It’s getting a lot of attention here in Canada as well. Why? Because it’s a common sense, systematic approach to minor hockey development that puts the emphasis on fun, on the whole person, and recognizes that training to win comes last, not first.
Here is the basic outline:
The Program was implemented after an extensive international study by USAH of educators, child development experts, coaches (from many different sports), physiologists and National Sports Federations.
The ADM goal is to provide a very defined systematic (building block) approach to developing athletes starting from the earliest stages of participation, thus increasing the athlete’s skill, enjoyment and proficiency.
For example the U-8 Developmental Program includes a 20 week fully designed program including practice plans and a player evaluation process, and includes two levels; the (LTP) Learn to Play Mite level and the Advanced Mite level.
The model also sets game limits at all age levels and is designed to help clubs and coaches acquire a good practice to game ratio and enhance skill development before placing too much emphasis on competition.
USA Hockey admits that changing the culture of how hockey is taught is a formable task, but strongly believes the end result will be rewarded in additional player participation, a higher skill level of ALL our participants and coaches… and it will be more FUN for all!