The following outlines the AFL Talent Pathway so that players and their parents have a clear understanding of the path towards playing at the highest level.
The AFL Talent Pathway, summarised in the graphic to the right, has been developed to ensure it incorporates the following as its guiding principles:
Comprehensive (levels of participation that link)
Inclusive and equitable (accommodates all young people)
Coherent (prescribes links between levels)
Developmental (meets participants needs)
Informed (by research and practice)
This pathway provides a quality environment where young players can sequentially develop their skills through activities, games, match rules and conditions fitting their stage of development, learning and ability.
At the youth level, the talent pathway to becoming an AFL player begins to emerge through regional development squads (eg. NAB League junior programs) that have the dual purpose of developing individual player’s abilities and preparing teams to participate in state championships.
Each of the regional development squads will have their own processes in regards to inclusion into the program and we encourage you to contact your region for further details. Once included in the regional development squad, players are then selected to participate in further development programs such as the state squads and the AFL academy.
Players will then be able to nominate for the AFL Draft in the year of their 18th birthday.