The transition from elite junior track-and-field athlete to successful senior athlete: why some do, why others don't

Hollings, Stephen C., Mallett, Clifford J. and Hume, Patria A. (2014) The transition from elite junior track-and-field athlete to successful senior athlete: why some do, why others don't. International Journal of Sports Science and Coaching, 9 3: 457-471. doi:10.1260/1747-9541.9.3.457


Author Hollings, Stephen C.
Mallett, Clifford J.
Hume, Patria A.
Title The transition from elite junior track-and-field athlete to successful senior athlete: why some do, why others don't
Journal name International Journal of Sports Science and Coaching   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1747-9541
2048-397X
Publication date 2014-06
Year available 2014
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1260/1747-9541.9.3.457
Open Access Status
Volume 9
Issue 3
Start page 457
End page 471
Total pages 15
Place of publication Hockley, Essex, United Kingdom
Publisher Multi-Science Publishing
Collection year 2015
Language eng
Abstract Guiding athletes to become senior international athletes is consistent with the brief of talent development programmes. The transition from junior to senior athlete might be viewed as a normative transition. Nevertheless, this transition is likely to be a complex process and some understanding of that complexity is necessary to inform those responsible for developing talent. This study aimed to determine why some elite junior athletes make the transition to become successful senior athletes, while others of similar ability did not. Five male and six female New Zealand athletes who made a final for their event at a World Junior Athletics Championships (WJC) between 1992 and 2006 were interviewed. Five athletes subsequently went on to win a medal or make the final of their event at an Olympic Games or World Athletics Championships or win a medal at a Commonwealth Games, while the other six continued in the sport for six to ten years as a senior athlete but did not go on to represent New Zealand internationally at the senior track-and-field international level. The data were examined using hierarchical content analysis. Athletes who progressed to become successful senior athletes displayed: i) a significant commitment to a clearly defined and realistic goal; ii) achieved early international success at the senior grade; and iii) had a single dominant identity and key strength. The athletes who did not go on to be a senior international athlete were characterised as having: i) competing demands and tensions in their social, academic/career lives, and ii) a lack of progression.
Keyword Transitions in sport
Track-and-field athletics
Work-life balance
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2015 Collection
School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences Publications
 
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