Relative Age Effects in Basketball: Exploring the Selection into and Successful Transition Out of a National Talent Pathway

Kelly, Adam L. and Jiménez Sáiz, Sergio Lorenzo and Lorenzo Calvo, Alberto and de la Rubia, Alfonso and Jackson, Daniel T. and Jeffreys, Mark A. and Ford, Charlie and Owen, Dave and Santos, Sara Diana Leal dos (2021) Relative Age Effects in Basketball: Exploring the Selection into and Successful Transition Out of a National Talent Pathway. Sports, 9 (7). e101. ISSN 2075-4663

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Relative age effects (RAEs) appear consistently prevalent throughout the youth basketball literature. However, the selection into and successful transition out of a national talent pathway in basketball is yet to be explored. Thus, the primary aim of this study was to explore the influence of relative age, gender, and playing time based on the selection into the Regional Talent Hubs and Basketball England youth teams (U16, U18, and U20) and the successful transition into the England National Senior Teams. Participants who were selected into the male (n = 450) and female (n = 314) Basketball England Talent Pathway were allocated into one of three cohorts: (a) Regional Talent Hubs (U12 to U15; n = 183), (b) England National Youth Teams (U16, U18, and U20; n = 537), and (c) England National Senior Teams (n = 44). A chi-square test was used to compare the birth quarter (BQ) distributions of each cohort against the expected distributions, with a Cramer’s V (Vc) used to interpret effect sizes. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals were also calculated to compare the likelihood of each BQ being represented. Males revealed significant RAEs across both the Regional Talent Hubs (p 0.001, Vc > 0.29, OR = 10) and England National Youth Teams (p 0.001, Vc > 0.17, OR = 3.1). In comparison, females only had significant RAEs in the Regional Talent Hubs (p 0.001, Vc > 0.29, OR = 2.3). Despite RAEs being prevalent throughout youth levels, there were no significant differences in the BQ distribution based on playing time and those who made the successful transition to the England National Senior Teams. These findings demonstrate the potential mechanisms of RAEs in basketball, as well as the impetus to explore more equitable competition structures within the England Basketball Talent Pathway.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: ** From MDPI via Jisc Publications Router ** History: accepted 07-07-2021; pub-electronic 12-07-2021. ** Licence for this article:
Identification Number:
7 July 2021Accepted
12 July 2021Published Online
Uncontrolled Keywords: talent identification, talent development, athlete development, expertise, sports coaching, growth and maturation
Subjects: CAH03 - biological and sport sciences > CAH03-02 - sport and exercise sciences > CAH03-02-01 - sport and exercise sciences
Divisions: Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences > Centre for Life and Sport Sciences (C-LASS)
SWORD Depositor: JISC PubRouter
Depositing User: JISC PubRouter
Date Deposited: 21 Jul 2021 14:25
Last Modified: 12 Jan 2022 11:36

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