ONTARIO GIANTS LONG-TERM DEVELOPMENT STRUCTURE
FOLLOWING THE BASEBALL CANADA LTDP
The Ontario Giants are adapting the Long-term Athlete Development Program authored by Baseball Canada. We will be calling it “Ontario Giants Development Structure.” It is our mission to provide the absolute best in player development. The OG believe implementing a program designed by Baseball Canada is the best way to help young baseball players become ready for the College or Professional Baseball. We, The Giants, believe at younger ages premature competition does not help an athlete, but training and regular repetition will help.
When an Ontario Giant athlete graduates from his final year at 18u he will be fully prepared for College/University baseball or the professional ranks. The player is fundamentally sound in all technical aspects of the game; throwing, fielding, running and hitting. He will be highly experienced in top level competition, will have composure to deal with adversity, will be mentally strong and able to adjust to and learn from failure. Teaching each player that he has control over his own career through the understanding that consistent improvement is necessary to reach the highest level of baseball is the most important aspect of the development program.
So what does this mean for OG players? We will be focused on implementing the following stages to our youth development program, starting with our youngest age group U12:
STAGE ONE: LEARNING THE GAME 10U – 12U
Learning the game and fundamentals
Training fundamentals such as hitting, throwing, running, fielding, etc.
Enjoying all aspects of training and competition
Players play all positions, all players will pitch
Age based pitch counts
70% training to 30% competition ratio
Focus on fun, skill development and training
STAGE TWO: GOAL SETTING 13U-15U
Advanced fundamental training
Position specific training, i.e. Pitching, Infield, Outfield, etc.
Goal setting, coping with success and failure
Introduction of strength and speed training
Focusing on 2-3 positions
Emphasis on competing as a team and not just an individual
60% training to 40% competition ratio
STAGE THREE: LEARN TO COMPETE 16U – 18U
Refinement of skills/ position specific skills
Full strength and speed training programs
Playing highest level competition
Focus on discipline, accountability, confidence, will to win and mental toughness
Showcasing/promotion to higher levels
40% training to 60% competition ratio
*please note the following information is taken directly from the Baseball Canada LTDP
“The 10 “S’s” related to sports training and practice:
Stamina, Speed, Skill, Strength, Suppleness, Structure/Stature, Psychology, Sustenance, Schooling (Stress), Socio-cultural.
Long-term development encourages players to enjoy the game and improve performances. This program for young athletes is designed to promote lifelong enjoyment of athletic activity, provide a structured player development pathway, describe best practices for elite players and create long-term excellence.
The 10-year rule. Scientific research has determined that it takes at least 10 years and 10,000 hours of training for athletes in any sport to reach elite performance. Research has also shown that baseball players reach their peak as an athlete at 27 years of age.
The key components impacting LTAD for Baseball in Canada can be broadly categorized under: player development, coaching, leadership and organization, competition and facilities.
It is not easy to implement this program. It will take patience to educate parents, coaches and players. This system has always been in place for Baseball Canada but the value has not been put in place yet or followed by any elite program. Baseball Canada has a vision and the Ontario Nationals baseball organization will now implement it for the first time.
Here is another chart below that shows that the high risk of elite achievement is seen as a higher priority than lifelong wellness for young baseball players:
Finally, the development of an enduring and effective process that meets core principles and goals will require a commitment to continuous improvement and an ongoing reach for excellence. It is time to make a change. Baseball is changing, athletes are changing; this is the right way. Change will only be effective for Baseball when we change what we believe, what we do and how we do it.”
Follow this link for more details and information on the Long Term Development Program for young athletes: Baseball Canada LTDP