Later this week attendees from 11 Olympic sports will meet for the fourth module of the Performance Pathway Programme at Ashridge Business School to explore 'athlete profiling'.
The Performance Pathway Programme (P3), launched by the Performance Pathway Team in May in collaboration with the English Institute of Sport, is designed for managers working in the World Class Programme environment, responsible for Talent Identification, Confirmation and Development of future medallists for 2018, 2020 and beyond.
The two-day experience will build on the topics examined in the 2010/11 Masterclasses - 'Talent Profiling and Confirmation' and 'Tracking and Monitoring Talent Development'. These sessions showcased best practice examples from the RAF, Royal College of Surgeons and European Space Agency exploring how they use profiling to select and then develop expertise in fighter pilots, surgeons and astronauts. P3 Module four, 'Advancing Athlete Profiling in your Sport', will consider the progress made and experiences of sports in this area since then; share the approaches, systems and practices that currently operate within P3 sports; and advance the area identified by sports as requiring the most improvement – psychology and behaviour.
GB Canoeing Performance Director, John Anderson commented:
“GB Canoeing are currently working to further enhance our athlete profile and this is a timely educational module for our sport. The work that we have been doing on profiling in conjunction with the Performance Pathway team is hugely significant. It has, without doubt, sharpened our ability to recruit potential medal-winning talent from the recent testing events held as part of the Girls4Gold campaign. The opportunity for us to learn from, and share with other sports at P3 will help us focus in this expanding area of Athlete Profiling, ultimately allowing us in Challenging Best and becoming the World Number One Canoeing Nation.”
Attendees will hear from Dr James Bell, Head of Psychological Services at Cleveland Browns on his experiences whilst working for the ECB. James will share the reasons behind England’s systematic use of athlete profiling within the development pathway, through case conferencing, to positively influence player development in a complex landscape. The afternoon session will look at one particular element of athlete profiling, psychology and behaviour, and an expert panel will explore theories and discussions points from the group. While some sessions will look at profiling through the lens of psychology and behaviour, the overall aim will be to enhance attendee’s knowledge and confidence to develop a robust and truly holistic athlete profile relevant to each sport.
On day two, having spent significant time researching the use of profiling in high performance environments, Dr. Stewart Laing (English Institute of Sport) will highlight how he has adapted and refined these approaches in his work with Olympic sports. Stewart will propose a tried and tested process to guide attendees through the key steps to developing a comprehensive athlete profile, as well as showcasing a bespoke IT tool to assist data capture, analysis and decision-making. The group will then have the opportunity to reflect on their own athlete profile and identify where further work could be applied.
The aim of this module will be to stimulate new ideas, provide practical examples and solutions, and re-invigorate ongoing work in this critical area of the performance pathway. This module focuses on construction of an athlete profile and is closely linked with our next module in the programme on 26/ 27 March, where the emphasis will be on application of the profile and its use to maximise individual athlete development.
P3 attendee, Simon Mills (Performance Pathway Manager, British Triathlon) stated:
"The P3 programme has been of real benefit to British Triathlon and the next module on 'advancing athlete profiling' is a key focus within our sport at the moment. We have reviewed our medal market and also competition trajectories of successful athletes and used this information to inform our work and our athlete profile. The two days will assist us in moving forward and will make a difference in how we select and develop future athletes."
And Heather Williams (Talent Pathway Manager, GB Canoeing) highlighted:
"The P3 programme has provided a great opportunity for our talent programme and my role as Talent Pathway Manager. The opportunity to learn from others both within sport and importantly external to our environment has been hugely helpful. I am particularly looking forward to the next module on ‘advancing athlete profiling’ as it will be two days dedicated to area we are already focussing on in GB Canoeing’s Performance Pathway. Whilst we all operate in a very dynamic landscape the value of taking time out to review where we are currently at and refine further what we do, enables me to explore practical solutions and creative ways of implementing them which will lead to a more effective and sustainable performance pathway in Canoeing."
P3 attendees 13/14:
GB Archery – Ceriann Davies (Performance Pathway Manager)
GB Boxing – Rob Gibson (Performance Pathway Manager)
GB Canoeing – Heather Williams (Talent Manager)
British Cycling – Ian Yates (Performance Pathway Manager)
British Diving – Julian Bellan (National Development Manager)
GB Rowing – Steve Gunn (START Manager)
British Sailing – Duncan Truswell (Youth Racing Manager)
British Shooting – Steve Seligmann (Talent Pathways Manager)
British Swimming – Ciaran O’Brien (England Talent Manager)
GB Taekwondo – Dean Leak (National Development Manager)
British Triathlon – Simon Mills (Performance Pathway Manager)