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Why Long-Term Athlete Development Is For You

by | Sep 26, 2021

Excellence. Participation. Growth. Why Sports Federations Need an Long-Term Athlete Development.

International sports federations must adapt to the rapid transformation in world sport, including growing athlete autonomy, or risk losing control of the industry” 

Reuters International 

bicycle race

The world of sport has changed. In recent years, the Olympic Games was cancelled – a previously unimaginable idea. Social media, TikTok, Snapchat and a whole host of other technological trends have reshaped the ways that the younger generation connect. Mental health crises have blighted our youth, with computer-based tech pulling youngsters ever farther away from sports and toward less active, couch-based pursuits. 

Covid-19 lockdowns even ended spectator sport – for a time – and it might well do so again. Rival federations have begun to appear, with athletes demanding a greater share of profits and revenue from sports events, challenging the balance of power. Governments are withdrawing funding due to pandemic-related economic crises. These events continue to reshape the landscape of sport and highlight the critical need for sports federations to remain nimble to survive.

The question is – as these hurdles continue to rise – will your federation truly continue to prosper – or even survive?

Developing a Long Term Vision

It’s time for sports federations to commit to a vision that allows long term growth, and a truly dynamic, rapid ability to shift focus – a vision that truly takes into account the needs of its athletes, coaches and officials. A vision that unites coaches and athletes, helping & empowering them to react fast, transform, and engage, no matter what the difficulties.

The key to achieving exactly that?

An LTAD (Long Term Athlete Development Strategy).

female overhead press

What is an LTAD, exactly?

An LTAD – or Long Term Athlete Development Strategy – offers every single coach, athlete, referee & volunteer a roadmap to success. It allows your federation to formalize a uniform, high-quality approach to coaching, where coaches & athletes are all exceptionally clear about how to shine. From the smallest details – such as downloadable training session templates – to the largest – such as developing the most effective multi-level coach certification – an LTAD brings together everybody in your sports world. 

The result? Greater participation. More effective coaching. More committed athletes. And a sport that breaks through the barriers of what it is capable of to change lives on, and off, the field of play. 

From Grandchild to Grandparent

A truly effective LTAD provides an extremely clear blue print as to how an athlete or participant – whether recreational or professional – can engage with the sport at every single stage of life. As a small child splashing in the water, to a grandparent swimming gently to help their arthritis, a sport can bring great joy and health. It is the role of an LTAD to pave the way and make those stages clear. To the young participant who never found a podium win for herself, but who showed coaching ability, an LTAD makes clear to her how she could progress through Levels 1-4 coaching stages and contribute to the sport she loves, in a way that suits her talents. To the promising young athlete, it provides a clear pathway to elite competition. To the small child who loves being active, it provides a way of teaching motor skills and confidence, even if he doesn’t continue with the sport past primary school age. To the teenager struggling with a difficult home life, it is her safe space, and a regular training schedule and club environment that she can rely on to help her through the most difficult period of her life.

woman resting on a kayak in a blue sea

A great LTAD, ultimately, makes clear the role of sport – not only in providing the technical, equipment-focused and logistical support needed to allow the sport to be physically played – but also as a means of boosting mental & emotional health, enabling social interactions, providing a safe space, creating lifelong friendships, role models, confidence and self-identity. 

It also helps your federation safeguard and grow participation – essential to allow federations – and sports – to continue to function. 

The Adrenaline Solutions Solution

We can create your LTAD down to the smallest detail, taking into account who you are as a federation and what matters most to you as a sport. We will help you develop a strategy that engages every single stakeholder – coach, athlete, spectator, official, referee – and allow you to communicate pathways for engagement at every single stage of the life span, in a way that maximizes engagement. No sport is too small, or too big, to develop an LTAD. And we’re ready to create a unique LTAD for your federation, so that you can help your coaches and athletes shine. Reach out if you’d like to hear more!

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