About Canadian Sport School

Elite high school athletes typically struggle to manage their time, commitments and demands of being a teenager along with the expectations of being a high performance athlete striving for excellence. Life for a young athlete requires balancing entire days at high school with afternoons, evenings and weekends spent training and competing. This often leaves inadequate time for homework completion, rest, recovery and sleep which ultimately leads to a decrease in performance both in the classroom, on the playing field or in athletes’ optimal health.

The Canadian Sport Institute Pacific has created a program to help alleviate these pressures and ensure that our future Olympians and National Team members have all the skills and resources needed to continue to progress as high performance athletes, while excelling both on the playing field and in the classroom. The Canadian Sport School provides an opportunity for secondary school athletes to use school hours and to earn academic credit for:

  • Physical training through the IGNITE™ Athlete Development Program – Developing athleticism and new skills in the following areas; Strength Training, Sprint Training and basic gymnastics movements.
  • Independent Study Blocks – Daily time for homework completion, quiet study or online learning.
  • Sport Performance Seminars – Weekly seminars in the areas of high performance will support the students’ athletic knowledge and development towards success.

IGNITE™ Athlete Development Program

The physical component of the Canadian Sport School is called the IGNITE™ Athlete Development program. This same program is run at all 3 Canadian Sport Institute Campuses and at our 5 PacificSport Regional Centres. This program is strictly monitored by the Canadian Sport Institute to uphold high consistent standards in program delivery as well as testing and reporting methods.

The goal of the IGNITE™ Athlete Development program is to provide training and foundational movement skills for future elite Canadian athletes in the Train to Train stage of Canada`s Long Term Athlete Development (LTAD). These skills have been deemed important for long term athlete development as they provide the building blocks for future movement development and physical preparation. The curriculum is divided into three main movement streams consisting of strength training, gymnastics and sprint training.

This curriculum is laid out to provide key skills within each of the three movement streams that athletes must look to develop over the course of their participation in the IGNITE™ program. Along with these key skills, trouble shooting tips to common movement problems and variations of each skill are provided. This curriculum looks to serve as an endpoint to the athlete’s developmental process while allowing each centre to create its own path to that point.

Canadian Sport School Victoria - Stretching
Canadian Sport School Victoria - Weight Training
Canadian Sport School Victoria - Classroom

Strength Training

Introduces athletes to a number of key bodyweight and strength training exercises that form the core of many resistance training programs. By teaching young athletes proper technique in these movements, training efficiency will increase and the risk of injury will decrease. This will help maximize training time in the weight room, leading to greater improvements in strength and power.

Gymnastics

Provides a unique opportunity for athletes to control, strengthen, and manipulate the body through space and around fixed implements. Developing kinesthetic awareness, mobility/flexibility, landing skills and whole body strength through gymnastics training will prepare an athlete for unpredictable sporting situations and help decrease the athletes’ risk of injury.

Sprint Training

Prepares athletes for efficient and powerful movement on land. Improved technical efficiency in these movements will transfer to both sport specific as well as training situations. Technical efficiency in high speed running allows unique opportunities to operate within the force velocity spectrum.

Testing & Monitoring

To monitor the athletes’ progress through the Ignite program, two streams of testing have been developed. First, to measure improvements in technical proficiency, the Ignite Athlete Development Program Core Movement Evaluation (CME) was developed. Second, a battery of physiological tests has been designed to monitor physiological changes within each athlete.

Anthropomorphic Measurements

Athletes’ physical measurements will be recorded and tracked to include height, weight, wingspan along with other elements that may differ from program to program.

Core Movement Evaluation (CME)

The CME is a technical evaluation of the quality of movement and not a strength testing protocol. At the beginning of Year 1, athletes will undergo an abbreviated CME consisting of the doweling overhead squat, push up, inverted row and walking lunge. At the end of the first year athletes must show technical proficiency in a Clean & Jerk complex. During the second year a Snatch complex is added to the CME. At the conclusion of the IGNITE program, athletes will be able to demonstrate technical skill in both Clean, Jerk and Snatch movements. Qualitative video comparisons of the athletes’ movements are to be made during each CME evaluation and will ideally be shared with the athletes to show improvement.

Physiological Testing

The physiological tests are designed to monitor the general strength/neurological adaptations the athletes make while participating in the program. The physiological test battery are conducted four times per year.

  • 30m spring with 10m split
  • Vertical jump with countermovement
  • Overhead jerk