If you knew the rate of your athletic development, would you change a thing?
Chronologically, males and females respond to training differently and therefore develop physical, mental, cognitive and emotional skillsets at different rates.
For athletes and parents alike, the goal is to determine the Peak Height Velocity (PHV) of each athlete and increase training intensity when this critical moment is present. In our industry, the PHV is the stage of athletic development when the central nervous system (CNS) is firing on all cylinders and the athlete is experiencing rapid athletic maturation.
Perhaps the only development pattern that males and females have in common is the first four years of life. From an athletic standpoint, the only absolute measure of physical ability will be establishing dexterity. Aside from the common urge to play, we don’t have much data to support athletic development. Promoting episodes of "play," both solo and communal, is an opportunity for a child to go to "work." This is their time to establish mental recall, cognitive foresight and emotional awareness. Although seemingly insignificant at the time, this is a crucial period of young athletes’ lives in which they establish their willingness to lead or be led.