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Athlete Development


Squad Coaching is based on the framework of 'Long Term Athlete Development' (LTAD).


Scientific research has shown that it takes at least 10 years, or 10,000 hours, for talented athletes to achieve sporting excellence.


There are two ways in which young swimmers can improve their performance:


  • Training

  • Growth & development


LTAD is about adopting an athlete-centred approach aimed at achieving optimal training, competition and recovery throughout an athlete’s career, particularly in relation to the important growth and development years of a young person’s life.


A number of scientists have reported that there are critical periods in the life of a young person in which the effects of training can be maximised. This has led to the notion that young people should be exposed to specific types of training during periods of rapid growth and that the types of training should change according to individual patterns of growth.


The five LTAD stages:


FUNdamental - basic movement literacy (female 5-8yrs, male 6-9yrs)


SwimSkills - building technique (female 8-11yrs, male 9-12yrs)


Training to train - building the engine (female 11-16 years, male 12-15yrs)


Training to compete - optimising the engine (female 14-16yrs, male 15-18yrs)


Training to win - maximising the engine (female 16+yrs, male 18+yrs)

St Felix School, Halesworth Road, Southwold, Suffolk, IP18 6SD

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