U.S. Biathlon Association

ATHLETE SELECTION PROCEDURES

Development Teams

Overview

The following selection criteria specify how athletes qualify for US Biathlon National Team Development Group. Each team has different levels of support and benefits. 

The most important factor in qualifying for an US Biathlon National Team Development Group is to do your best in every competition you enter! Coaching staff will keep track of athlete competition performances at international and domestic competitions, their professional observations, and meet in the spring to compare notes.

Together with the High Performance Director, they craft a recommendation for consideration by the International Competition Committee (ICC) who then discusses the recommendation, asks pertinent questions, and drafts their final recommendation for the Board of Directors to approve at its next meeting.

Team Descriptions

National X Team

BASED IN LAKE PLACID

Several athletes with extraordinary potential for success may be selected for a special training team that will quickly accelerate their development in a highly challenging and dedicated environment. Biathletes with strong junior age group performances or ones who are new to the sport who have exhibited extraordinary potential for success in the sport as well as very high level cross-country skiers who commit to competitive excellence in biathlon are most suitable for this team. It is generally expected that members of this team will demonstrate high performance at the A-team level within 24 months. The staff will propose their recommendations to the ICC for consideration and approval.

Youth / Jr. Development Group

BASED AT REGIONAL CENTERS/CLUBS

The purpose of the Development Group Youth and Juniors is to foster effective training environments and coaching relationships that support the continued development of talented biathletes. Regional and club coaches will work closely with the Jr National Team Coach to understand the Jr Team training plan and apply the principles to the Youth/Jr Development Group athletes they work with.

Biathletes named to this group should have demonstrated not only strong results in the sport, but also that they possess the capacity and potential for significant improvement. Athletes will be recommended by the staff for ICC consideration and approval.

Sr. Development Group

BASED AT REGIONAL CENTERS/CLUBS

The purpose of the Senior Development Group is to foster effective training environments and coaching relationships that support the continued development of talented biathletes and the familiarization of high level cross country skiers to the sport.  Regional and club coaches will work closely with the National Team Head Coach to understand the National Team training plan and apply the principles to the Sr. Development Group athletes they work with. Additionally those coaches will be encouraged to schedule some camps in parallel with National Team camps to have direct exposure to the training environment of the National Team.

Biathletes named to this group should have demonstrated not only strong results in the sport, but also that they possess the capacity and potential for significant improvement. 

Note: Both the National X Team and Development Groups are teams that may be filled with athletes over the course of the training year, not just at the beginning of it.

USBA Principles of Discretion (Summary)

  1. History of performance in an event over the previous two competitive seasons.
  2. Recent display of internationally competitive ski speed in competition and/or training.
  3. Recent improvements in results (both in training and racing).
  4. Recent positive direction or trend of competition results indicating a potential for Olympic success.This includes indication of medal potential in future Olympic or World Championship competition that would be materially enhanced by selection to the Team.
  5. Illness or injury as certified by a USBA-approved physician.