From Sunday 17th until Thursday 21st July 2022, a record 86 of the country’s brightest young shinty prospects, from 29 clubs across Scotland, descended upon Strathallan School in Forgandenny, Perthshire for the 2022 Macdonald & Cameron National Player Performance Camp.

Each player, aged between 14 and 17, had been nominated by their youth or senior Club to take part in the Camp, designed to offer the very best in the technical, tactical, physical and psychological aspects of the game.

Throughout the week, the young players received specialist training from Camanachd Association coaches and International players based around all the key skills, techniques and tactics of the game. The camp started with a number of excellent team building sessions in the glorious summer sunshine.

SAMH (Scottish Association for Mental Health) delivered interactive sessions with the budding shinty players on having conversations around what mental health and wellbeing means for yourself, your team and your club and identify some of the key triggers for poor mental health. Yoga was introduced for the first time at shinty camp and the session proved very popular with everyone. The importance of core stability, correct posture and recovery from training and matches is so important nowadays.

A number of awards were presented at the end of Thursday’s session. The award winners were: Player of the Camp: Cam Stephen (Fort William); Most Committed Player: Alexander MacNiven (Kilmallie); Most Improved Player: Brendon Sweeney (Uddingston).

Camanachd Association’s National Development Manager, Ronald Ross commented: “The National Player Performance Camp has once again proved a great success. Since its inception over 27 years ago, the camp has helped hundreds of young players from across the country to improve all aspects of their game from the technical to the physical elements of the sport. Following the world wide pandemic it was vital that as a sport we returned to delivering a full youth player improvement programme. The camps are also a great way for the participants to meet other aspiring shinty players, forging ties and friendships throughout the sport.”

I would also like to say a huge thank you to Macdonald & Cameron for kindly sponsoring this year’s Camp.

Event sponsors Macdonald and Cameron said: We are delighted as a company to have had the opportunity to sponsor the event again and are pleased to hear it has been such a success for all those involved. We wish all the participants the best in the future with their shinty careers.