Performance Pathways

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Performance Pyramid

FOUNDATION LEVEL: grass roots level associated wit introducing young children to sport and ecouraging learning e.g. TOP sport and Dragon Sport

PARTICIPATION: sport undertaken for fun and enjoyment with basic competence - however many able people participate here for health, fun and fitness

COMPETITION: knows as performance level - more structured form of competitive sport

ELITE SPORT: performers at the highest possible level e.g. national and international

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UK Sport

responsible for management of elite sport; providing opportunities and funding - goals of

  • supporting and delivering success at olympics and paralympics
  • world class performance programmes (funds elite athletes)

world class development programmes: designed to fund and support athletes to maximise success

  • world class talent: indentifies potential
  • world class development: assiting talented atheltes 
  • world class podium: supporting athletes with sorting success

many recieve funing either subsistence costs or sports cost

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Sport England

used for participation/competition level;

  • support and provide access to pathways to allow development
  • promote community support for an active nation
  • supporting community provisions and developments
  • helps NGBs develop effective competition framework

county sports partnerships and tool kits: increase promotion to specific areas to increase participation levels by providing more accessible and affordable recreation

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Youth Sport Trust

supports participation at foundation and grass roots level - responsible for involving young people in sport;

TOP PROGRAMMES: sporting pathways for children

SPORT COLLEGES: secondary schools with specalist status in sport

SCHOOL SPORT PARTNERSHIPS: groups of schools working together to develop PE

PESSCL: enhancing take up of sport amongst 5-16 years old  (joint initative with gov. and YST) aims:

  • 85% of school age children involved in quality PE 2 hours a week by 2008
  • 4 hours by 2010

PESSCL initative has many strands eg. step into sportgifted and talented and national competitions frameworks

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main two are club and education:

CLUB: local/junior club --> senior club --> elite club

SCHOOL:  school --> district --> county --> regional --> national team

  • school sport associations e.g. english school football association
  • inter house and interform sport
  • sports day
  • swimming galas

school sport is criticised as it only caters for a small percentage of schools population (5%)

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begun to provide opportunities for all levels of performance e.g. bath has catered for elite atheltes by allowing them to train in conjunction with academic courses

  • sport specific degrees
  • university competitions - UAU and BUSA
  • offered scholarships and bursaries

mass participation:

  • inter - mural sport for mass participation
  • extensive range of sports facilities
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National Framework - Change

national framework is a joint policy from gov. and sporting agencies - identifies 20 priority sports and 10 development sports -

main aim to change culture fo sport to increase participation

7 drivers of change:

  • ageing population
  • time pressures
  • well being and obesity
  • levels of investment
  • utlising education
  • variations in access
  • volunteers and proffesionals 
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National Framework - Settings and Policies

5 setting for change:

  • home
  • community
  • workplace
  • higher and further education
  • innovation and delivery

6 policy areas:

  • promotion and marketing
  • legislation and regulatory change
  • quality acrediation and improvements
  • structures and partnerships
  • innovation and delivery
  • strategic planning and evidence
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National Framework - Outcomes

7 main outcomes:

  • increasing participation
  • improving performance levels
  • widening access
  • imporving health and well being
  • creating stronger and safer communities
  • improving education
  • benefiting economy 

national framework has ensured pathways have been set up for each of the sports to allow progression from grass roots to elite level

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Relay Race

the pathway and sporting agencies can be seen as a relay race;

  • YST begins it to deliver sport at grass roots through encouraging young children to get active
  • Sport England: sustains the interest n sport and attempts to re-engage those who have dropped out e.g. post school gap
  • UK Sport: who carters for elite athletes

Youth sport trust à Sport England à UK Sport

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Talent ID

process of identifying sporting potential in young people and then providing suportive pathways to allow them to fullfill this talent

works best in closed loop sports e.g. rowing as physical attributes have strong correlation to success unlike open loop sports where physical characteristics are not as important as decision making and skills etc.

East Germany credited as first nation for this talent ID

  • used sport as a shop window to promote communist political system
  • Talent ID used to test 7 year olds for potential and scores analysed by national federations
  • high scores on biometric and sporting tests trained locally several days a week
  • those who developed transfered to boarding schools aged 10
  • boarding schools trained 6 hours a day, 6 days a week
  • linked to elite clubs and based at high performance centres - good facilties and coaching

australia now follows same or similar procedure to poor olympic performance 2000 and 1974

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Talent Development

number of schemes and programmes for talent development:

SPORTS GIANTS: for rowing

  • women over 180cm and men over 190cm
  • invited to initial talent screening 
  • successful fast tracked to olympic development 


  • online system for 11-17 year olds to find suitability for 150+ sports
  • signposts clubs and pathways for suitable choices


  • run by YST for 14-17 year olds
  • offers training and support from top class athletes for those with sporting potential 
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Talent Development


  • annual olympic style event funded by governmnet and lottery
  • gives young people expereince of championships 
  • e.g. sainsburys school games

TASS: talented athlete scholarship scheme 

  • gov funded programme to support elite athletes who also follow academic study programmes
  • provide access to faciltites
  • access to support


  • charities providing talented performers with direct funding to help them train and prepare for sport
  • 12-18 and nominated by ngbs
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Talent Development

AASE: apprenticeship in sporting excellence

  • allows potential proffessionals to combine education,training anf sport specific qualifications
  • apprecties train and play for pro clubs
  • 10 hours a week study 
  • funded by sport governing bodies
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