In today’s world of quick fixes and instant results I am seeing more and more that that there clearly are three problems that we face:
Early Specialization – The feeling is that if the athlete is not in their sport before high school they will have no chance of success later on. That is probably true in the so-called early development sport like diving and gymnastics, but it is certainly not true of other sports. The broader the base of multifaceted athletic development the greater the potential for higher achievement later on in the athletes career. Certainly statistics and experience prove this.
One Sided (Biased) Training – Training just for speed or just for strength will ultimately limit the ability to develop those qualities to the highest levels. All motor qualities are highly interdependent; therefore all qualities must be trained at all times. They must be trained proportionally depending on the developmental level and the time of year.
Poor foundation in movement skills – This relates to the first point because kids are pushed to specialize early. They never are able to acquire the movement skills that are developed through free play. The lack of physical education in the schools has contributed to this. Specific sport skills are based on sound movement skills. Without a foundation of good movement skills the ability to develop specific sport skill will be limited. I have found that working with elite athletes today that I must start each workout with 10 to 15 minutes of PE class because they are so deficient in foundational motor skills. This is also the reason for the higher incidence of injuries we are seeing in sport today. They can’t seem to get out of their own way!

In future blogs I will talk about solutions.

Vern Gambetta

Vern Gambetta

Director at Gambetta Sports Training Systems
Vern is the Director of Gambetta Sports Training Systems. He has been the a conditioning coach for several MLS teams as well as the conditioning consultant to the US Men's World Cup Soccer team. Vern is the former Director of Conditioning for the Chicago White Sox and New York Mets. He has lectured and conducted clinics in Canada, Japan, Australia and Europe and has authored six books and over one hundred articles related to coaching and sport performance in a variety of sports. He has a BA in teaching with a coaching minor and an MA in Education with an emphasis in physical education from Stanford University.
Vern Gambetta


Athletic Development Coach & Consultant. Founder of GAIN Network. Proud dad. Love to read everything.
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Vern Gambetta

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