Biological Maturation

What is Biological Maturation?

As part of Football NSW youth competitions policy, players that are potentially disadvantaged from a physical perspective, due to later biological maturity, may be eligible to play in a lower age-category.  Although players may be similar in terms of chronological age, their biological age can vary substantially, by as much as 5 years, due to the timing of their adolescent growth spurt.   Late developers can be significantly disadvantaged from a physical stand-point (height, weight, speed, strength).  To identify those players who may be late-developing players, Football NSW has developed a two-step process.

Firstly, clubs and/or parents can self-assess a player’s maturity classification using the resources on this web-page.  Should the player be deemed a late-developer, they can be registered for the second step of the process, which is a verification assessment conducted by FNSW (assessment dates to follow)

This page contains video tutorials to assist in the correct measurements necessary to estimate the player’s biological maturation category.  Accurate measurements of the player’s height, weight and their sitting height are required, in addition to the player’s date of birth, gender, and the date upon which the aforementioned measurements were collected.  The three short video tutorials below provide information on how to conduct these measurements, which should be collected in metric units (cm and kg).  The data recorded can then be inserted into the on-line calculator below.  Please carefully follow the procedures in the videos, and double-check that the data is inserted into the calculator appropriately, as subtle errors can have a significant effect on the results.

Who is Eligible?

The following information seeks to clarify the eligibility of players for the 2024 Season in relation to Biological Maturation Approved Players:

Players assessed as Late Developers:

  • Any player that is assessed as a “late developer” will be given approval to play down an age grade at their club provided that the club has a position(s) available in the team that the player is seeking to register with.

Players Assessed as “on time developers” or “early developers”

  • Any player that is assessed as a “on-time developer” or “early developer” will NOT be permitted to play down an age grade at their club.

Please Note: All players will be required to attend one of the advertised FNSW assessment dates. No Player will retain their 2023 status.

Team Eligibility for 2024

Below are the Competitions and age groups for which the Biological Maturation principle will apply for the 2024 season:

Biological Maturation Age Groups (Imported From Table Press)

Football NSW Boys' Youth League One
Football NSW Boys' Youth League Two
Football NSW Boys' Youth League Three
Association Youth League
Football NSW Girls' Youth League OneN/A
Football NSW Girls' Youth League TwoN/AN/A

Current Squad Numbers:

  • No club/team will be able to register a Player to play in an age grade below the player’s birth year if that player has been assessed as a “on-time developer” or “early developer”;
  • Each club will be permitted to register a maximum of one (1) approved “late developer” per team/age grade. For the avoidance of doubt, player’s classified as late developers must be allocated to and appear on the Player ID Sheets of the youngest squad they are eligible to participate in.

How to Determine if Your Child is Eligible

Below you will be able to find Assessment Instructions to determine if a player is eligible for one of the testing days conducted by FNSW

Measuring Standing Height

Measuring Seated Height

Measuring Body Mass

Words From Our Technical Director Warren Grieve

We are committed to supporting players at all levels ensuring they find the correct environment that will assist with their development. We hope that with the additional information we have provided this will help educate players, parents, and coaches alike as to what they should be considering when it comes to Biological Maturation.

In addition we will continue to support clubs, and their Technical Directors with further education opportunities off the back of the recent Biological Maturation workshop we recently ran at FNSW. It is important that the player is put first. In some instances, players will need to play down due to being classed as a late developer. Likewise there will be times when players need to play up an age group to provide an appropriate level of challenge.

It is also important that if a player is deemed as a late developer or early developer they are still afforded the opportunity to train and when appropriate play with their correct age group,  allowing coaches to bench mark when they should be integrated back into their chronological age group.

Are you Eligible?

The below calculator will provide two results, the estimated age at peak height velocity (APHV) and the maturation category (early, on-time or late developer).  The age at peak height velocity is an estimate of when the player did, or is predicted to go through the most intensive phase of the adolescent growth spurt.  Some players will have already been through the growth spurt, others are yet to do so.  To categorise their maturation status, the APHV is cross-referenced with normative data for boys and girls.  The age criteria used to categorise biological maturation is as follows:

APHV <13.5 = early developer
APHV 13.5-14.5 = on-time developer
APHV >14.5 = late developer

APHV <11.5 = early developer
APHV 11.5-12.5 = on-time developer
APHV >12.5 = late developer

Should the player be classified as a late developer, the player can register for a verification assessment to be conducted by FNSW.  If confirmed as a late developer, the player has the option to register in a lower-age category, however we recommend that the technical directors, coaches, players and parents consider carefully the implications of competing at a lower age-category.  In border-line cases where the player is close to the late developer cut-off (APHV >14.4 for boys, and > 12.4 for girls), players can also register for verification assessment by FNSW but will only be eligible to play down if they are deemed as a late developer.

Please Note: Your first calculation submission will be the ONLY measurement which Football NSW will accept. 

Biological Maturity Calculator

"*" indicates required fields

Use the date picker to enter the assessment date, or enter the date in the format DD/MM/YYYY.
DD slash MM slash YYYY
Use the date picker to enter the player's date of birth, or enter the date in the format DD/MM/YYYY.
DD slash MM slash YYYY
We suggest taking multiple measures and then entering the most consistent or representative value here.
We suggest taking multiple measures and then entering the most consistent or representative value here.
We suggest taking multiple measures and then entering the most consistent or representative value here.
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.


Biological Maturation Testing for 2024 is Now Closed

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