One of the most vast and influential misconceptions in the area of athletic development is the idea that kids that develop early (perform above the level of their peers) will inevitably reach a higher level of performance than their peers in the end. The feeling is that if they are this good now, and continue to develop at the same rate, they’ll be exponentially better in the future. It’s the “develop at the same rate” assumption that is inherently flawed.
Developing early means very little for peak development. In fact, it can often hamper an athlete’s long-term potential for physical (e.g. bigger/faster players don’t need to work on skills as much because they can find/create open ice with their size and speed) and psychological reasons (e.g. athletes don’t develop a sense of needing to outwork the competition because they’re already ahead of the curve). I touched on this quite a bit in a previous article: A Letter to Parents of Undersized Hockey Players
I came across another article on this topic from Dr. Kwame Brown from “Move Theory” that I wanted to share with you. Take a few minutes to read the article, and then read Dr. Brown’s story on his “Meet Kwame” page.
To your success,
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Kevin has rapidly established himself as a leader in the field of physical preparation and sports science for ice hockey. He is currently the Head Performance Coach for the Boston Bruins, where he oversees all aspects of designing and implementing the team’s performance training program, as well as monitoring the players’ performance, workload and recovery. Prior to Boston, Kevin spent 2 years as an Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach for the San Jose Sharks after serving as the Director of Performance at Endeavor Sports Performance in Pitman, NJ. He also spent 5 years as a Strength and Conditioning Coach with USA Hockey’s Women’s Olympic Hockey Team, and has been an invited speaker at conferences hosted by the NHL, NSCA, and USA Hockey.