Player Development

North Regina has a strong commitment to player development regardless of the player’s age, skill, ability or baseball experience.  It’s important to ensure that our athletes are receiving the proper level of activity and instruction appropriate for their age and skill level.  There is a national movement across most sports to provide a better focus on athlete development; to provide the optimal level of training, competition and recovery appropriate for young athletes.  Here is why Long Term Athlete Development (LTAD) is important to North Regina.

Baseball Canada LTAD 

LTAD is a systemic approach being developed and adopted by Baseball Canada to maximize a participant’s potential and involvement in baseball.  Tailoring a child’s sports development program to suit basic principles of growth and maturation, especially during the critical early years of development, enables them to reach full potential and increase lifelong participation in baseball and other physical activities.

National Focus on LTAD 

Many successful sports programs and leagues focus on LTAD.  Martin Academy focuses on training and skill development and prepares athletes for life long involvement in the sport.  Hockey Canada has a LTAD model that helps athletes, coaches and parents find the best way to approach athlete development.  Other National Clubs that focus on LTAD include volleyballgymnastics, lacrosse, cycling, and the list goes on.  

Development Happens at Training

Baseball is unlike other sports (such as hockey or football) where an athlete is nearly fully engaged in the game at all times.  In baseball, a player may go several innings or games without being part of a play.  That is why, for baseball in particular, it is important to ensure players are receiving the appropriate amount of training  sessions to ensure they continue developing as an athlete.

More Training Sessions are Needed

An analysis of our North Regina 2019 Regular Season showed that many Divisions were not training enough, particularly in our younger, grass-roots Divisions.  Out of all on-field sessions, here is how many training sessions  each Division held: T-Ball (25%), Junior Rookie (27%), Senior Rookie AA (43%), Senior Rookie AAA (53%), Minor AA (45%), Minor AAA (60%), Major AA (45%), Major AAA ( 51%)

Program Enhancements

North Regina has made significant improvements to our baseball programming specifically aimed at player development

Pre-Season Training

Teams will provided with pre-season training times to help prepare for the Regular Season. By forming our teams in early April, it provides coaches an opportunity to hold several training sessions before the start of Regular Season. If the weather cooperates, these will be held outside. If not, we will rent indoor space at Evraz Place.

League Scheduled Practices

Teams will be provided with scheduled practice times, as well as game times. This will help to ensure our players are getting adequate training time to prepare them for competition. Scheduling practices does not mean less games. We intend to schedule 12 games in AA and AAA for Senior Rookie, Minor and Major. Our goal is to provide a more balanced approach to the training-competition ratio.

Structured Training Sessions

We expect training sessions to be structured, focused and meaningful. To aid this, we will be creating a Guide to Coaching that includes rules for the Division, guidelines for coaching a team, areas of focus for each Division and Tier and sample training plans and drills. Coaches will also have access to mentors who will be available for consultation or to help with training sessions.

Developmental 'A' Tier

In 2020, we will introduce an A Tier in the Senior Rookie, Minor and Major Divisions. This Tier is for players just beginning their baseball careers and will be very focused on learning the ins and outs of baseball. The creation of an A Tier will help ensure the consistency of skill level in the AA and AAA Tiers and create a heightened level of competition.

No, we intend to schedule 12 Regular Season games for AA and AAA teams in Senior Rookie, Minor and Major Divisions.  It does mean that your player will likely be attending more training sessions than last year.

Player development can be accomplished in many different ways.  Coaches may choose to book time in the batting cages, schedule a work-out | conditioning session or conduct a baseball practice.  These are all considered ‘training’ and help contribute to player development.  

Last year, the AAA teams in Senior Rookie, Minor and Major all had a greater than 50:50 practice ratio.  That means that for every game they played, they held a practice.  This is the model we are looking to implement in all Divisions and Tiers.  So if you’re a returning AAA player, you can likely expect to see a similar structure to last year.  

Yes.  We recognize that spring is a busy time for families, but it’s important that players make the commitment to games AND training sessions.  If a player is unable to attend a training session, they must notify their coach in advance.  

Yes, if there is a conflict with a particular practice time, the first option is to try trading practices with another team.  If that’s not possible, please contact the Scheduler and we will do our best to reschedule your practice time.  

No, scheduling time in the batting cages will be up to each individual Coach.  We highly encourage Coaches to take advantage of these newly built, modern batting cages.    

Message from your North Regina Executive

It is our sincere hope that these improvements will be received with enthusiasm and support.  There will certainly be growing pains and hiccups as we implement these initiatives, but we ask for your patience as we work through them.  If you have questions, concerns or feedback, we invite you to reach out to one of our Directors with your thoughts.