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R Pol, N Balagué, A Ric, C Torrents, J Kiely and R Hristovski
Abstract
There is a need to update scientific assumptions in sport to promote the critical thinking of scientists, coaches, and practitioners and improve their methodological decisions. On the basis of complex systems science and theories of biological evolution, a systematization and update of theoretical and methodological principles to transform the understanding of sports training is provided. The classical focus on learning/acquiring skills and fitness is replaced by the aim of increasing the diversity/unpredictability potential of teams/athletes through the development of synergies. This development is underpinned by the properties of hierarchical organization and circular causality of constraints, that is, the nestedness of constraints acting at different levels and timescales. These properties, that integrate bottom-up and top-down all dimensions and levels of performance (from social to genetic), apply to all types of sport, ages, or levels of expertise and can be transferred to other fields (e.g., education, health, management). The team as the main training unit of intervention, the dynamic concept of task representativeness, and the co-adaptive and synergic role of the agents are some few practical consequences of moving from training to synergizing.
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