All too often in the past, programmes offered to children in sport are scaled down versions of adult activity. Coaching was conducted in the main without sufficient regard to the principles of child development. Children’s needs in sport are different to the needs of other populations; therefore the coaches of children need to be equipped with specific knowledge, skills and competencies to fulfill the needs of children.
Children want different things from their sport participation and require different approaches given their stage of development both physically and mentally. And by the way, very few children will ever be elite athletes, but it we get it right at this early stage, a higher proportion of them will be equipped with both movement skills and love of activity, to remain active into their adult years and lead a healthy lifestyle. The stakes are high!