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Bowler Development

Sport for Life (S4L) is a movement to improve sport and physical activity, so more Canadians will get quality training, more will continue participating, and more will remain active for life.

Long Term Athlete Development (LTAD) is a multi-stage pathway which guides an individual’s development and experience in sport. Bowls Canada Boulingrin has adopted LTAD and modified it to include an eight-stage model encompassing every element of bowls, with the athlete/participant as the central focus. The model encourages and supports the development of skills, knowledge and competition at a rate that suits the athlete/participant. The priority of LTAD is quality sport and to encourage life-long participation and involvement. To learn more about each development stage, click on the image to the right. To read the full report on Bowls Long-term Athlete Development, click here.

 

Why LTAD?

Implementing the LTAD framework will help Bowls Canada to create a fun, strong and healthy bowls community for years to come. LTAD will allow bowlers, clubs and coaches to recognize developmental needs of all bowlers regardless of age and ability, develop and maximize player potential and encourage participants to stay involved for life. Bowlers are more likely to stick with the sport if they experience enjoyment and a proper level of competition for their skill level. With the LTAD framework implemented we will see MORE people of all ages and abilities trying bowls and, INCREASED numbers of clubs retaining and growing their membership over time.

 

 

Learn to Bowl: The New Bowler

Learn to Bowl is the first introductory stage of bowls specific development. This stage is meant to instil the love of the game and teach the basic fundamentals of bowls to new participants (any age). There is an emphasis on getting participants to roll bowls, develop basic technical skills and achieve enough success to stay with the sport. At this point, participants are social bowlers, enjoying social aspects of practicing, and playing a game with peers while being active. After demonstrating the basic skills, bowlers will decide which path to take: Bowls for Life or Train to Play.

 

Skill Performance Indicators: These benchmarks are based on practice/training drills and the percentages, which may seem high, are accurate – bear in mind that game standards/percentages will be considerably lower. For full details, please visit https://www.bowlscanada.com/downloads/ltad/Bowls-LTAD_v.6.pdf.

 

Indicator Beginning of the Stage Middle of the Stage End of the Stage
Controlling the length of the jack

23 metres 50% of the time and in play

23 metres 75% of the time and in play

23 metres 100% of the time and in play

Bowling to the centre line

Within 1 metre of the centre line 50%

Within 90 cm of the centre line 60% of the time

Within 80 cm of the centre line 70% of the time

Controlling the length of the bowl

Within 3 metres of the jack 50% of the time

Within 3 metres of the jack 60% of the time

Within 3 metres of the jack 70% of the time

Psychological

Introduced to goal setting and visualization

Physical

Introduced to basic warm-ups and cool-downs as well as pre and post game stretching

Strategy & Tactics

Goal is to draw closest to the jack

Key Competitions

Jitneys and modified games

Train to Play: The Club Competitor

The main objective of Train to Play is to encourage bowlers to improve their basic skills and begin to learn and use elementary tactics during competition. Bowlers should be introduced to some physical requirements that are needed to improve their performance. Bowlers at this stage may compete in leagues, jitneys, or local tournaments. It is important that the athlete learns the necessary skills needed to progress to the next level while having an enjoyable social experience.

 

Skill Performance Indicators: These benchmarks are based on practice/training drills and the percentages, which may seem high, are accurate – bear in mind that game standards/percentages will be considerably lower

 

Indicator Beginning of the Stage Middle of the Stage End of the Stage
Controlling the length of the jack

Within 3 metres of the desired length 50% of the time

Within 2 metres of the desired length 50% of the time

Within 2 metres 70% of the time and in play

Bowling to the 
centre line

Within 80 cm of the centre line 70% of the time

Within 70 cm of the centre line 70% of the time

Within 60 cm of the centre line 70% of the time

Controlling the length of the bowl

Within 3 metres of the jack 70% of the time

Within 2 metres of the jack 70% of the time

Within 1 metre of the jack 70% of the time

Psychological

Establish pre-game & in-game routines

Physical

Advanced knowledge of warm-ups and cool-downs as well as pre and post game stretching. Flexibility aids in correct technical execution.

Strategy & Tactics

Position mat to team’s strength or opposition’s weakness

Key Competitions

Jitneys, Club & Inter-club Tournaments, Novice Championships, Regional Youth Competitions – Under 18

 

Learn to Compete: The Provincial Bowler

In the Learn to Compete stage, bowlers have made the decision to participate in more serious competition. This is the beginning of the “Excellence Stream”, which is made up of the Learn to Complete, Train to Compete, and Train to Excel pathways. Bowlers in this stage are competing from club through to provincial play and may aspire to compete in national competitions. There is an expectation of more advanced knowledge of the rules and application of more advanced strategies. Additional skills, tactical elements, physical and mental capacities need to be introduced to optimize performance.

 

Skill Performance Indicators: These benchmarks are based on practice/training drills and the percentages, which may seem high, are accurate – bear in mind that game standards/percentages will be considerably lower.

 

Indicator Beginning of the Stage Middle of the Stage End of the Stage
Controlling the length 
of the jack

Within 2 metres of the desired length 70% of the time

Within 1 metres of the desired length 75% of the time

Within 30 cm of the desired length 75% of the time

Bowling to the
centre line

Within 60 cm of the centre line 70% of the time

Within 45 cm of the centre line 70% of the time

Within 30 cm of the centre line 70% of the time

Controlling the length
of the bowl

Within 1 metre of the desired length 70% of the time

Within 50 cm of the desired length 70% of the time

Within 25 cm of the desired length 70% of the time

Strike the target
With heavier weight

10%

40%

70%

Psychological

Developed skills to correct issues that affect team dynamics

Physical

Developed core strength and flexibility as they facilitate correct technical skill execution. Endurance and aerobic fitness improved as they contribute to accurate decision making during tournaments.

Strategy & Tactics

Developed game plan for each competition

Key Competitions

Regional Competitions, Canadian Youth Championships (Under 18), Provincial Playdowns

 

Train to Compete: The National Competitor

In the Train to Compete stage, bowlers are now consistent competitors and can play under pressure. Many national championship competitors are found in this stage. Bowlers are more likely to apply advanced strategies and techniques at this stage. Training is very specific and there is an increased emphasis on mental preparation and game focus. While many bowlers in this stage have a goal of competing at the international level, many choose to transition into the Bowling for Life pathway.

 

Skill Performance Indicators: These benchmarks are based on practice/training drills and the percentages, which may seem high, are accurate – bear in mind that game standards/percentages will be considerably lower

 

Indicator Beginning of the Stage Middle of the Stage End of the Stage
Controlling the length 
of the jack

Within 30 cm of the desired length 75% of the time

Within 30 cm of the desired length 85% of the time

Within 30 cm of the desired length 90% of the time

Bowling to the
centre line

Within 30 cm of the centre line 70% of the time

Within 15 cm of the centre line 70% of the time

Within 15 cm of the centre line 80% of the time

Controlling the length
of the bowl

Within 25 cm of the desired length 70% of the time

Within 15 cm of the desired length 70% of the time

Within 15 cm of the desired length 70% of the time

Strike the target
With heavier weight

70%

75%

80%

Psychological

Personalized anxiety control methods in place

Physical

Improved Aerobic fitness, core strength, balance and flexibility as these play key roles in success during multi-day tournaments. Improved understanding of nutrition and hydration needs pre, during, and post game.

Strategy & Tactics

Able to implement different strategies for game variations (i.e. sets play, 2-bowl triples, etc.)

Key Competitions

Canadian Lawn Bowling Championships (Majors), Canadian Outdoor Singles Championships, Canadian Indoor Singles Championships, Canadian Youth Championships, North American Challenge

 

Train to Excel: The International Podium Performer

Bowlers in the Train to Excel stage aspire to be international champions. Significant time is devoted to further the development of tactical and technical playing skills. Athletes are striving to reach the highest pinnacles of bowling success in this stage. Therefore, the training is much more specialized to meet their needs. This is the final stage of the “Excellence Stream”. Athletes who retire from this stage often transition to the Bowling for Life pathway.

 

Skill Performance Indicators: These benchmarks are based on practice/training drills and the percentages, which may seem high, are accurate – bear in mind that game standards/percentages will be considerably lower.

 

Indicator Beginning of the Stage Middle of the Stage End of the Stage
Controlling the length 
of the jack

Within 30 cm of the desired length 90% of the time

Within 20 cm of the desired length 90% of the time

Within 15 cm of the desired length 90% of the time

Bowling to the
centre line

Within 15 cm of the centre line 80% of the time

Within 10 cm of the centre line 80% of the time

Within 10 cm of the centre line 90% of the time

Controlling the length
of the bowl

Within 15 cm of the desired length 80% of the time

Within 15 cm of the desired length 85% of the time

Within 15 cm of the desired length 90% of the time

Strike the target
With heavier weight

80%

85%

90%

Psychological

Mental training is incorporated into a yearly plan

Physical

Endurance, aerobic fitness, core training, balance and nutrition  incorporated into yearly plan

Strategy & Tactics

Able to track opponent’s competency and alter game strategies accordingly

Key Competitions

International events, such as Asia-Pacific Championships, World Championships, Commonwealth Games, and invitational events

 

Bowling for Life: A Sport for Life

The Bowling for Life stage is for bowlers who have learned the basics of Bowls and completed the Learn to Bowl stage. They may have left an “excellence stream” stage, or have simply chosen to bowl in a social, less competitive setting. The Bowling for Life stage aims to make sure that bowls is a sport for life, regardless of age, development or progression pathway. There are thousands of bowlers in this stage, making up the biggest category of bowlers in Canada. Their physical ability, competitiveness and skillset can vary drastically, but they are united by a desire to enjoy the sport for life. Many players in the Bowling for Life stage also choose to “give back” to the sport as valuable volunteers.

 

Social / Psychological

Decision making and strategy contribute to mental acuity. Social interaction can provide antidote to isolation for Seniors in their later years.

Physical

Endurance, aerobic fitness, balance and flexibility help prevent injuries and contribute to enjoyment of the game.

Strategy & Tactics

Position mat to team’s strength or opposition’s weakness

Key Competitions

Jitneys, Club & Inter-club Tournaments, Regional Events, Canadian Mixed Pairs Championships, Canadian Senior Triples Championships

 

 

What’s next for LTAD in bowls?

At Bowls Canada Boulingrin we develop resources to support SYSTEM implementation of LTAD through volunteer resources, coach and officials’ recognition, stage-specific training materials and education resources. The result will be better development and success for our bowlers, our clubs and the sport system as a whole. We are also working with our system partners to create clear, transparent pathways to encourage development at each stage of the LTAD model. When we achieve these goals, more Canadians will choose bowls, and more will become lifelong members. Working together, we will build a fun and healthy bowls community in Canada.

 

 

Resources

 

Long-term athlete development Competition review and restructuring final report executive summary of restructured national championship model