The Learning Process
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Long Term Athlete
Development (LTAD)

  Physical Skill Development (PSD) requires a systematic process of training
      A basic platform is essential to construct the framework of acquiring more complex fine muscle skill sets.  A training system for competition and recovery based on developmental age or maturity level rather than the chronological age of an individual. 

      The implementation of sport programs that follow a Long Term Athlete Development (LTAD) model will enable coaches to develop individualized programs based upon each individual and take advantage of the critical periods of accelerated adaptation to training.

      It is designed to help athletes develop to their full potential. The LTAD framework is athlete centered, coach driven and supported by administration, sport sci-ence and sponsors. 

      The general LTAD model suggests that athletes will move through 7 stages of development on their way to optimal elite performance.

Athletics Canada LTAD Model
      The Athletics Canada LTAD model is a 9-stage process that takes into account two additional stages related to the late specialization nature of Athletics.

      The additional stages are a ‘Learning to Compete’ stage, and a ‘Winning for a Living’ stage which acknowledge that some elite athletes will have the opportunity to compete professionally. 

      It is important to note that the Active for Life Stage can be entered at any time. The Active for Life Stage provides sports with a guide to ensure that opportunities for continued participation are provided for those who do not wish/are unable to progress through all the Stages. 

      The ages of the entry level for beginners can span many years. Athletics is considered to be a “late entry” sport. Children may show an aptitude for sport at very young ages, but to compete at the elite level requires long term development targeted towards peak performance at physical maturity. 

      It is also desirable to screen children against pre-established criteria as they enter sport. This practice should allow young athletes to progress through the develop-mental stages and stabilize skills.

      Such actions should enhance future performance. As athletes develop coaches will identify the event group and specific event best suited to the talent of each athlete.

      Retention of each individual is essen-tial, as it will increase the opportunity for athletes to attain excellence over time.

     The 9 Stages include:
•    Active Start
•    FUNdamentals (Fundamentals 1)
•    Learning To Train (Fundamentals 2)
•    Training to Train (“Building the Engine”)
•    Learning to Compete (“Challenge of Competition”)
•    Training to Compete (“Heat of the Battle)
•    Learning to Win (“Consistent Performance)
•    Winning for a Living (“Performing when it Counts”)
•    Retainment / Active for Life (“Dealing with Adversity”)


PDF  A Shorter Guide to Long Term Athlete Development  LTAD FRAMEWORK. Long Term Athlete Development (LTAD) is a sports development framework that is based on human growth and development.

Long Term Athlete Development - Athletics Coaches Association The Long Term Athlete Development (LTAD) model is a framework for an optimal training, competition and recovery schedule for each stage of athletic development. Coaches who engage in the model and its practices are more likely to produce athletes who reach their full athletic potential. The LTAD model has been developed based on the research of the Canadian Sport Centres LTAD expert group.

PDF Need for Long Term Development Model

PDF Successful Sports Parenting

PDF Adolescence Stages of Development


The following internet links have been gleaned from personal communications
combined with information from public institutions and athletic organizations/
associations that have a web presence with information concerning team and
individual sports programs:

Training Principles for Athletes
Principles of Learning Sports
Athlete Training Principles
Sports Training for Children
Goals & Objectives for Skating
Sports Training Syllabus
Lesson Planning for Sports
Long Term Athlete Development

PDF  Trainability of Children
PDF  Trainability of Young Athletes
PDF  Writing Objectives

All materials are copy protected. 
The limited use of the materials for education purposes is allowed providing
credit is given for the source of the materials.

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