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"LTAD helps make sport coaches better"


The Coaches Association of BC supports and endorses the Canadian Sport for Life movement. Through programs such as NCCP Fundamental Movement Skills, we are supporting our coaches to ensure athletes develop physical literacy on their path to being active for life. 

Learn About Canadian Sport for Life

Canadian Sport for Life (CS4L) is a movement to improve the quality of sport and physical activity in Canada through improved athlete training and better integration between all stakeholders in the sport system, including sport organizations, education, recreation and health. A key feature of CS4L is Long-Term Athlete Development (LTAD), a developmental pathway whereby athletes follow optimal training, competition, and recovery regimens from childhood through all phases of adulthood.

CS4L has been gathering momentum since the publication of the 2005 resource paper Canadian Sport for Life. Since 2005, every national sport organization in Canada has developed sport-specific LTAD guidelnes for their athletes. Further work has been done by provincial organizations and governmental groups and agencies to promote CS4L in their jurisdictions.

The vision behind CS4l is to reshape how we support sport and train athletes at all levels in Canada - from Children to adults, from towns to cities, from provinces and regions through to the National level. In realizing this vision, we aim to keep more Canadians active for life with recreational sport and physical activity, and at the same time help Canadians in all sports win more medals internationally.


The Coaching Association of Canada has worked to align the National Coaching Certification Program (NCCP) and Long Term Athlete Development (LTAD). The following diagram shows the interaction between the two systems, taking into note the important moving scale of training age compared to chronological age. 

For more information about the integration of NCCP and LTAD, see the CAC Presentation and Stories from the Front - NCCP and LTAD. The following presentation was done at the 2012 Canadian Sport for Life conference, held in Ottawa, Ontario: Alignment and Integration: CS4L and the NCCP.

Ten Key Factors

Long-Term Athlete Development (LTAD) is based on sport research, coaching best practices, and scienific principles. LTAD expresses these principles, research, and practices as 10 Key Factors essential to athlete development. 

To optimize the development of our athletes, we need to take advantage of the best sport science and best pratices in coaching and training. Long-Term Athlete Development (LTAD) does this by codifying important elements of sport science and coaching practices into the 10 Key Factors of LTAD:

  1. 10-Year Rule
  2. FUNdamentals
  3. Specialization
  4. Developmental Age
  5. Trainability
  6. Physical, Mental, Cognitive and Emotional Development
  7. Periodization
  8. Competition Planning
  9. System Alignment and Integration
  10. Continuous Improvement

Along with sport science and coaching, the 10 key Factors include broader principles behind the way we organize and manage sport. For example, competition scheduling to optimize athlete development, organizational alignment of different groups and agencies that make up the "sport system", and the philosophy of Continuour Improvement so we always work to make our science, coaching, and system of athlete development better.