Athlete Pathway

We all participate in hockey for many different reasons. Some are interested in maintaining an active and healthy lifestyle, others love the thrill of competing with their friends and a rare few set their sights on winning medals for their country. Whatever the motivation, we mostly choose our own pathways, although sometimes the pathway chooses us.

Hockey Australia, in conjunction with the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS), has developed a new framework to capture these different pathways and address the current shortfalls in applied research and practice specific to athlete development. It is called FTEM.

FTEM (representing Foundations, Talent, Elite and Mastery) is a user-friendly framework of sporting development that is representative of the ‘whole of sport’ pathway continuum.

It integrates three key outcomes of sport participation: active lifestyle, sport participation and sport excellence. It provides a practical method to assist all hockey stakeholders to construct a more functional athlete and sport development system.

The FTEM framework can be used as a practical planning and review tool for a broad range of sporting stakeholders including parents, teachers, clubs, coaches, sports science and sports medicine personnel and the elite level hockey programs. This enhanced understanding of the hockey pathway will help us to improve the experiences of more people, at more levels of the pathway, more often.

Key features

  • Developed through action research with the AIS
  • Representative of the ‘three worlds’: active lifestyle,sport participation and sport excellence
  • Holistic and multidisciplinary hockey model
  • Fully integrated
  • Semi-linear design permits all possible movement variations up, down and across the FTEM framework, thereby recognising that individuals can be simultaneously participating in multiple sports at multiple levels of the pathway
  • Features variable entry and exit points within the developmental pathway
  • Non-prescriptive, allowing broad user flexibility and adaptability
  • Devoid of fixed age boundaries
  • Incorporates those with the potential to be elite, which has previously been identified as an insufficiently considered component of high performance modelling
  • Reinforces the need for the right support at the right time and with the right athletes