LONG-TERM ATHLETE DEVELOPMENT (LTAD)
Gymnastics is the movement of the human body in its purest form. Therefore, gymnastics is considered to be a foundation of all other sports and physical activities. The practice of gymnastics as a child helps develop motor, mental, social and emotional skills, which are fundamental skills present in all aspects of life. Gymnastics is the ideal activity to learn to move your body and to move objects, what is called "physical literacy". Physical literacy allows people of all ages to move with confidence and ease in any environment.
This is an essential skill, where the benefits go far beyond the scope of sports practice. To acquire physical literacy, young people must be active from early childhood. Later, the skills they will have acquired will allow them to practice a variety of physical activities and adopt a healthy and active lifestyle. While a few of these children will become Olympic champions, the majority will lead active lives, continue to have fun doing gymnastics and be well equipped to participate in the sports and activities of their choice.
Gymnastics Canada’s Long-Term Athlete Development (LTAD) reference framework was introduced and adopted in 2007 by all provincial / territorial Associations / Federations. This document is about Long-Term Athlete Development for all participants in gymnastics and is intended for everyone who is part of the Canadian gymnastics system.