Athleticism is the ability to perform athletic movements (run, jump & throw) at optimum speed, with precision, style and grace within the context of your sport. In many ways it is easy to isolate out a component of athletic fitness and focus on the development of that component to the detriment of overall athleticism. As athletic development coaches it behooves us to always keep the big picture at the forefront of our thinking. I think Australian discus thrower Dani Samuels (The youngest women to make the Olympic final) sums it up quite nicely: I think of myself as not a thrower who trains like a thrower, I train like an athlete. I look after my diet, see a nutritionist, do a lot of cross training. It’s not just throw and lift, throw and lift, which is (what) the old-school throwers do. I’m an athlete. Getting to see her train on 07 I can attest to the athleticism she exhibits. This is precisely why I think the term Athletic development is a more accurate term than strength and conditioning. Athletic development is about the integration of all components of athletic development to produce results in the competitive arena, not artificial meaningless measure in isolated activities that have little or no carryover to the actual sport performance.
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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.
RT @GreatestQuotes: Your aspirations are your possibilities. - Samuel Johnson - 4 years ago
Vern Gambetta

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