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  • Developing an Elite Athlete

    Courtesy of SportIQ

    When developing your players for maximum performance, what really pushes them to an elite level?

    The United States Olympic Committee (USOC) recently published a report based on a survey distributed to nearly 2,000 U.S. Olympic athletes. The survey intended to gauge what the USOC could do to improve the quality and effectiveness of programs focused on talent identification and development.

    What do the Olympics have to do with your team of players you don’t choose and whose motivation varies? This information can help coaches of any sport and any age group guide their teams to success.

    According to the USOC report, the top two reasons Olympic athletes gave for pursuing elite levels of performance were “intrinsic love of activity” (they liked being active) and love of the sport. What does that tell me as a coach? It’s my job to get my players to love being active and to love lacrosse.

    It’s my job to make it fun.

    Format your practices so that the mindset of the athletes becomes, “I want to go to practice,” as opposed to the all-too-often-heard, “I have to go to practice.” Get your players addicted to lacrosse. Implement drills with a fast pace, high touch counts and opportunities for frequent participation.

    Another factor contributing to the desire to achieve at the highest level, according to the USOC report, was multi-sport athleticism. College lacrosse coaches almost universally prefer athletes who play multiple sports in high school. The data collected by the USOC reinforces that preference. Most Olympians did not specialize in their sport until very late in their development. Even then, some continued to participate in other sports.

    It is downright painful to hear a 9-year-old say he or she solely plays lacrosse year-round, switching between teams based on the season. Research shows the best athletes in the world participated in at least two sports through high school. Ninety-seven percent of USOC respondents who followed that path credited multi-sport participation directly for their success.

    If you ask your players to commit to lacrosse full time, you are holding them back and limiting their upside.

    In his book, “Outliers,” Canadian journalist Malcolm Gladwell popularized the 10,000-hour rule that it takes 10,000 hours of practice to achieve mastery in a field. We might be tempted to interpret this to mean we must constantly practice one thing to become excellent at it. But would you want an athlete who 10,000 hours playing wall ball or one who divided 10,000 hours between basketball, hockey and lacrosse?

    We can teach kids to catch and throw. Some say we can’t teach them to be athletes. I refute that. If we encourage and expect multi-sport participation, we indirectly teach them to be athletes.

    The USOC surveyed more than 300 athletes who competed in one or more Olympics between 2000 and 2012 to identify the factors and circumstances surrounding their success.

    Intrinsic love of activity – 4.32
    Love of sport – 4.309
    Early success – 3.583
    Parental influence – 3.489
    Coaches recruitment – 3.400
    Peer recruitment – 2.805
    Sibling recruitment – 2.557
    PE teacher influence – 2.299

    Coaches that can infuse competition with athlete-centric success and fun will set up athletes for a great experience.

    Age U10 – 3.11
    Age 10-14 – 2.99
    Age 15-18 – 2.2
    Age 19-22 – 1.27
    Age 22-older – 1.31

    The findings indicate that Olympians were involved in an average of three sports per year until age 14, which belies the notion that early specialization is critical to long-term success. Multi-sport play appeared to be beneficial to these Olympians.

    Over to you. How would you identify the factors that influence your lacrosse player’s sport decision? Is it one or more of the eight above, or something else? Let us know in the comments section.

    TJ Buchanan is the coaching education content manager at US Lacrosse.

  • Squash Talk

    Denver, Colo. - Wednesday, December 10, 2014 - The start of December was one to remember. The 2014 SHOP.CA Women’s World Team Squash Championship drew athletes, coaches and squash
    fanatics from 20 countries to share more than just a competition but also the sport. Every athlete kept fans fixated on the court with heart-pounding action all week long.

    England defeated first-time finalists Malaysia 2/1 to win the 2014 World Championship title for the seventh time this past weekend. Team Malaysia upended the favorite, Egypt 2/0 in the semifinal round. Raneem El Welily fell to Nicol David in one of the most competitive match ups of the week and Low Wee Wern upset Nour El Sherbini for the deciding point to solidify Malaysia’s slot in the final. Amanda Sobhy and Team USA beat France 2/0 to capture 5th place and their best finish in the World Team Championship. Lastly, we would like to highlight Omneya Abdel Kawy who played in her eighth World Championship!

    Harrow Sports proudly outfitted Team Canada, Malaysia, India, USA, Wales and was the official apparel provider and racquet sponsor of the WWT Tournament. Harrow also supported the new line of string during the tournament. If you didn’t get a chance to test the new line of string, please contact Dave Rosen or Manek Mathur for samples.

    Team Harrow would like to welcome Laurens Jan Anjema and Donna Urquhart back to the court after months of being sidelined with injuries.  We are thrilled to see the Harrow racquets in hand and moving!

    Share your squash updates, apparel and equipment by tagging @harrowsports to be featured on the Official Harrow Sports Instragram and Twitter accounts.#TeamHarrow #UnleashYourGame

  • The Platform Tennis Season has Commenced

    Congratulations to Harrow Sports sponsored players, Martin Bostrom and Sebastian Bredberg for competing in the semi-finals of The 2014 Patterson Open held in Fairfield, CT. On the way to the semi-final round, they beat Goncalves-King 6-1, 7-5 and Hughes-Mazzarese 6-4, 6-0. They then met Innes-Irdoja and lost a hard fought match by 6-4, 7-5.

    It was great to see The Patterson Club Open drew a lot of attention this past weekend. Congratulations to all the participants!

    All the results and photos from this past weekend can be found by clicking here!


      Sebastian Bredberg
    Height: 6'1"
    Rank: #3 Singles
    Paddle: Harrow Eclipse
      Martin Bostrom
    Height: 6'2"
    Rank: #5 Singles
    Paddle: Harrow Ballistic
  • Harrow Sports and Play4theCure Team Up

    Harrow Sports has turned pink and is partnering with The National Foundation for Cancer Research’s sports fundraising campaign Play4TheCure. Harrow is joining the effort to empower athletes and coaches by selling Play4theCure t-shirts and donating 10% of the proceeds to The National Foundation for Cancer Research. Harrow Sports will also be donating a $250 gift card to Harrow Sports for the team that raises the most money this season!

    Play4theCure was founded in 2006 by Christine K. Reinprecht, coach of the Mystx Field Hockey Club in Feasterville, PA and a current board member of USA Field Hockey.  Play4theCure began as an annual indoor field hockey tournament to raise money for the fight against breast cancer.  The initiative has since expanded to include recreational programs, as well as middle school, high school and collegiate teams.

    photo(1)“I am thrilled Harrow Sports is joining the Play4theCure Team,” said Tina Reinprecht, Founder of Play4theCure. “Harrow Sports has a rich tradition of supporting field hockey programs at multiple levels but especially at the grass roots level.  It’s no surprise that they recognize Play4theCure’s grass roots participation and be eager to assist our mission to help fund cancer research.”

    “Harrow is thrilled to partner with NFCR’s Play4theCure to provide additional resources to help raise awareness and motivate the field hockey community to raise funds for cancer research,” said Alli Tanner, Field Hockey Brand Manager of Harrow Sports. “Play4theCure is an impressive program. The ability for teams to be a part of something bigger than themselves is truly incredible. We are honored to be the newest member of the team and look forward to contributing to the cause.”


    JOIN THE MISSION! Buy the Harrow Sports Play4theCure awareness t-shirts for your team, coach and friends.  Participate as a team, youth program or collegiate squad by signing up at http://www.nfcr.org/play-4-cure-registration-form or contact NFCR at Play4theCure@nfcr.org.

    SHARE YOUR STORY Tag @harrowsports with #Play4theCure with your story and your t-shirt for a chance to win a prize and be featured on the official Harrow Sports Instagram!

  • Introducing the newest Harrow Sports Polo, the Tipped Cotton Polo


    The Tipped Cotton Polo is set on placket, garment-washed for extra softness and is extremely durable.  The high end cotton polo is available in white tipped with green and navy or white tipped with Carolina blue and navy. The classic look is essential to any man’s wardrobe and will be the go-to for events such as casual nights out, corporate functions and anything involving sports. This garment is deemed to be the corporate favorite and team travel necessity.

  • Free Shipping, Every Day!


    * No Code Needed *

    * Not Valid on International Orders *

    * Not Valid with any other Promotion *

    * Not Valid on Cases of Lacrosse Balls and Lacrosse Bounce Back *

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