The Long Term Rugby Development model (LTRD) provides an integrated framework to facilitate the development of rugby players at all levels of participation and experience. It outlines a philosophy of sound practice and long-term participation, performance and enjoyment of the Rugby.
The LTRD that was published after an extensive process of discussion and consultation between world-renowned developmental expert Dr. Istvan Balyi and the Rugby Canada LTRD Planning Committee. The collective intention is to provide the best possible rugby experience for all participants involved in rugby across Canada. The LTRD framework will help to ensure that the experience of training and playing the game is always appropriate for the developmental stage of the player involved.
The model is athlete-centred. This means that the specific characteristics pertaining to each stage are based on the particular capacities of players at that stage of development.
The model has five player capacities: Technical, Tactical, Physical, Mental and Lifestyle. These player capacities provide the compass by which Rugby Ontario designs and promotes rugby coaching and playing at all levels. All coaches should be appropriately trained and qualified to work with players at each stage in the model that they coach.
This model is Long-Term. The reality is there are no short-cuts in developing competencies to levels of excellence. A widely accepted belief is that it takes ten years or 10,000 hours of proper coaching to produce a world-class athlete or player.
This model is Collectively Aligned. This means that all participants who contribute to the development and experience of players cooperate, ensuring that all aspects of player development are aligned.
The model is not intended to be a production line of world-class players but rather an integrated series of stages (based on scientific principles and participant experience) to maximise the potential of each player according to their own ability and ambition. Ultimately of course, the successful establishment and maintenance of a long-term program of development will be essential to that small number of players with the talent and aspiration to become elite performers.
The effectiveness of the LTRD will be evidenced by its integration into all of the Rugby Ontario structures and systems, and by the rewarding experiences of players, coaches, parents, referees, supporters and administrators of the game.
The LTRD is an eight-staged model, servicing participants from Community to Country. These stages are outlined below.