The Importance of Physical Literacy in Elite Athletes

Ian McKeown, PhD
Head of Athletic Development
Port Adelaide Football Club, AFL
BIO

Let me formally introduce Ian McKeown as Move2Thrive's newest "Movement Ambassador". Ian understands athletic development at the highest level and I am honored that Ian is supporting our mission.  Please read and understand that sport at any level requires physical literacy.


Physical literacy is the cornerstone of athletic development, and long-term health and well-being. In my opinion an unwavering grasp of the fundamental movements required to train and perform in elite sport is essential. Unfortunately, even at the elite end of the performance spectrum I still see people who do not always possess these foundational movement abilities. This is a major roadblock in their athletic preparation for their on-field performance.  

The exposure to a multitude of sports, games, and environments that our children have a right to, has sadly been taken away over the years. This has left children without the pre-requisite skills of movement to enjoy a fun-filled and active lifestyle. For some of us working in strength and conditioning/athletic development it is now a focus of our programming to expose our athletes to the activities they weren’t exposed to, never mind attempt to build performance-orientated athletes. We must regress further with the fundamentals that should be assumed in order to move forward. 

The lack of physical literacy in children is a worldwide epidemic. The promotion of physical literacy and movement ability should be encouraged from all key stakeholders of sport and health professions. Move2Thrive, lead by Dr. Jeff Moreno, is a fantastic vehicle for this and I look forward to joining Jeff and the rest of you on this journey. 

Ian McKeown, PhD
Head of Athletic Development
Port Adelaide Football Club, AFL