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Sport NZ has developed the Balance is Better philosophy to inform and provide a framework that puts the needs of the participant first. It originated from the Sport NZ Talent Plan 2016-2020 that focused on growing the capability of the sporting system to better prepare athletes in their development phase to help them realise their potential. Balance is Better has now become a broader conversation underpinning Sport NZ’s overall approach to youth sport that focusses on maximising participation and skill development.
We’re losing young people from sport, and they are missing out of the opportunity to be physically active and reach their full potential.
Sport NZ works with the sector to provide quality experiences in sport for all, including for those who enjoy competition as well as those who just want to have fun.
The focus of the Balance is Better philosophy is on why young people play sport – to have fun, be challenged, develop and improve, be part of a team or group, and enjoy time with friends.
There are a number of adult behaviours affecting youth sport. The Balance is Better philosophy pushes back against these.
If we’re going to change this, we need to improve what’s happening at the grass roots and for those involved in delivering youth sport to think differently. We need to think about how we can put the fun and skill development back into kids sport.
It is also about supporting the sport system in leading change and committing to:
Hear what our Balance is Better Champions have to say, who champion the philosophy and work alongside organisations to help them put the needs of their participants first.
Keep winning in perspective and focus on developing a love of sport.
Working together we can provide a positive sporting environment for our kids.
As leaders we need to be bold and courageous to tackle the change needed.