The Long Term Athlete Development Journey of Curling


Scientific research has concluded that it takes a minimum of 10 years and 10,000 hours of training for a talented athlete to reach elite levels.

The first 4 stages (Active Start, FUNdamentals, Learning to Train, Training to Train) with their respective approximate ages are generally appropriate for all late specialization sports. In the sport of curling young athletes should participate in many sports to allow the proper development of the basic movement skills. Any age can fastrack through these stages.

The next 2 stages (Training to Compete, Training to Win) are for specialization in the sport of curling.

The final stage is Active for Life and includes all curlers, competitive and recreational.

Everyone has to start somewhere. No matter your age or ability curling is a sport for everyone!

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For everyone and teaches physical literacy and provides a general knowledge of the sport of curling.

Every curler needs to learn the fundamentals of the sport of curling before deciding where they would like to participate. This includes curlers, umpires, coaches and volunteers.


Every athlete needs to train or practice if they wish to improve their skills. This stage assists all level of curlers to be capable of reaching their desired performance level.

Every athlete needs to select a sport specialization. It’s time for athletes to select the sport of curling.

For athletes who indicate that their specialization will be in the sport of curling.

Designed to assist athletes who wish to train to reach the highest level of curling. This area consists of a low percentage of curlers who have the desire, work ethic and ability to reach their optimum goal.

For everyone to ensure physical activity on a regular basis through participation or volunteering.

CurlManitoba Long Term Athlete Development Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is LTAD?

LTAD or(Long Term Athlete Development) was an initiative of Sport Canada, and is being developed by CurlManitoba based on the Sport Canada LTAD directives. It started when Sport Canada took a look at our olympic performance and realized the reason we are not winning as many gold medals as we should be is because of gaps in our sport system at the younger years. We are not getting enough people involved in sport, hence the rise of childhood obesity, and something needs to be done.

The purpose of the LTAD is to allow coaches to provide athletes with the best possible support at each stage of development and inform athletes about the key developmental concepts and practices at each stage in the development pathway.

2. Why do we need LTAD in curling?

Curling has been a leader in attracting and retaining recreation participants in the sport of curling. Competitive athletes, in recent years have worked at achieving higher levels in the sport of curling. This demand has highlighted a need for a systematic approach to developing curling athletes.

LTAD recognizes two distinct streams in curling; the lifetime recreational sport and the elite competitive sport. The LTAD model is designed to support participants in both streams.

The base to all curling is physical literacy and introduction and then streaming to the recreational, competitive or excellence streams.

Every athlete entering the sport of curling will have the potential for a positive, individualized experience no matter what the level of participation or competition aspirations. The appropriate development will be available through the LTAD.

3. What are the advantages/benefits of LTAD in Curling?

LTAD is beneficial in Curling by developing Athletes through age and ability training programs. LTAD focuses on a long term goal process which helps athletes work through the developmental stages. LTAD provides Skilled Coaches who’s focus will be on critical periods of accelerated adaption to training. Implementing this system also provides the parents of Curling with guidelines to understand the stages of the sport. LTAD will help athletes reach their optimal performance.

4. What are the 10 Key factors of LTAD?

The ten key factors of LTAD that ensures that athletes experience optimal development are

1) FUNdamentals

2) Specialization

3) Developmental Age

4) Trainability

5) The Whole Athlete

6) Periodization

7) Calender Planning

8) 10-year rule

9) System aligment and Integration

10) Continuous Improvement

5. What are the 10 “S”s of Training and Performance?

1) Stamina

2) Strength

3) Speed

4) Skill (technical)

5) Suppleness (agility)

6) Structure and Stature (growth and maturation)

7) (P)Sychology (mental skills)

8) Socia Cultural

9) Sustenance

10) Schooling