The problem with the pyramid: Why most models of talent development are flawed

Richard Bailey*, David Collins

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract / Description of output

This chapter examines the relationship between elite sport and sport-for-all with a focus on supposed trickle down effects from the former to the latter. At the heart of the Standard Model of Talent Development (SMTD) is a presumption that it takes a considerable amount of time and energy to achieve high performance in a specific domain. According to Regnier et al., the underlying method is to provide space and equipment for a number of athletes, let them practice for 10 years, and then skim the cream from the top. There is an increasing acceptance among sport scientists and coaches that performance in all forms of sport necessarily involves the development of a range of skills and abilities. Implicit within the SMTD is a conception of development and performance in physical activities as linear and predictable. Many commentators have suggested that the SMTD has the character of a Darwinian process of selective retention.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationElite Sport and Sport-for-All
Subtitle of host publicationBridging the Two Cultures?
PublisherTaylor and Francis Inc.
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9781317587972
ISBN (Print)9781138821903
Publication statusPublished - 11 Aug 2015


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