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July 2. How to raise a Champion

Athletic talent is hard to identify, especially early in a child’s development. Good athletes are not created overnight, but instead natural talent and ability must be nurtured. Athletes are required to
have different skills and capabilities to be successful. Speed, agility, and power are all important but just as key is the ability to read a game or a race.

The brain plays a large role, cognitive ability, and visual-perceptual skills are just as important as technical and physical skills. Talent identification is not based only on what the player knows but also her/his ability to learn, develop and progress, how coachable the athlete is. Soft skills are also crucial such as reaction to fatigue, concentration, dealing with fear, anxiety, self-doubt.

At elite level, even young players are exposed to numerous stresses and pressures and need to learn how to cope with the highs and lows of competitive sports. And when all is said and done, after years of hard work, only a very small fraction of those who started end up practicing the sport they love, professionally. What happens with the others depends on coaches and educators, using sports as an educational and developmental tool and preparing young people for life. A webinar focusing on discovering, nurturing, and launching sports talent without leaving anybody behind.

Alecko Eskandarian │Director, Player Development, Major League Soccer│USA

Hazel Clark│3X United States Olympian, Director of Sports, Bermuda Tourism Authority │USA

Franck Traore │Technical Director, NBA Africa│ South Africa

Hicham Bennouna │Dean of Students & Athletic Director, American Academy Casablanca, Basketball

Coach, Tibu Basketball Academy │ Morocco

Ruben Lezcano │Head of methodology at Football Federation of Armenia │ Spain

This webinar is part of World Learning’s International Sports Programming Initiative for Middle East, North Africa, and Sub-Saharan Africa Program (ISPI) —Virtual Together program, a series of virtual events, launched in the context of the COVID-19 crisis. ISPI is a program of U.S. Department of State's Sports Diplomacy division. The series aims to engage the sports community globally, to creatively problem solve, share digital tools and work together, follow health guidance, and continue to promote active, healthy
lifestyles both physically and mentally throughout this crisis. Additional modules related to these objectives are being developed and will be announced.

The webinar is produced by Digital Communication Network, a diverse professional coalition in the digital space.