Identifying athletic talent and developing that talent to its full potential is a central concern in sport. Understanding talent identification and its implications for both positive and negative developmental outcomes is crucial to sporting success. This is the first comprehensive resource for scientists, researchers, students, coaches, analysts and policymakers looking to improve their knowledge of the talent identification and development process.

With contributions from leading researchers and practitioners, this book offers a complete overview of contemporary talent identification and development from in-depth discussion of methodological and philosophical issues through to practical applications. Adopting an international and multi-disciplinary approach, it addresses all key aspects of the talent identification and development process, including skill acquisition and motor learning, psychological factors and family influences, creating optimal environments for performance, and dealing with injury and rehabilitation.

Presenting an unrivalled wealth of research, the Routledge Handbook of Talent Identification and Development in Sport is an essential resource for any undergraduate or postgraduate degree course in sport studies, sport science, sport coaching or sport management, as well as for sport policymakers, analysts and coaches.

part I|106 pages

Talent identification

chapter 2|9 pages

Does Talent Exist?


chapter 3|16 pages

Does Talent Exist?

A re-evaluation of the nature–nurture debate

chapter 6|11 pages

Why Conceptualizations of Talent Matter

Implications for skill acquisition and talent identification and development

part II|154 pages

Talent development

chapter 9|17 pages

Sport Activity in Childhood

Early specialization and diversification

chapter 10|17 pages

Method in the Madness

Working towards a viable ‘paradigm’ for better understanding and supporting the athlete pathway

chapter 14|15 pages

Understanding Environmental and Task Constraints on Talent Development

Analysis of micro-structure of practice and macro-structure of development histories

chapter 15|14 pages

Perceptual-Cognitive Training

The next piece of the puzzle

chapter 18|19 pages

Longitudinal Studies of Athlete Development

Their importance, methods and future considerations

part III|78 pages

Creating optimal environments

chapter 19|15 pages

Creating Optimal Environments for Talent Development

A holistic ecological approach

chapter 22|13 pages

Applied Motor Learning

Optimal environments for successful development

chapter 24|11 pages

A Smooth Sea Never Made a Skilful Sailor

Optimizing and exploiting the rocky road in talent development

part IV|74 pages

Health and development concerns