Canadian Sport for Life - LTAD

A clear path to better sport, greater health, and higher achievement.

Children, youth and adults need to do the right things at the right time to develop in their sport or activity whether they want to be hockey players, dancers, figure skaters or gymnasts. Long-Term Athlete Development (LTAD) describes the things athletes need to be doing at specific ages and stages.

Science, research and decades of experience all point to the same thing: kids and adults will get active, stay active, and even reach the greatest heights of sport achievement if they do the right things at the right times. This is the logic behind the Long-Term Athlete Development model (LTAD).

The seven-stage Canadian model for Long-Term Athlete Development (LTAD) is a training, competition, and recovery program based on developmental age - the maturation level of an individual - rather than chronological age. It is athlete centred, coach driven, and administration, sport science, and sponsor supported. Using LTAD principles, athletes are supported with optimal training and competition programs that consider their biological and training ages in creating plans specific to their development needs.

Canadian Sport for Life Stages of LTAD

LTAD helps Canadian sport to:

  • Identify the current gaps in the sport system and provides guidelines for problem solving,
  • Guide the planning for optimal performance for all stages of athlete development,
  • Provide a framework for full sport system alignment and integration,
  • And is designed on empirical and practical coaching experiences and on scientific principles.

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