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Subject: RE: Could the US be better if we identified/singled out top talent at an early age for training?
Jurgis Rudkus wrote:
I just watched a documentary on how China will identify gymnasts with potential at say 6 or 7 years old and immediately send them to national training centers where they work their asses off to become age-cheating Olympic gold medalists.
Obviously I'm not advocating something of the same scale in the US, but what if top runners who showed potential in middle/high school (probably the earlier the better, though puberty has ruined quite a few girls' careers) were paired up with elite coaches who would work with them for as long as necessary? This would provide continuity in coaching style (no rough adjustments from high school---> college), ensure more productive long term development (not as many hard intervals or trying to peak three times a year or whatnot), and gives top talent top coaches at an early age rather than chancing that their track coach isn't just a football assistant looking for an extra stipend.
Look at Rupp's career- he's been with Salazar since high school and has had access to top training tools since 15, has consistently improved, and never had any major injuries. Obviously Rupp is incredibly talented, but think of all the talent that gets passed up because world class coaching isn't available from early on. If America is to become more competitive, we need to work on our pipeline.
There is a slight problem with this. As you said, Rupp is a case example of this, having been trained by an elite-level coach from virtually the moment he began competitive running.
However, there is a VERY limited number of elite coaches, most of whom have athletes that they are working with already.Hit the submit button below if you want us to review the post.
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