First-of-its-kind skills package now available for boys and girls teams

MONTREAL, Dec. 15 /CNW/ - Dairy Farmers of Canada (DFC) is today launching an innovative basketball training/education program called "Up your Game", custom designed by basketball experts for school boys and girls teams throughout Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Ontario. This first-of-its kind program will be delivered in collaboration with provincial School Sport Associations, represented by Sport Management International (SMI).

The heart of the program is a test of endurance, speed, agility and skill known as the "The Beast" that motivates student athletes to perform exercises and drills in their school gymnasium.  Coaches set up the gauntlet-style course and have student athletes run "The Beast" during their first practice to establish base scores. The coach enters individual results online where student athletes and coaches can see individual and team results.

The program has been extensively tested with school basketball teams and coaches and has garnered recognition and accolades from one of Canada's top level university basketball coaches, Roy Rana, with Ryerson University.

"I am pleased to participate and endorse this program, and I am confident it will be a tough challenge that student athletes will be proud to get through," said Rana.  "The Beast will motivate athletes to improve their skills, but most of all; it will test their determination and their will to win.  This type of program is going to prepare these young student athletes for the next level."

"Dairy Farmers of Canada is proud to offer this program to young student athletes because we believe good nutrition and physical activity are both crucial to maintaining good health," said Ian MacDonald, national director, marketing and nutrition with Dairy Farmers of Canada.  "Research has shown that chocolate milk is the ultimate sports recovery drink and perfect for rehydrating and refuelling after an intense workout like "The Beast" or any physically demanding activity."

The Up Your Game Program comes with an array of tools. Coaches will receive a coaches' kit, which includes:

  • a coaches' booklet (handy step by step reference guide)
  • posters for student athletes (explaining benefits and rewards available to them)
  • a tutorial video (step by step instruction on skills and drills and how to set-up and execute "The Beast", including information from a Registered Dietitian explaining general sport nutrition principles and tips to help basketball student athletes recover from an intense game or practice)
  • obstacles to run "The Beast"
  • two "Recharge with Milk" basketballs
  • a course buzzer
  • a practical pad folio to use during practices

The program is also supported by a new website,, that includes a coaches', student athletes', training and  "The Beast" section, as well as a general presentation of the program and nutrition information pertaining to chocolate milk as a sports recovery drink.  Coaches must create their teams profile online where subsequently, student athletes will be able to create their individual profiles and compare their scores on a selection of skills, drills and "The Beast" with other basketball student athletes across Ontario and the Maritimes. A host of rewards await both coaches and student athletes from coach's clinics to shooting hoops with an elite basketball player, gift cards and more.

For more information on the "Up Your Game" program or to receive your free coaches kit, please check out or e-mail us at Also, the entire Up Your Game program is available in French at or by e-mail at

About Dairy Farmers of Canada

Dairy Farmers of Canada (DFC) is mandated to promote the wholesome goodness of dairy products to Canadians, as well as physical activity. All DFC funding comes from the 12,965 dairy farmers currently operating in Canada.

SOURCE Dairy Farmers of Canada (DFC)

For further information: For further information:

Will Lamont / Beatrice Bastedo
Trillium Corporate Communications Inc.
(416)322-3030, ext. 241 / ext. 231

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