Friday, 15 September 2017

The top reasons participants like the Elite Academy System.

    1.) Each session focusses on a single skill.
    Each sport has a set of basic skills.  Each session is developed to teach, develop and challenge individuals to take their ability in that skill to the next level.

    2.) The coach is selected based on their expertise of the skill be taught.
    Saskatchewan has many excellent coaches and the Academy identifies these coaches.  The elite coaches all have one skill that they are the best at coaching and this is the skill that the academy will hire them to instruct.

    3.) The variety of coaches makes the system stronger.
    The academy’s strength is not designed around a single coach it is strong because it is a community of coaches who bring their best skill instruction and share it with athletes.  The time commitment for the selected coaches is a single session in a cycle which makes it much easier to get a commitment from these excellent elite coaches who are busy.

    4.) The Academy does not require participants to be at every session
    Athletes should not have to choose a single sport at their young age.  Skill development in any sport is transferable which is the justification for flexibility behind the Academy’s design.  Academy participants are able to select the sessions they can attend but also allow them to prioritize their time for other important aspects of their lives.

    5.) You pay only for the sessions you attend.
    The Academy flexibility requires the athletes to select and register for the sessions they plan to attend.  If life, illness or other aspects of our busy lives do not allow the athletes to attend they will not be charged for the session.  It is important that the academy is informed as soon as it is known that the athlete will not attend but they should not be required to pay for a service that they did not receive.  There is a balance between flexibility and the need to know the number of attending athletes for planning purposes.  This policy is reviewed often but flexibility is a key.

    6.) Many athletes today only practice skills in an organized training session.
    For athletes to become elite they must be willing to take ownership of their own skill development.  They have to practice skill outside of organized practice time with coaches.  The sessions use individual skill training which the athletes can then use on their own with out a coach to further their development.

    7.) The coaching approach is individual skill training allowing different skill level participants to attend the same session

    The mixing of beginners with elite athletes all level to benefit from this mix.  The beginners can see the skills of the more advanced while the advanced athletes can revisit the basic foundation of each skill allowing them to clean up the bad habits they might have developed.  The skill of the selected coaches will be shown as they set drills which progressively and creatively allow each individual to challenge their own ability.

    8.) The ratio of coach-to-athlete is one coach to 10 athletes.

    The individualized approach to skill training requires the ratio is kept lower,  the 10 to 1 ration is the guideline.  All attempts will be made to stick to this ratio.  However, sometimes due to the flexibility of the system it is not an exact science.  A higher ratio would allow the Academy to offer sessions at a cheaper price but not allow the individualize skill training which is currently the focus.

    9.) Athletes are expected to bring their own ball to sessions.
    Serious athletes need to have the ball of the sport in which they are trying to develop skills.  An organized planned session is only one aspect of skill development.  A bigger part of skill development is an athlete on their own working on skills and drills that they have tried at the academy sessions.  This homework is the only route to elite.  Coaches can only show you the way, you have to put in the time and reps.

    10.) The Academy is non-political, it is designed to support school, club and association teams.  It will never select teams to compete, it develops individual skills.
    School teams, club teams and association teams all have their approach towards the selection of the athletes who are good enough to make their teams.  The Academy does not select teams, it assist the athletes through individual skill training to give them a better chance of making those teams.  The Academy does not want to be involved in the politics of the sport it just wants to train individuals in skills. 

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