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An initiative by
In partnership with Player
Development
Project
An initiative by
In partnership with Player
Development
Project

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An initiative by
In partnership with Player
Development
Project
About
Featured

Sports Bodies Join Together to Change Youth Sport

Youth sport is set to undergo a dramatic shake-up as the leaders of Sport NZ and the country’s five largest participation sports speak out in a united front against negative experiences that are driving too many young New...
Development & Performance

Breaking the Machine

This article is shared by Player Development Project The machine that is premature professionalism in youth sport is a growing problem. Environments created to replicate professional sport, ‘elite’ pathways at 8-years-old and coaches removing autonomy from the environment...
Development & Performance

Controlling Sport Performance

This article is shared by Player Development Project Momentum is a huge element in all sport. Dr. Martin Turner of the Smarter Thinking Project investigates how can players take charge of their own performance. Sport is a dynamic, constantly changing, and...

Case Studies

Case Study: Izzy Hegan

Competitive runner and recent school-leaver Izzy Hegan shares what she has learned about balancing her personal development and enjoyment of sport against a focus on winning. The exams are over and there’s nothing but summer until the results...
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Sport Leadership

Back to the Future: Steve Hansen on Resistors

In this instalment of the Steve Hansen video series, we hear Steve discuss cultural expectations and resistance within the team environment. Steve outlines the model that the All Blacks have used around challenging the players and ensuring direction...
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Sport Leadership

Maximising Player Potential with Rob Sherman

This video is shared by Player Development Project In this Player Development Project Masterclass Discussion, Dave Wright is joined by Rob Sherman to discuss how coaches can maximise player potential. This interview (recorded while Rob was NZF Technical...
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Sport Leadership

Back to the Future: Steve Hansen on Alignment

In part four of the Steve Hansen video series, we flash back to 2015 to listen to Steve discuss alignment within teams. In this video, Steve discusses bringing a vision to life and how collaboration between coaches and...
Development & Performance

Skill: Adapting to the Environment

This article is shared by Player Development Project Player Development Project Lead Researcher James Vaughan highlights recent experiences adapting to new environments to discuss the research around affordances, forms of life and scorpion kicks. At Player Development Project...
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Coaching Fundamentals

How do I support an athlete with a variety of coaches?

In this Balance is Better Q&A discussion, we tackle a community question from Scott. Scott asks, “How should we support athletes who have more than one coach?” To answer this question, National Sport Development Consultant from Sport NZ,...
Sport Leadership

Case Study: Wellington College

Wellington College has reassessed its purpose and this case study shares insight into key changes the prominent school has made based on Sport New Zealand research and some inspiration from Simon Sinek. It starts with why. Simon Sinek’s...

Welcome to the
home of youth sport
in New Zealand.

Welcome
to the home
of youth sport
in New Zealand.

An initiative by
In partnership with Player
Development
Project
Whether you are a coach, parent, administrator or
a leader in youth sport, Balance is Better is for you.

Balance is Better is a fresh way of thinking around the direction of youth sport in New Zealand. It’s about keeping the fun in the game, creating balance in sport participation and nurturing talent at the right pace.

Young people who receive quality experiences in sport become sport lovers for life. And more kiwis participating means a healthier nation and more young people reaching their full potential as adults.

With a mix of articles, interviews, case studies and videos from specialists within youth sport, endorsed by Sport New Zealand, Balance is Better is a way for you to keep up with the play on the latest help, advice and coaching tips from trusted sources.

About
An initiative by
In partnership with Player
Development
Project
Development & Performance

The Value of Values

This article is shared by Player Development Project Values represent what we believe is important in life. In this article, Research Associate Hanna Eggestrand and Player Development Project Lead Researcher James Vaughan explore basic human values and how...
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Coaching Fundamentals

Aktive Women: An Interview with Simone Spencer

In this interview, Dave Wright is joined by Simone Spencer from Aktive for an in depth discussion on women and girls youth sport, female coach development initiatives and creating learning environments for young people. Simone Spencer is the...
Development & Performance

Research: Ecological Dynamics Approach to Skill Acquisition

This article is shared by Player Development Project Keith Davids, Duarte Araújo, Luis Vilar, Ian Renshaw & Ross Pinder The Big Idea When asked to comment on what he found to be so special in playing the classical...
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Development & Performance

Back to the Future: Steve Hansen on Performance

In our third instalment of the Steve Hansen six part video series, we listen to Steve discuss where he believe performance comes from. With his usual dry sense of humour, we flash back to 2015 after the All...

Secondary School Sport

Happy People, Better Players

This article is shared by Player Development Project In this article, former Chelsea FC & Portsmouth FC academy player, Jack Burns opens up about the harsh realities around pursuing sport as a career & how athlete welfare and happiness...
Sport Leadership

Growing Coaches

Coach education is crucial to ensuring better environments for young people in sport. In this article, we examine the Growing Coaches programme being implemented in secondary schools to help young coaches improve their leadership. Growing Coaches is a...
Case Studies

Case Study: Nathan Twaddle

Former World Champion rower, Nathan Twaddle speaks to Balance is Better on athlete flow and being in the zone to perform. “You know from the sensation,” says Nathan Twaddle*. “You can hear the change as the boat cuts...
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Development & Performance

Q&A: How can I help my players with emotional control?

This video is shared by Player Development Project The question this week comes from Elliott via Facebook; “How can I help my players with emotional control?” In this discussion, Player Development Project hosts, Dan Wright & Dave Wright...

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