Podium Transition

Preparing for future performance is the cornerstone of this phase of development.

Preparing for future performance is the cornerstone of this phase of development

Success as a junior athlete, or the potential to develop future performance as a talent transfer athlete is seen as important. Building consistency of performance at key development events, i.e. World Cup, Continental Championships and other International competitions. You will be 3 - 8 years from pinnacle podium and if considered as an age group, will be 18 – 22 years of age.

You will demonstrate the ability to:

  • Effectively adapt socially to new sporting, education and career opportunities;
  • Develop the work ethic as part of a planned transition stage to achieve future goals;
  • Further develop the ability to take responsibility for your actions and performance;
  • Grow independence of action and thought;
  • Develop an understanding of self-awareness
  • Build the technical and tactical skills that ensure that will ensure future consistency of results and performance;
  • Through the ongoing development of skills, develop the attributes of courage;
  • Develop the ability to consistently make great decisions that improve the position of self and team;
  • Develop the skills to establish realistic performance goals;
  • Develop the attributes of reflection;
  • Develop the ability to work towards long term objectives and to deal with setbacks;
  • Be an active learner.

As a rider beginning to transition to podium level performances you will be consciously working on the attributes necessary to consistently deliver excellent results. As your focus on cycling increases you will begin to understand how demanding the environment you perform and train in is.

The following attributes continue to be seen as key to delivering excellent performance results:

Work Ethic

  • Always behave professionally

Professional behaviour means taking pride in your personal appearance, arriving in time to prepare for the session ahead and being courteous to those working with and around you.

  • Organisation & High Productivity

Ensure that requested information is delivered in a timely manner with a standard of accuracy and order. Establishing organisational methods that work for you are key to securing your success in future.

  • Teamwork & Cooperation

Understand that you are part of something that is bigger than yourself, you are part of a team. Make an effort to cooperate with those in your team and foster opportunities for teamwork where possible.

  • Determination to Succeed

To succeed you will need to seek internal motivation, you are in control of the outcome. Search for resources that can help you and try to find remedies to resolve any issues.

  • Consistent & High-Quality Work

Strive to succeed with a high standard of professionalism and relish in challenging tasks that enhance your learning. Use the people around you to seek feedback and act on it to improve.


  • Determination

Always perform to the best of your ability. Never lose sight of your goals even under pressure instead use that opportunity to refocus.

  • Mastery (Self-Confidence)

Back yourself and be confident in your ability to deliver a skill or perform a desired behaviour. Draw on self-confidence gained by impressive performances, achieving goals and mastering skills.

  • Assertiveness

Be assertive and confident in your leadership of others and use your initiative when faced with difficult or potentially hazardous situations.

  • Venturesome (Coping with Fear)

Take calculated risks in the pursuit of greater performance. Remember that those who are courageous are not fearless, instead they are people that face difficult or risky situations in spite of their fear. Take your fear and own it.

  • Sacrifice (Altruistic Behaviour)

Recognise when others need something more than you and compete even when facing the possibility of defeat.

Grit & Resilience

Demonstrate grit, perseverance and the passion to achieve long-term goals. Grit entails working strenuously toward challenges, maintaining effort and interest over years despite failure, adversity, and plateaus in progress. Approach achievement as if it were a marathon, where stamina is your advantage. When disappointment or boredom signals to others that it is time to change trajectory and cut losses, put your head down and stay the course.

True resilience won’t happen overnight, it is built up over time through situations and scenarios which will test you and require you to succeed in the face of adversity. Think about how you cope with difficult situations and develop strategies to help you adapt and overcome, building your mental strength and emotional resilience.

Realistic Performance Evaluations and Reflection

Set goals for yourself and create realistic performance expectations. Spend time honestly reviewing and reflecting on your performances and adjust your goals to reflect this.

Coping & Decision Making Under Pressure

Use your experience and draw on available resources to make good decisions even when under pressure. Strive to constantly improve performance outcomes whether that means performing under pressure or training under pressure.


Be independent and take responsibility for your actions and decisions. Understand that you are in charge of catering to your needs and be considerate of those around you.


Learn to adapt to new and different conditions by making changes in response to the new environment. In the short term this may mean real time changes to events or training whereas long term changes may affect the environment, events & circumstances.


Take the opportunities offered by your coaches to learn through feedback and constructive criticism of your performances.




Health Performance Issues

Understanding of WADA, Anti-doping

  • Access to DFSNZ education material/presentations
  • Understanding the role and risks of supplements

Education around long game view – winning NOW is not the goal

  • Idea is to develop the athlete’s physical and mental/social abilities
  • This provides a personal platform for world class performances in the future
  • The “future” is likely to be mid to late 20’s!

Keep all providers in a communication loop – eg network athlete’s key providers

  • Importance of a good relationship with athlete’s GP cannot be underestimated
  • Look to integrate providers with face to face contact/activities

Training programme demands to match the athlete’s current physical abilities and stage of physical and mental maturation – requires access to knowledgeable and skilled staff

  • Specificity of cycling training linked to current racing plan
    • And to future cycling desires
  • Strength training appropriate for bone developmental age
    • Open growth plates are at risk of damage with heavy weights/loads and sudden jumps in amount of load
  • Technique focus for gym based activities
  • Importance of adding in arm and leg “impact” training (eg skip rope, jumps, boxing, clap push-ups) for bone development – need appropriate dietary calcium, best to get from dairy products

Work on how to operate effectively when you are uncomfortable and/or stressed

  • Plan for this when training loads are high
  • Accept and acknowledge this when outside stressors impact on athlete life environment
    • Outside stressors often unpredictable
  • NSO to have interviews/sessions specifically aimed at progress in this area
    • Especially before high loading phases and overseas campaigns, to prepare for difficulties, plan to cut down the “outside noise”
    • And after campaigns of what went well
  • Development of a “Battle Mindset” when times are tough

Specific Medical Issues

Athlete’s own medical conditions are well understood and well controlled

Cardiac screening/evaluation

  • Especially if family history of cardiac issues
  • Explore opportunities for access to ECGs/ reports
  • Italy model is all athletes based at any sporting club gets ECG every year, then every 2 years when adulthood reached (whatever that is!) – or something like that

Education material around Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (RED-S)

  • Both to the athlete but also to the parents/caregivers
  • screening

Psychological developments and mental skills training

  • Anxiety, tension, uncertainty are all “normal” emotions that need accepting and working “with” rather than fighting/hiding
  • Balance team goals with individual goals
  • Accepting of different athlete personality behaviours – although these need to conform to the teams “Culture”


  • One of the biggest challenges is a delay in appropriate treatment

Need early, honest reporting of illness and injury concerns, and mental well-being concer


  • If you are a Carded 3 athlete you will be supported by a combination of home based and centralised facilities and programmes. Support will be provided by National and Regional Performance Hubs utilising local providers and facilities. They will access the centralised environment through camps, training and competition opportunities. Co-ordination will be provided by coaches and Performance Service staff in the HP system supported by personal and Hub coaches.


  • You will be supported by your club & trade teams utilising the team’s facilities and competition that supports development toward pinnacle events.


  • If you are a targeted athlete, you will be Carded and supported by Cycling New Zealand on a campaign basis to access facilities and competition that supports your development toward pinnacle events.


  • If you are a targeted athlete, will be Carded and supported by Cycling New Zealand on a campaign basis to access facilities and competition that supports development toward pinnacle events.

High Performance coaches in this transition phase will lead the PsychoSocial transition and development for athletes, alongside the physical, preparing them for High Performance outcomes.

Coaches will have a focus on:

  • Articulating quality information to programme stakeholders in a changing environment;
  • Lead the learning process for developing High Performance coaches;
  • Seek out and provide clear direction and leadership on technical developments and trends as they develop through the utilisation of critical expertise;
  • Clear leadership and instruction on understanding changing trend and implementing strategies into the programme;
  • Have a great understanding of the process of skill acquisition, understanding gaps and planning improvement;
  • Manage a long term program that takes into account individual requirements to ensure future performance, whilst delivering shorter term objectives with the ability to engage, lead and influence a variety of stakeholders;
  • Lead the team of athletes, coaches and support staff to achieve agreed goals.
  • Manage the planned social, educational & career needs as riders transition to new or centralised sporting environments;
  • Developing campaign and programme leadership across the coaching and support team.
  • Have a developing knowledge of physiology, periodisation and training prescription;
  • Have a great understanding of the process of skill acquisition, understanding gaps and planning improvement;
  • Have a strong knowledge of nutrition, S&C, mental skills and other athlete services that enables the coach to lead these disciplines;
  • Have strong knowledge of the tactical and technical requirements of competition