The Athlete Focused Academy is a performance sport programme aimed at aspiring youth athletes to help them develop both physically and psychologically for their sporting endeavours and their academic and work lives.



Athlete Focused brings together an experienced group of practitioners including sports scientists, strength and conditioning coaches, physiotherapists and mental performance coaches.



These experts include PhD graduates, Masters level scientists and coaches who have worked with Olympic, Paralympic, Commonwealth and Professional athletes. Their knowledge of youth athlete development is vast having worked with youth international athletes and squads across Scotland and the UK. The Academy is a key area for Athlete Focused and one which we are extremely excited to introduce to you. 





your goals!

Why Join?


Professional sport has never been as enticing for young athletes. The rewards for doing well in sport can result in experiences which cannot be bought. Training well from an early age can help get ahead of the opposition and set an athlete up for a long and successful career. Training inappropriately can have the opposite effect.


The current sporting environment has brought about a rise in early sport specialisation. Choosing or being forced to select one sport from a young age has been shown to have detrimental effects for athletes such as decreased movement skills, increased asymmetries and a lack of adaptability leading to increased risk of injuries, overtraining and leaving sport altogether.


Training amongst likeminded, ambitious peers and with other athletes of similar maturity, from different sports can help to combat this. As such one of the key tenets of the Athlete Focused Academy is its multi-sport, bio banded sessions.









Not Just Sport


Further to the physical development of athletes the Athlete Focused Academy looks to help nurture and develop the psychological skills of each individual. This may be to teach goal setting or basic psychological skills of imagery and cueing but also life skills such as discipline and teamwork.


We believe that sport is the perfect environment to learn these skills which can be extremely important in later life. It is through training and competing an individual can learn these skills and test them under pressure. As such we put a large emphasis on this side of performance from a young age.



Athlete Focused’s ethos is to Develop The Individual and Develop the Athlete - The Academy is the epitome of this approach and aims to help every young person reach their personal and sporting goals.










Our Training Process



Athletes will be assessed regularly to predict their current maturation status so that they can be placed within biological age groups rather than chronological age groups.


Known  as 'Bio Banding' this method of athlete grouping looks at how physically developed a person is rather than their age.


Bio Banding helps reduce the potential for over training and injury, makes training more specific and increases peer training motivation (Cumming et al, 2017).


Completing training in Bio Bands as well as comepting at their chronological age allows youth athletes to experience competition with people of similar size enhancing their development.




Multi Sport

Early specialisation has been shown to be linked to increased injury (1), decreased skill development (2) and reduced psychosocial development due issues such as social isolation (3).


Continuing to train in other sports and with people from a variety of sports can help to nullify these issues and help to create a more rounded, successful athlete. 


In The Academy athletes will train with people who compete in other sports. The skills taught will hep every athlete test themselves in areas which their sport wouldn't normally. 


Challenging athletes to continue to learn new skills helps with brain and neuromuscular development. 


Injury Prevention

An individual programme is provided to address the limitations in the physical screening, to further the strengths which have been highlighted and the individual and sport injury risks identified.


This process is underpinned by the Bio Band that each young athlete is currently in utilising the Youth Development Model as proposed in the scientific literature (Lloyd and Oliver, 2012).


The YDM looks at every physical competency (speed, agility, mobility, etc) and how well they can be improved at each maturation stage. For instance, prior to puberty young athletes improve due to changes in their central nervous system. As such training is more likely to be effective if it is focused on areas such as fundamental movements, speed and agility.







At Athlete Focused it is believed that the path to each goal and outcome will be different for every individual. A one-stop exercise prescription pathway is discouraged and instead a problem solving, outcome based approach is preferred.


Each skill can be learnt in a variety of ways – the more innovative the better – it can then be repeated in various scenarios with various external cues and changing environments. By doing this and continuing to challenge the skill once it has been in grained it is hoped that it will be automatic and as such will be repeated in the chaotic sporting environment.


This approach and our Bio Banding approach to physical performance means that our youth athletes are given the best chance to learn and develop, reducing the potential for injuries and improving current and adult performance.








The Academy Information Booklet
Athlete Focused Academy Info Booklet.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [941.1 KB]

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