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Featured

Are we giving all young people an opportunity?

In this series of Balance is Better articles, Sport NZ explores the myths surrounding youth sport and the shift in thinking needed to halt declining participation levels in kiwi teens.  All kids deserve an awesome experience in sport. We...
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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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...

Secondary School Sport

Coaching for Impact

Are you a coach working with secondary school age athletes? Applications are open until 30 November for a new Sport NZ coaching programme that aligns with the Balance is Better philosophy, supporting rangatahi to have quality experiences in...
Secondary School Sport

Game Sense: Cricket

This article is shared by Player Development Project Game sense, how do we develop it? PE Teacher & blogger, Sporticus shares his innovative approach to PE and helping his students develop skill and game understanding in cricket through realistic...

Welcome to the
home of youth sport
in New Zealand.

Welcome
to the home
of youth sport
in New Zealand.

Whether you are a parent, coach, administrator or leader
in youth sport, Balance is Better is for you.

Balance is Better offers a fresh way of thinking for those involved in delivering youth sport in New Zealand. With teen participation levels declining, it’s about creating quality experiences for all young people to keep them active and in the game.

Balance is Better focusses on how to encourage participation at all levels and develop skill at the right pace. With a mix of articles, interviews, case studies and videos from specialists, endorsed by Sport New Zealand, Balance is Better is a way to keep up with the play on the latest advice from trusted sources.

Sign up below to receive weekly emails from the Balance is Better team and access to all content across the website.

About
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Sports Parents

Are there too many practices a week?

In this series of Balance is Better articles, Sport NZ explores the myths surrounding youth sport and the shift in thinking needed to halt declining participation levels in kiwi teens.  It is well known that when young people...
Sport Leadership

The heART of Coaching Māori and Pasifika Youth Athletes

The great youth sport coaches are not defined by outcome; that being, wins and losses. Rather, the great youth sport coaches leave long-lasting impressions on their athletes. So, how do you best go about shaping, influencing and empowering...
Secondary School Sport

Shaping the Game

This article is shared by Player Development Project Game-based learning has enormous benefits in terms of decision-making and skill acquisition. In this article, PE Teacher, blogger and regular PDP contributor, Sporticus shares his fantastic article on the advantages of manipulating...
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Development & Performance

Are we writing them off too early?

In this series of Balance is Better articles, Sport NZ explores the myths surrounding youth sport and the shift in thinking needed to halt declining participation levels in kiwi teens.  There is a belief that child success will...
Case Studies

Case Study: Otago Rugby

Rugby holds a special place in the heart of many New Zealanders and Otago has been the breeding ground for many of our most cherished players and teams. In 2018 when only ten teams across boys’ and girls’...
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Development & Performance

Building Mental Strength

This video is shared by Player Development Project. The psychological component of player development can be seen as the most complex. It is dynamic and very much has to be catered towards the individual. In a coaching context...
Coaching Fundamentals

How many times should I tell you?

This article is shared by Player Development Project Communication is a crucial element of effective coaching. In this article, Professor Stephen Rollnick challenges traditional methods of coach communication and offers some practical solutions for coaches to improve player relationships. I...
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Secondary School Sport

Understanding Identity with Dr. Suze Brown

This video is shared by Player Development Project In this Masterclass Discussion, Player Development Project Editor, Dave Wright sits down with Dr. Suze Brown, a Clinical Psychologist and expert in the areas of identity and attachment theory. Suze...

What can you
do to help?

Keep up with the play on the latest thinking, advice
and coaching tips from trusted sources.
For Coaches

Keep winning in perspective and focus on developing a love of sport.

For Parents

Working together we can provide a positive sporting environment for our kids.

For Administrators

As leaders we need to be bold and courageous to tackle the change needed.


Development & Performance

The value of sport for our communities

The benefits of being involved in sport are far-reaching. For participants, research shows that sport is a great tonic for making us happier, healthier people. At a community level, we know sport is a great connector. Sport helps us to feel included and supported, with...
Development & Performance

Change the Story

This article is shared by Player Development Project The power of storytelling in human evolution and development is often overlooked in sport. PDP Editor and UEFA A licensed coach, Dave Wright discusses how the stories we share and our ability...
Sports Parents

Advice for summer codes delivering youth sport during COVID-19

COVID-19 has had a huge impact on this year’s winter sport season and there’s plenty the summer codes can learn from their seasonal counterparts. Alert level restrictions have made event organisation difficult, and running community sport challenging, especially...
Coaching Fundamentals

Coaching in the Grey

This article is shared by Player Development Project How important is adaptability and context in your coaching approach? UEFA A licensed football coach, Dan Wright discusses the idea of creating a flexible framework for players to explore and how coaching...

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