In recent years, youth strength training and models of athletic development have become hot topics thanks in part to a shift in youth sports from leisure activities to year-round commitments. In order for strength and conditioning professionals to help the athletes of tomorrow achieve their performance and fitness goals, it’s imperative to develop safe, effective, and balanced programming for the youth of today.
Long-term athletic development (LTAD) is not merely a blueprint for the aspiring elite athlete; it’s an approach to physical activity and development for children and adolescents of all ages and athletic abilities. The backbone of LTAD is to ensure a safe progression of proper movement, physical literacy, adequate motor skills, and foundational muscular strength as a child grows and physically matures. LTAD addresses youth strength and conditioning, early sport specialization, overtraining, and injury prevention.
With the resources on this page, we hope to educate strength and conditioning professionals, coaches, and parents on the importance of long term athletic development, why youth resistance training should be utilized, and the necessity for fostering a safe path to life-long health in individuals and athletes of all ages.
Thank you to the authors of the LTAD Position Statement who gave freely of their time and expertise to develop a thorough research-based document on the importance of long-term athletic development:”