The Long Term Development Plan – LTDP – is a strategic approach in how the club monitors, prepares and manages its leading distance athletes and has the long-term goal to challenge for national team and individual awards.
The plan is derived from a more expansive plan given to the club by Lee Van Haeften. The principles of the plan was promoted by the Coaching and Development Committee and approved by the General Committee.
The first phase of the plan targeted senior, veteran and junior men and created two new positions within the club: they being Team Manager and Athlete Development Coach (ADC). Juvenile distance athletes (both boys and girls) are now also linked into the LTDP strategy.
Under the plan the roles of Team Manager, Head Coach, ADC and Men’s Captain are clearly defined with the role of Team Manager being not unlike the Manager role in club football in that he will oversee the progress of the plan and manage the team(s). The ADC will provide specific strength and conditioning/sports science support to the athletes for the purpose to optimize performance and decrease the risk of injury associated with the demands of athletics.
One key change will see the Team Manager take over the selection and entries to championship and other selected races from the Men’s Captain. Selections will be made in consultation with the Head Coach and the Men’s Captain.
Under the LTDP the athletes will be given a month-by-month training plan specific to their level of fitness/ability. The club, thus, encourages athletes to participate with the LTDP strategy so as to benefit from squad training schedules, improved physical literacy and proper team support systems.
There are 5 distinct training squads as follows:
- A: runners of proven ability/commitment
- B1: progressive runners willing to improve
- B2: mid-range athletes & stronger juveniles
- J1: juvenile athletes (aged 13-17)
- J2: juvenile beginners
It should be noted that the LTDP is about ‘inclusion’ and not exclusion. Thus, members of the club can opt in an out of the programme at any time and women runners are welcome to participate to the coaching and athlete development elements of the plan.