BBQ as well, along with extra On Board t-shirts that will be on sale for $15.

On Thursday July 14, Madeline will be paddling 10 kilometres down the Welland Canal and encourages others to join her. The paddling journey will start at 2 p.m. at

Information for participants and donors

Sports Camps Canada and SportsXpress have joined forces and want to hear from you! Sports Camps Canada, subsidiary of US Sports Camps, and Canada’s newest provider of summer sports camps, is coming to Ontario this summer! Sports Camps Canada (SCC) was founded in 2015 and is the official operator of Nike Sports Camps in Canada. SCC partners with the country’s best coaches to direct camps to provide week-long sports camps to boys & girls ages 4-18. With over 15 locations, and sport specific training for all ability levels, there is a camp perfect for everyone! SportsXpress is pleased to offer five lucky winners the opportunity to attend a Nike Sports Camp in Canada this summer. To apply, applicants must write a 500 word essay and include one great sports picture on the topic of “Why Sports Are Important to You”. Winners will receive a one-week scholarship to a Sports Camps Canada/Nike Sports Camp of their choice valued at $500. The scholarship winners will be notified by SportsXpress. All winning essays will be published at in your region.


Essay Contest Why Sports Are Important to You? (please include a great sports picture with your 500 word essay)

Winners receive a scholarship to a Sports Canada/Nike Sports Camp

$500 Value!

Please submit all essays and pictures by June 30, 2016 Essays and pictures can be submitted to



Those who are interested in paddling must contact Madeline through email at or Facebook at maddisrideonboard. There is no registration fee or age limit. Paddlers will meet at 1:30 p.m. Those wishing to participate are encouraged to bring a kayak, canoe, or SUP board as well as a personal flotation device such as a lifejacket. At 2 p.m. the paddling will start and continue for approximately two or three hours. Afterwards, all participants are invited for a social: swim and refreshments! You may donate directly by cash or cheque to Madeline (cheques can be made out to the Canadian Cancer Society) or online using the link: http://convio. IFE_ON_CommunityPartnerships_?pg=t eam&fr_id=21280&team_id=340906#. Vtd7wFKQbzI. The fundraising goal for this year is $3,000!


Teams that live together win together! Submitted by the Residence & Conference Centre – Niagara-on-the-Lake & Welland With the spring season now upon us, athletes from all across North America are starting to make their travel plans for tournaments and games that will be taking place across the continent. With Niagara quickly becoming a major sports destination for both elite and amateur athletes, players and their families can find themselves travelling to compete multiple times a month, adding to the already costly rates for registration, equipment, etc. The Residence & Conference Centre (RCC) is a very affordable option for sport teams, officials, and accompanying friends and family travelling on a budget. The RCC has two great locations in Niagara: one on the Niagara College campus in Niagara-OnThe-Lake and the other on its campus in Welland. The locations are both fully booked during the school year as student dorms but, in the summer, the RCC is transforms them into ideal locations to host sports teams coming into Niagara.

Sales and Conference Manager of both locations.

With a price point of around $89 per night, the RCC locations in Niagara have successfully hosted teams for many different sporting competitions including last year’s World Dragon Boat Championships and events held at the Welland International Flatwater Centre. RCC has proven capable of hosting large scale events!

Each location has over 100 private, two-bedroom suites with a bathroom and kitchenette. The locations also have conference rooms that can be utilized by coaches and teams during their stay. The RCC makes it clear that their facilities are different from the traditional hotels with respect to some luxuries. That being said, teams can take advantage of the dorm-style rooms by making their own meals (saving time and money) and having the entire team stay together in one central place. So, for a great team-bonding experience, don’t hesitate — teams that live together will win together! Call your friendly staff at RCC to book your team today.

“Once team officials understand what we are offering compared to traditional hotels, we truly become an ideal location for teams looking for a hotel-alternative at a reasonable price point,” remarks Mike Parente,

stay with us

For group discounts and inquiries, please contact Mike Parente, Sales & Conference Manager at 905-641-4435 Ext 2009 or email


Affordable Summer Accommodations 905-732-9700



IceDogs continue magical playoff run in East/West Final By Core Sport Communications Photo Credit Vivid Eye Photography

The IceDogs began the 2016 OHL playoffs as a fourth seed, not a true underdog, but certainly not a team that was expected to win eight of its first nine games! The IceDogs have been absolutely dominant on the ice throughout the playoffs, defeating the Ottawa 67s 4 – 1 in the first round, the Kingston Frontenacs 4 – 0 in the second round and the Barrie Colts in four games to win the Eastern Conference title! The team is now facing the London Knights for the OHL championship and a berth in the Memorial Cup tournament. The IceDogs have been buoyed by strong team play and excellent goaltending throughout the playoffs from veteran net minder Alex Nedelijkovic. Offensively, they have been led by Josh Ho

Sang and Pavel Jenys. Niagara’s playoff run has brought the entire Niagara Region together and local fans aren’t afraid to show it! You can’t drive down the road nowadays without passing a car with an IceDogs flag proudly

flying overhead, the electronic signs on the St. Catharines transit buses all boast “Go Dogs Go” and restaurants across the Region are showing support for the IceDogs. The IceDogs’ own #MakeThemSeeRed hashtag is scattered across many prominent Niagara social media platforms! In their relatively short nine-year history, Niagara has only advanced to the Eastern Conference final three times let alone the East-West Final! The London Knights are also on a tear so it’s shaping up to be an incredible round of hockey. Tickets are tough to come by but, if you can get some, be sure to show your support for the IceDogs. We want to prove to the rest of the league that we’re the best so we need to #MakeThemSeeRed!

TEAM SPONSORSHIP. FUN, EASY & TASTY! You’re in luck! We can help you raise funds for your team, cause or event. Ask for Steve!

giant tv screens Dine in • take out delivery open 11 til late patio’s open! Boston Pizza Americana Resort 8444 Lundy’s Lane, NF

905-356-6253 10


Results from the BHi Youth All-Ontario Cup Spring Teaser As the sun starts to rise a little earlier every morning and the temperatures start to rise, spring is in the air. This means it is time again for the annual Youth All-Ontario Cup held at the Ball Hockey International (BHi) St. Catharines location. Championship Sunday saw a lot of local content from around Niagara as well as some visiting teams from outside the region. Old man winter was holding on during the early-April event as cold winds, and even snow squalls, were taking place outside the protective structure where the finals took place. Cameras were rolling for all the final games with commentary streaming live online. First up was the bantam final, where the Niagara Knights were on a mission to take the trophy and top spot in the tournament. From the first whistle, the visiting Brantford team was out-matched in this contest, falling behind early and unable to recover. At the final

buzzer, the Knights were victorious 9 – 1. Playing like a man possessed, Carson Eden lit the lamp four times and added three assists for a seven-point effort! Next up was a much closer game between two fierce Niagara rivals in the Peewee Division; the (bright pink) Niagara Rampage versus the Welland Rebels. It was a back-and-forth contest with multiple lead changes but, in the end, the Rampage managed to hold off the surging Rebels. Nick Canjar (two assists) and Matt Gillardi (one goal and one assist) lead the way for the Rampage. Action is just starting to heat up for BHI St. Catharines and Welland. With the spring leagues now under way, summer is just around the corner. In July, BHI Welland will be hosting the next event in the Youth All-Ontario Cup Series, the JumpStart Jammer.



Learn how to play soccer while having fun By Niagara Falls Soccer Club

As spring is blooming and the summer is just within reach, parents across Niagara are looking at all the various summer programs available to keep their children and teens occupied and outside. Whether their child is already the sporty kind, or they want their child to be more physically active or socially interactive, parents find that soccer is an excellent way to promote this whilst enjoying the summer sun! The Niagara Falls Soccer Club (NFSC) has been a staple within the Niagara Falls community since 1959 and has been home to generations of families/members every summer for almost 60 years. With 60 to 70 house-league teams, 27 travel teams, and the longest consecutively run tournament in Ontario (54 years strong), the AC Douglas Tournament and Festival, NFSC continues to strive to provide the best programs and put forth quality every year for every one of its members, youth or adult. NFSC also gives participation medals to all the players and provides a fun treat to end the season on a good note. NFSC has a “Turn No Child Away” policy. If there is a child that wants to play soccer, regardless of financial ability or playing ability, he/she will have a place to play at NFSC! There are also no deadlines or late fees! The organization accepts registrations until there are no uniforms left to hand out. The office is open five days a week and staff will greet you with smiles every time. So, if you are looking for something for your child to do this summer and if your kids are looking to have fun and learn the great game of soccer, your best bet is the Niagara Falls Soccer Club!

NFSC’s 2016 outdoor house-league program will be kicking off its opening day on Saturday, May 28. This co-ed program, for children and youth ages three and up, is a 13 to 14-week program that runs every Saturday morning and until the end of August. The U3/4 Kinderkicks and U5/6 Minis sessions are an hour in duration each week. Each session includes 30 minutes of skills, drills and fun activities followed by a 30 minute game against another team. The U7/8, U9/10, U11/12 and U13/15 divisions each have one practice during the week on a weeknight and a game on Saturdays. With all the divisions, U3/4 to U11/12, there is no score keeping involved as per OSA mandates and LTPD (Long Term Player Development) guidelines which can be found on the OSA website. Only when you reach the U13/15 division does score keeping come into play and playoff games at the end of the season. This format promotes FUN and develops LOVE for the game while focusing on the kids learning it. Costs of the programs, each of which includes a full uniform (jersey, shorts and socks) and a ball, can be found online at www.

NFSC Spring and Summer Programs for ages 5 to 12 2016 Jr Titans Academy Spring Clinic Starting Friday, June 3rd to August 5th 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm (8 Sessions) 2016 Jr Titans Academy Summer Camp July 11th to July 15th, 1/2 day 9:00 am to 12:00 pm 2016 AC Douglas Tournament & Festival August 6th & 7th



The roller girls are here!

By Laura Leftko aka ‘Tennessee Frisky’ Photo Credit Ian Goring

As one of the fastest growing sports in the world, roller derby is a far cry from what most people remember seeing on television in the mid-20th century. Started in the 1930s, roller derby was more of a spectacle and side-show than a competitive sport, something akin to choreographed WWE wrestling matches. However, this has not been the case in the last decade, as contemporary derby was resurrected in Austin, Texas in the early 2000s. This version, which is fast paced and relies on skill and strategy as opposed to histrionics, set the course for derby to grow in popularity over the last fifteen years. It has held on to mementos from the past though, with players skating under clever monikers and dressing in fun and personalized “boutfits”. So, while you may see names such as Kimikazzi and Shannybal Lecter on the track, the days of throwing elbows and starting fist fights are long gone. With the clash between the world of sport and the fun of theatrics drawing renewed attention from sports fans, it is no surprise that countless leagues are now formed yearly across the globe. Roller derby has come roaring back to life and is alive and thriving here in Niagara! The Niagara Roller Girls (NRG) is Niagara’s

and sport continue to evolve.

first, and only, all women, full-contact, flat-track roller derby league. Founded in 2012, NRG is a grassroots, volunteer-driven league with a “for the skater, by the skater” philosophy. This isn’t your average sports league. It’s focus is twofold: athleticism and community involvement. As a not-for-profit organization run solely by volunteers, NRG relies on the time and effort of its members and community. Members vary in age and skill, and come from all walks of life: from nurses to graphic designers, engineers to activists, students, teachers, and mothers alike. NRG prides itself in being involved in regional events and festivals such as Grape and Wine, as well as raising money for local charities during its games.

You can get more information on their season schedules, as well as the local events they will be participating in, by visiting In the coming months, bouts are scheduled for May 7, May 28, June 11 and June 25 at the Haig Bowl Arena in St. Catharines. Whether you are a loyal fan or a new to the sport, bouts are family friendly and full of fun. So, if you are looking for some hard-hitting action in the Niagara region, look no further! Interested in joining or volunteering as an official or referee? NRG offers training in our volunteer positions for those who don’t wish to skate but still want in on the action. Contact membership@niagararollergirls. com for more information!

With its 2016 Season already underway, the Niagara Roller Girls boasts several teams made up of exemplary female athletes. The three home teams, travel team, and junior team are all training hard and looking forward to a bright and successful future as the league



Ten ideas to improve your money health By Trevor Van Nest, B.Comm. (Hons.) CFP®, Money Coach

1. Pay yourself first: A phrase that rings true for millions. The con-

cept is one where a portion of your income is saved for your future — automatically, on every payday.


Buy things with cash saved: There is nothing better than paying for things with money saved (see #1). Saving cash for purchases ensures you can afford the things you buy; a certain way to avoid debt.

7. Buy experiences over stuff: Make sure there is room for experi-

ences in your budget. They have a longer “life” than the latest new attention-grabbing widget that will lose its luster quicker than you think.



Watch the Latte Factor: Little things can whittle away your wealth. Know that $4 a day adds up to $100,000 over 30 years, so make sure you’re getting good value from your small purchases. This also means watch your shopping frequency.

4. Teach your children about money: Talk to your children about

Keep your investing simple: The more people seem to know about investing, the worse their portfolio returns. Over-confidence breeds mistakes. Keep fees down, diversification up, and stick with simple proven passive strategies.

Get rid of debt: “Eliminate debt as fast as possible,” was the answer 75 percent of the Forbes 500 list gave when asked, “What is the most important thing you did to generate your wealth?” ‘Nuff said! giving, saving and spending; teach them about advertising; and let them make mistakes with their money — without bailing them out.

5. Don’t forget to give: One of the best things about money is what it can do for others. If you believe the old adage, “Giving is better than receiving,” try to give “off the top” before the month begins.

6. Link your career to your passion: It is never too late to re-tool

and change things up to seek work that you are passionate about. As most people change careers three to five times, you won’t be alone if you switch it up this year.



Keep money in perspective: If financial contentedness is what you seek, it doesn’t matter whether you have a little or a lot. Don’t let it consume your life. Manage money responsibly and you’ll be better off than most.

That’s it. For many, the financial category is one that occupies far too much energy, time and focus. Reflect on these 10 ideas and you’ll be able to direct your energy to far more important things in life.

Unsure of the Road to Take? Maybe it’s time to seek the guidance of a �lat-fee Money Coach.

Personalized and confiden�al advice is offered in all of these important categories: • Permanent Debt Elimina�on • Household Budgets that Work • Investment Por�olio Reviews • Divorcée Financial Advice

• Re�rement Planning & Cash Flow • Investor Educa�on • Paren�ng & Money Advice • ...and More!

289-969-4180 | 26 Hisco� Street, St. Catharines


Book your FREE no-obliga�on consulta�on today. Owner Trevor Van Nest, B.Comm. (Hons.), CFP® has personally helped hundreds of clients across Canada take control of their financial lives – with absolutely NO product selling.


River Lions look to continue winning ways on and off the court

Submitted by the Niagara River Lions

Your Niagara River Lions have quickly become an integral piece in the Niagara sports community. Residents from across the Niagara Region have quickly become enamoured with the team, the Meridian Centre atmosphere, and professional basketball in the community. Not only do members of the community feel attached to these athletes and proud of their accomplishments on the court, but the team feels highly connected to the region and all of its citizens. In an attempt to highlight the importance of this relationship between the River Lions and the Niagara Region, the team is passionate about giving back to the community. Throughout the season, the River Lions have been active in the Niagara community, attending various events, speaking at schools across the Region, and participating in some truly unique community initiatives. These events have varied throughout the season, but each leaves participating team members grateful to be part of the incredible Niagara community. One such initiative was the Habitat for Humanity Niagara build that the River Lions were able to assist with in Welland in mid-April. Team members donned their hard hats and work boots and put in a long day of work in the sun! This build was an exceptionally special project for the River Lions as it hit close to home for River Lions Head Coach Grâce Lokole. Coach Lokole, a Welland native, grew-up in a Habitat for Humanity home, a home that his mother still lives in. Having the opportunity to give back to a program that has been so influential in his own life was important to Coach Lokole

and support when the guys take to the hard court at the Meridian Centre.

and thus to the entire River Lions team. We were so glad to be involved and thankful to have the opportunity to show how much the support from the entire Niagara community has meant to us this season.

It’s been these fans, along with the support team that the River Lions have brought together, that create a phenomenal atmosphere game after game. No matter when the game is, the crowd is always engaged and excited! It’s now time for these dedicated fans to be rewarded, with a little playoff basketball.

The River Lions are also looking to continue their community involvement throughout the summer. This summer, the River Lions, in partnership with Abrax Rehab and Training, are hosting two youth summer camps. These camps will look to develop basketball athletes both on and off the court, striving to build character and, ultimately, better individuals through the game of basketball. What will separate this experience from others will be professionalism and their

The River Lions are entering into the 2016 National Basketball League of Canada (NBL Canada) playoffs. After cementing their third-place position in the Central division, the River Lions will take on the Windsor Express as the calendar flips to May. The Express are looking to win their third straight title, so the River Lions will have quite the challenge ahead of them to bring them down. However, the most important people believe that this team can win it all – the team members! The players, coaching staff, and support staff all believe that this River Lions team has the depth and skill to defeat all of the other teams in the league.

Playoff tickets

“athlete-centred” approach while developing the FUNdamental basketball (and life) skills that should be established at an early age. These camps will be hosted on July 9 and 10 and August 13 and 14 at Ridley College’s Griffith Gymnasium. To register your child for these camps, please visit riverlions. ca/14545/summer-camps today.

Tickets are now available for Round 1 of the 2016 NBL Canada playoffs! Visit today to reserve your tickets. Stay in touch for scheduling updates as the River Lions undertake their playoff run – – and come out and cheer on your team!

This inaugural season for the River Lions has been absolutely incredible! From the home opener, capped off by a Clinton Springer-Williams buzzer beater, to the team’s first winning streak, to their Fan Appreciation Night, the River Lions have created amazing buzz throughout the Niagara Region. The team has created a loyal (and LOUD) fan base that is always eager to cheer



Making strides on two wheels Evan’s ride for autism

By Len Sheldrake

When Evan was two, he was diagnosed with severe autism. We were told he would never speak or be able to learn complex tasks like riding a bicycle. Nevertheless, we worked tirelessly and Evan kept improving — often two steps forward and then one back. Slowly, Evan learned to speak. When he was 12, the training wheels came off his bike! Something happened to me that first time I witnessed Evan take his first few strides on his bicycle without the aid of training wheels. That moment in time changed me as a person as I was given a gift in Evan. Right then, a miracle began to take shape. I began to be positive and stayed that way. I could be thankful and truly happy with the things in life that I once took for granted. I saw that we could make a difference. I wanted to share his celebration of accomplishment with anyone and everyone. All those affected by Autism Spectrum Dis-


Your Community



Sports Connection

Magazine • Web • Sports & Event Marketing


order needed hope in their lives and so.... Evan’s Ride for Autism was born.

Zone will add a fun diversion for the younger participants.

Evan’s Ride is an annual family-friendly cycling fundraiser to support those living with autism in Niagara. The eighth annual Evan’s Ride will take place on Sunday, May 29 with an 11-kilometre or 22-kilometre cycling route over the scenic roads of Smithville. Chris Biggs and Jason Barr of 97.7 HTZ-FM’s Biggs and Barr Show will host the opening ceremonies. They will be backed up by the HTZ-FM Roadies who will entertain with an Interactive Zone and on-site contests. Lunch will be provided for the riders, and a Kids

Evan’s story reminds us what can happen when we work together to make a miracle. Visit to register for the ride or make a donation. Proceeds from Evan’s Ride will be donated to Autism Community.


RICC to support Top Prospects’ NCAA Exposure Camp in St. Catharines By Patrick Fife

It is with great pleasure that Royal Imperial Collegiate of Canada announces that the Knights Football Academy will be partnering with Top Prospects Canada to host an NCAA Exposure Camp in St. Catharines. The twoday camp will take place June 11 and 12. The camp is described as an opportunity

More information: Top Prospects Canada, founded in 2010, is a platform that allows high school football players to create a free athletic profile in order to help them be recruited by NCAA and CIS coaches. Its president is Shomari Williams. For more information, please contact Royal Imperial Collegiate of Canada (RICC) is a private university-preparatory boarding school in St. Catharines. The school currently enrols grade 9 through to postgraduate. Its mottos are “Gateway

for players in the classes of 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 to perform in front of multiple NCAA coaches. Over the course of the weekend, which consists of four padded practices, players will be able to showcase themselves to coaches that are looking to recruit Canadian student-athletes.

Pricing and registration:

to your Dream Universities” and “School. Tour. Life.” For more information, please visit

Early-bird registration pricing: $325 for a commuter (1 meal) or $425 for a camper (housing accommodations and 4 meals). HST will be added to this price. To get this early bird pricing, you must register and pay before Sunday May 22.

RICC’s football program, Royal Imperial Knights, is a prep football academy that plays a full American football schedule in the U.S. and provides opportunities for development and exposure through the football season and a rigorous offseason training program. Its football director/head coach is Jeff Brown. For more information, please contact Coach Brown at 905-9062331 or, or visit www.

Late registration pricing: $375 for a commuter (1 meal) or $475 for a camper (housing accommodations and 4 meals). HST will be added to this price. To register, please go to



Make summer even more exciting with sports camps By: Bethany Community Church We are loading up on the fun here at Bethany this summer, giving parents lots of options for their kids with sports camps that they are sure to enjoy while increasing their skill level. Last year, we partnered with the FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes) out of New Hampshire, and had a great Soccer Camp. Head Clinician Phil Tuttle (former MLS player) and his team taught the campers many new skills and refined others through various drills, games and other fun activities. Participants not only developed better soccer skills, but learned social and other skills that could help them, both on the field and off. We had such a good response last year from parents that we are having them back for two weeks this year. Camp 1 (for kids in grades 3 – 6 as of September 2016): July 11 – 15, 9 a.m. to noon at Woodland Public School (Seventh Street Louth, St. Catharines) Camp 2 (for kids in grades 3 – 6 as of September 2016): July 18 – 22, 9 a.m. to noon at Beacon Christian School (300 Scott Street, St. Catharines) Later in August, we are partnering with Onside Sports out of Guelph who have been running very successful programs for the past five years. These full-day camps feature a week of ball hockey, a week of soccer and a boatload of fun — an experience kids will talk about until they get back next year. Childcare is available one hour before and after each day’s program.

Week 1 – Ball Hockey (for kids in grades 1 – 6 as of September 2016): Aug 15 – 19, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Bethany Community Church (1388 Third Street, St. Catharines) Week 2 – Soccer (for kids in grades 1 – 6 as of September 2016): Aug. 22 – 26, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Woodland Public School (Seventh Street Louth, St. Catharines) Through our sports programs, Bethany aims at developing athletes in four areas: athletically, mentally, socially and spiritually. It is our desire to see kids grow into adults “with character” rather than to be “characters.” It is important to develop kids and athletes to be better equipped to handle issues in sports and in life. They learn that they can accomplish more when they work together as a team, and that they need to think through and initiate actions rather than just react to situations. Life, even for the pro athlete, is a struggle if we look to others to define our value or acceptance. Visit and click on Upward Sports for more information call Tim Tulloch at 905-937-5300 x209.

OXFORD LEARNING IS… A SMARTER SUMMER All Ages. All Grades. All Subjects.

ENROL TODAY! St. Catharines 905.685.8141 18

Join the conversation!

Proudly Canadian


Welcome to the Bradlee Ryall Golf Academy at Royal Niagara We are pleased to announce that our award-winning Bradlee Ryall Golf Academy has now partnered with Kaneff Golf Properties, one of Canada’s iconic golf brands. This spring, the academy will be operating at all six Kaneff courses, including Royal Niagara Golf Club. It is our mission to grow the game through acquired teaching methods and welldesigned programs for youth and adults alike so participants not only learn to play better but have fun doing it. We have over 60 different programs ranging from entrylevel clinics, competitive boys and girls, and individual on-course instruction for both adults and junior golfers — something to suit everyone! Royal Niagara has hired well-known local PGA of Canada Professional Brody Whetham to operate as the Head Teaching Professional. In addition to Brody, PGA of Canada Professionals Chris Poulouski (Head Golf Professional at Sparrow Lakes Golf Club) and Tony Evershed (one of only six Master Golf Professionals in Canada) will be joining our team of staff and volunteers. All three of these gentlemen have extensive teaching backgrounds and are looking forward to sharing their knowledge in making the

academy the #1 place to not only develop our future golfers but also ensure that they play and enjoy the game even more!

beginners, ladies, and for adults looking to break 80, break 90 and break 100 and much more,” says Bradlee.

The Bradlee Ryall Golf Academy is focusing on junior golf development by hosting a full-day, week-long, summer golf camps — the only ones in the Niagara Peninsula. The camps are being offered all summer, right up to the Labour Day weekend and have provision for optional extended hours so parents can drop off and pick up their children before and after work. Junior golf clinics will also be available utilizing the junior “learning pyramid”.

In 2012, the Golf Association of Ontario recognized Ryall and BraeBen as the Junior Facility of the Year and in 2014 as a finalist for the national Future Links Facility of the Year. “We have been successful because we try to ensure that our students are getting more than just a golf lesson. It’s like school, where they are part of a larger group and we try to educate their parents so students and parents understand where their child is headed and that there is always a direction to where they are going next,” notes Bradlee.

Ryall, who was named PGA of Ontario Junior Leader of the Year at the end of 2015, is looking to take this learning pyramid that his team developed (at the City of Mississauga’s BraeBen Golf Academy) and customize it for adult programs at the Kaneff Golf properties. Students, of all ages and experience, work their way up through classes similar to the system used in karate and swimming but, instead of receiving belts or badges for graduating from one level to the next, they receive rubber bracelets to identify their progression. “We’re looking to grow our adult business too, with programs and clinics for

6 1 0 2 r o f W NE

Save 10% with promo code “NF2016”

Junior Camps / Junior Clinics Junior League / High Performance Teams Private/Semi Private Lessons Adult Clinics / Playing Lessons

905-455-4080 ext 3245 or Online




Junior Day and Half Day Camps | Boys & Girls | Ages 4-18 Nike Multi-Sport Sport Specific Training (Hamilton)

Nike Lytton Sports Camps (Toronto) Tennis | Multisport | All Skill Levels Bellbury Tennis Club | Havergal College James Gardens | Withrow Park

Players Paradise Sports Complex Performance Camp

Nike Tennis Camp at Heron Park Tennis Club (Scarborough)

North Toronto Soccer Club Nike Soccer Camp (Toronto)

Tennis | All Skill Levels

Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre

University of Toronto Scarborough High Performance Nike Tennis Camps (Scarborough)

Nike Soccer Camp in York Region (Toronto)

Tennis | High Performance

Mississauga Little Aces Nike Tennis Camps (Mississauga)

Concord-Thornhill Regional Park

Nike Multi-Sport Athletic Development Camp at White Oaks (Niagara-on-the-lake)

Tennis | 10 & Under Tennis Program

White Oaks Resort & Spa Multi-sport Half Day Camps

Nike Sports Camps at Conestoga College (Kitchener)

Nike Ultimate Camp at Havergal College (Toronto)

Lacrosse | Multisport | Fun & Fitness Basketball | Volleyball

Ultimate Frisbee™ | All Skill Levels 1-800-NIKE CAMP All Rights reserved. Nike and the Swoosh design are registered trademarks of Nike, Inc. and its affiliates, and are used under license. Nike is the title sponsor of the camps and has no control over the operation of the camps or the acts or omissions of US Sports Camps.

Nike_canada_sports_express_16_v2.indd 1


4/25/16 1:24 PM

SportsXpress Niagara May/June 2016  
Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you