I have an app called Pocket. If you don’t know it, it’s fantastic. You can grab any article from the net, Twitter, etc., save it to Pocket, and then read it later offline. I have quite a stash of great articles in there to read. Today I came across this one by Rick Howard, M.Ed., CSCS, *D, written a few years back, and it is exactly what I needed to revisit today. So I wanted to share it here.
But what caught my attention was the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) and their foundation of the position statement on 10 Pillars of LTAD:
- Long-term athletic development pathways should accommodate for the highly individualized and non-linear nature of the growth and development of youth.
- The youth of all ages, abilities, and aspirations should engage in long-term athletic development programs that promote both physical fitness and psychosocial wellbeing.
- All youth should be encouraged to enhance physical fitness from early childhood, with a primary focus on motor skills and muscular strength development.
- Long-term athletic development pathways should encourage an early sampling approach for youth that promotes and enhances a broad range of motor skills.
- The health and wellbeing of the child should always be the central tenet of long-term athletic development programs.
- Youth should participate in physical conditioning that helps reduce the risk of injury to ensure their on-going participation in long-term athletic development programs.
- Long-term athletic development programs should provide all youth with a range of training modes to enhance both health- and skill-related components of fitness.
- Practitioners should use relevant monitoring and assessment tools as part of a long-term physical development strategy.
- Practitioners working with youth should systematically progress and individualize training programs for successful long-term athletic development.
- Qualified professionals and sound pedagogical approaches are fundamental to the success of long-term athletic development programs.
It was highlighted by the author “The central tenet of this model is that the health and wellbeing of the child is the holistic focus. In other words, all youth participation in sports, fitness, and physical activity should be deliberately planned to provide a positive physical and psychosocial experience leading to increased skills and abilities, love for the game, and reduced risk of injury.”
I would highly suggest that you click on the link above and have a read of the article. It is one of those articles that any of us who are in the sport performance realm, and working with youth should revisit from time to time, to ensure that we are following sound principles that take into account the holistic approach to LTAD.