How Athletes Should Progress

From a young age, it is important that athletes follow a multilateral training program that focuses on overall development that will lead to more successful performances at a later stage. Early specialisation is discouraged. Specialisation can lead to a narrow development of muscles and systems, overtraining and overuse injuries, boredom and burnout and training for the wrong event. Any one of, or a combination of these things can cause a person to drop out of the sport early.

A multilateral development will lead to slower performance improvement but a longer athletic life. Specialisation will generally take place after athletes have achieved a solid foundation and when they have the desire to specialise in a particular sport or event.  (Tudor O Bompa, 2000, ‘Total Training for Young champions’)

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