Journal of Athletic EnhancementISSN: 2324-9080

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Coordination Abilities of Athletes: Basics of Manifestation, Evaluation and Elucidation: A Review

The coordination abilities (CA) of athletes largely determine how well they acquire and refine technical skills and serve as background for sport-specific techno-tactical mastery. Descriptions of CA contain many equivocal and incomplete statements. This paper is intended to review basic positions, evidence from scientific studies and advanced practice focusing on principal aspects of the manifestation, evaluation and elucidation of coordination prerequisites for athletic mastery. The current widely accepted classification of basic CA embraces kinesthetic differentiation, rhythmic ability, spatial orientation, complex motor reaction, and agility and balance ability. Available research findings make it possible to characterize efficient manifestation of CA and training outcomes of programs to intentionally stimulate various CA.As a rule the CA level of qualified athletes is significantly higher compared to non-athletic subjects. Furthermore, systematic athletic training leads to a remarkable increase in coordinative competence as well as enhanced sport-specific technical skills. Correspondingly, more qualified athletes demonstrate higher levels of CA than their less competent counterparts.Training strategies to implement coordination programs may emphasize three basic versions: (1) complex stimulation of many CA, (2) selective accentuated training for the improvement of certain sport-specific CA, and (3) prospective planning of coordination training as part of specialized multiyear preparation. Ages 8 to 10 years have been singled out as the most favorable time span for the development of coordinative prerequisites. The subsequent period of puberty is characterized by a growth spurt which has a detrimental impact on CA development. At that time pronounced coordination training is required to compensate for this negative effect. Further preparation of more mature and qualified athletes should also include sufficient volumes of coordination training to support techno-tactical mastery and to prevent injuries.

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