Identification of Young Talents in Sport

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Summary

The identification of talented athletes and their timely inclusion in the training process in the sport which most suits their abilities is one of the most demanding processes in modern sports science. Incorrect decisions are frequent and usually very painful. Elite sport is a field of human creativity which Slovenians value highly. In relation to the size of the population. Slovenia is one of the most successful “sports countries” in the world. Due to a decreased biological basis, a well-meaning and professional approach is necessary in the selection of individuals for a particular sport. The Faculty of Sport has developed certain expert systems and methods of evaluation and identification of talented children, whose purpose is to help parents and experts make the right decisions when it comes to introducing children to sport. These methods were based on the application of specific tests for determining individual motor skills. A battery of 13 morphological tests, 14 tests for special motor skills and 3 tests of the motor skill of running were used. It was determined that special tests of explosive strength and speed had the greatest predictive power for talented children. It should be pointed out that, despite the technology and state-of-the-art methodology used in the measuring procedure, it is impossible to predict talent with absolute certainly, let alone future sports achievements. The human body is an exceptionally complex system which is determined by numerous unpredictable factors. There is no doubt that the results of professional methods can be used as guidelines in the process of selection of an individual for a particular sport.

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