Healthy mind and body; ‘They’re unstoppable.’

Chance Johnson, 13, of Wilkesboro, accelerates with resistance from a parachute during the third annual Speed & Agility Training Camp.

Chance Purvis, 11, of Elkin, runs doubles as Farando “Sly” Best encourages him during the third annual Speed & Agility Training Camp.

Maecyn Brooks, 9, of Elkin, does an overspeed workout with bungee cords during the third annual Speed & Agility Training Camp.

The country is in the middle of an epidemic. Many kids across the country see summer as an opportunity to sit down and play video games. However, head down to Crater Park on a Monday night, and visitors will find plenty of kids going against the mold.

That’s because Farando Best of Midtown Barber Shop and I Support My Community have teamed up to create an agility camp geared towards children. The third annual Speed & Agility Training Camp has had great success over the years, and this year, the group is larger than ever.

“Putting the seed in a child and watching them grow over the years is a beautiful thing,” said Best, better known as Sly to the locals. “It’s way beyond exercising, it’s about the community.”

Trent Beaver is also a volunteer for the camp, and supporting the youth is important to him.

“We’re out here for the kids,” Beaver said. “We want them to be the best that they can be in whatever they want to do. It creates a community atmosphere, brings the community closer together, and hopefully everybody realizes we’re all out here for the same thing.”

Ages range greatly throughout the camp, with each age group kept separate and rotating around each station. As they grow, Best said it’s great to see them continue on in the camp.

“The bigger kids are the ones that I’ve coached for years. They’re dedicated, and want to be around a great atmosphere with good people,” Best said.

The camp isn’t just for the community and agility; it also stresses the importance of education. Best asks that each person reads before and after the camp and learns something new every day. He stresses that it’s more important to be a student-athlete than be an athlete-student.

“They need to get their mind healthy as well as their body. Once they have a healthy mind and body they can’t stop. Their future is unstoppable if they keep it up,” Best said.

The camp will run through July 27.

Ryan DeCosta can be reached at 336-258-4052 or via Twitter @rsdecosta.

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