We Can’t Have Long Term Athlete Development without Short Term Athlete Engagement

Dr. Jean Cote said this:

“If sport was only about skill development…and was not practiced by people who have emotion, and care and are human beings, if they were robots, then you would say yes, just do skill, just do deliberate practice…but the problem is that sport is not only about skill development…and sport specific skill. Sport is about motivation, interest, drive, grit, persistence, and resilience, and those types of subjective skills are very important aspects of elite athletes and long-term sport participation and that is the problem… these thing are harder to measure… so we default to skill, and practicing repetition of backhands…But people are not robots, we have to teach the other qualities that combine motivation and interest. That is what play and diversity of sport will do.”

Did you catch that? All sports are human endeavors. And development is not just about skills. Development of our young athletes MUST include “soft” skills of persistence, performance under pressure, drive, motivation, etc. And without these core abilities, athletes won’t be ultimately successful on the court or field.

The best part of this entire discussion is most parents initially want their kids to do sports to develop the skills of team-work, discipline, persistence, etc.

Read the full article from John O’Sullivan on ChangingtheGameProject.com


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