Youth development using LTAD

Discussion in 'Player Development' started by Coach Dennis, Mar 25, 2013.

  1. Coach Dennis Moderator

    Coaches, I am working on a plan detailing youth development using LTAD. Currently my idea is to use the LTAD as a framework, define certain skill sets needed for each age group and make goals from the defined skill sets. (Those of you not familiar with the LTAD, let me know, I would be more than happy to inform you)

    I am also thinking of using an accomplishment chart (I have no clue how to call it otherwise). Based on certain drills you can chart the individual progress of each player. Not by putting scores, but just giving out a stamp or something to denote a certain skill has been mastered using settings for each age group.

    For example, a U12 player can get a stamp if he/she makes 5 consecutive lay-ups with the strong hand.

    This serves multiple purposes: 1) it motivates the player to get more stamps (and with that it enhances player development); 2) if the U12 player moves to U14 a detailed record of the skill set for each player is available for the new coach; 3) knowing what to teach and what to focus on will make it much easier to make a season plan for a particular group.

    There are some drawbacks as well, but none major to a player that starts playing basketball at the age of 15. This player will be put in a U16 team which might also contain players that have been playing since the age of 11. These players obviously have a huge advantage. Where do you start charting the new player? I think ideally you would follow the same skill set as the other players, but this makes for a very long list for the new player. Then again, some things might be checked off in the first week of practice whereas other, say U12 skills, will take a bit longer.

    Probably this concept is not new and I wonder if any of you have been in contact with this concept. I would love to hear experiences or see examples of such a program.
  2. CodyJ Member

    I'm really not familiar with LTAD; but I do like the idea of an accomplishment chart. For better or worse, the video game generation is conditioned to respond to in game achievements or in this case LTAD achievements. Maybe enhance the achievements with clever names for them...
  3. Coach Dennis Moderator

    The LTAD is short for Long Term Athlete Development. An introduction to the LTAD can be found here. The Canadians have made documents available for the LTAD on their website. LTAD since then has found its way to numerous countries, not only in basketball but also in other sports.

    The "Cross Over: The New Model of Youth Basketball Development", by Brian McCormick, gives even more specific information.

    That is exactly the idea behind the accomplishment charts. Again, this idea is not new, it has been performed at many other sports (swimming) and even at kindergarten and primary schools (even when I was young, back in the seventies).
  4. CodyJ Member

    Thanks for the links. Very interesting. It'd probably be tough to implement and even tougher to stick to. It does remind me of a story on Kevin Durant, where at an earlier age learning basketball, he complained and was ready to quit, because his basketball training didn't included enough basketball. I think it turned out alright for him. Whoever was training him at an earlier stage definitely had his long term goals in mind.
  5. Coach Dennis Moderator

    The reason that it is tough to implement is that it scares a lot of Peak by Friday coaches, e.g. coaches concerned with wins and not with player development. These are most likely the same coaches who put the 14 y/o tall kid underneath the basket and told him all he should do is rebound or catch the ball and shoot.

    At the age of 18 this kid isn't the tallest one on the team anymore, and basically has a tough time scoring underneath the basket because all his shots are blocked. What else can he do? The answer: nothing. Because of his former coach, only interested in winning games and therefore limiting the individual development of the player, rendered him almost useless in the game of basketball and effectively destroying his career. (slightly exaggerated, I know if people truly want to change and learn more they can do so during the summer period. I have seen this before, but it takes a lot of willpower and effort to do so).

    Back to your example, Kevin Durant. With his size he has major dribbling skills enabling him to finish of the break. It is not the size that makes him unstoppable but the package (e.g. skill set) he possesses.
  6. CodyJ Member

    Coach Dennis,

    I agree with everything you are saying. I was working on a Daily Dozen of drills for the off-season and I was going to divide up the drills based on size. After further thought, and based on information you provided; I'm going to develop one Daily Dozen. Everyone is going to work on their drop step and everyone is going to work on their dribbling skills. Thanks for the advice.

    plavitch and Coach Dennis like this.
  7. plavitch Active Member

    @Coach Dennis
    Here is an interesting paper that questions the idea of "windows of opportunity" and the lack of individualization in LTAD. I think your idea of an individual accomplishment chart is an excellent way to overcome the second problem mentioned.
  8. mvcbruce Active Member

    plavitch, thanks for the "interesting paper". I read every page . . . and a couple of tylenol's later, I understand what they are saying.
    The LTAD model sorts things into age groups which doesn't allow "individualization" or the ability of one athlete to move ahead in their growth. However, we often see parents putting their 12 year old son/daughter on a U14 summer team, because that is the perceived level they see their child (though school teams usually shy away from this model).

    The Point of my response here is this . . . The Read & React is the perfect offense for age-related progression of athleticism. Once kids know the Foundation Layers", they may "play with", "compete with", and "develop with" older and perhaps more talented players. Basic Layer 1 players can be on the court with players executing "Enhancement Layer" skills. That is really what I love the Read & React for . . . the ability for a freshman to be on the floor with a senior at the same-time.

    Anyway, thanks for the mind-numbing article. It's good to read scientific research (once-in-a-while) in relationship to what we are trying to accomplish on the floor. We coaches often work via "instincts" and it's good to see scientific research refute it, support it, or at least lead us in a direction that betters our sport.
  9. Coach Dennis Moderator

    Thanks for the paper plavitch. I think we need to remember that the LTAD is not the solution, but merely a framework that can be used to take specific things from. Since it isn't a one stop solution the things you take from the LTAD needs to be remodeled to your situation.

    @mvcbruce: I agree, the R&R framework (again, remodeled to your situation) is perfectly suited for dealing with different skill sets within a team. However, there are probably other offenses as well that fit the bill. On the offensive side, especially during games, the R&R solves the problem of player with a different skill set on the floor, allowing each of them to play to their current skills.
  10. mvcbruce Active Member

    Coach, did you ever complete your "Accomplishment Chart"?
  11. Coach Dennis Moderator

    No, this never really got off the ground. However, this is still something I would like to work on. What I have found is that I work best with other coaches while developing these things. So, with that being said: are you willing to work with me on this? I'll bet between the two of us we can come up with some great stuff worth sharing.

    If so, let me know at coach[at]
  12. NigelCarpay Member

    We have a matrix at the club I coach at that includes most basketball skills, age related as to what we want them to be good at. It sounds like that kind of thing is what you are looking for as a start to this chart.

Share This Page