These programs are meant for all children: the ones who play on a team, the ones who play in the yard, or the ones who sit in front of the computer. Children and adolescents are not miniature adults, and must be trained differently, due to differences in physical growth and stature. Creating age and developmentally appropriate exercise programs and introducing them into the lives of youngsters will result in positive changes in their long-term sporting success, as well as positive lifestyle adherence.
What Works: fun, teaching, variety, understanding, allowing time for mastery
What Doesn't Work: training, attaching ego, boring repetition, impatience, moving on before mastery, choosing impressive over functional
"When you improve a little each day, eventually big things occur. When you improve conditioning a little each day, eventually you have a big improvement in conditioning. Not tomorrow, not the next day, but eventually a big gain is made. Don't look for the big, quick improvement. Seek small improvements one day at a time. That's the only way it happens-and when it happens, it lasts."
Boys and Girls Ages 6-9
Children will be introduced to a wide variety of non-specific exercise that will aid in the natural development of coordination, which is critical at these ages. The use of 'outcome-based coaching' allows the participants to learn new skills through experimenting and self-discovery, with a focus on play and having fun. They will also be introduced to teamwork with relays and simple games. Children will work on the following areas of coordination: balance, spatial awareness (where you are in space and in relation to objects), kinesthetic differentiation (amount of force required for various tasks), rhythm, and reactivity.
Boys and Girls Ages 10-13
Participants will learn and develop both simple and complex motor skills. Along with 'outcome based coaching,' there is the addition of
'form based coaching,' where more focus is placed on technical skill development and educating participants on specific aspects of exercises. Here, participants transition from a play model of fitness to a more structured version. Some areas of focus will be:
- Force Production and Absorption (jumping, landing, strengthening)
- Angles of Force (acceleration and deceleration)
- Movement Economy (speed, agility, quickness, strength)
High School Strength and Conditioning
Boys and Girls Ages 14-18
This phase can also be called 'Train with Application." There is more focus placed on individual development. Here, training is taken to the next level, building on the basic movement skills developed during the younger years. There is more focus placed on strength
and the technical aspects of training. Whether the goals are improved sports performance, overall health and fitness, or obesity prevention, there is an emphasis placed on proper execution of exercises and drills, and fundamental training habits, so participants can maximize their goals.