Ten young sportspeople are off to join some of New Zealand’s top sporting talent at an elite breakthrough academy for up-and-coming athletes.

Kicking off next week, the Powerade Breakthrough Academy is a day long programme where aspiring Kiwi athletes have a unique opportunity to receive one-on-one mentoring from top national sportspeople and industry experts.

Basketball star Steven Adams, as well as three All Blacks will mentor the youngsters as they go through physical training and classroom sessions that include goal setting, training techniques and nutrition, led by All Blacks strength and conditioning coach Nic Gill.

We had more than 250 applications, which signals the high standard of young Kiwi athletes, says Tracey Evans, Marketing Manager, Stills at Coca-Cola Oceania.

“We had a huge response and the majority of applicants were regional or national representatives in their respective sport – so to have such a large number of young athletes competing at that level signals our sporting culture is alive and well.”

Steven Adams is clearly a draw card with 71 young basketball players applying, and the next most popular sport is unsurprisingly rugby, with 54 applications. Other represented sports ranged from athletics to swimming, but there were also some unique entries with our young people competing at a high level in archery, synchronised swimming, rodeo and even arm wrestling.

“It doesn’t matter what the sport is, whether it’s fringe or popular, the Powerade Breakthrough Academy is for young people that have the goals, ambition and drive to push themselves as far as they can in their sport, to perform at their peak and we’re excited to give them a skills boost along the way”, says Evans.

The Powerade Breakthrough Academy will be held on Tuesday July 29.