Published on December 18, 2008
Pitch Count Athlete-Centered Arm Safety Baseball Canada November 2008
What is LTAD ? • Optimal training, competition and recovery programming with relation to biological development and maturation • Equal opportunity for participation and competition • Athlete centred, coach driven and administration, sport science and sponsor supported
Athlete - Centered
The Best Sport Science Available
Innings Pitched • Easy to manage • Has been the traditional approach • Within Canada – we have several different sets of rules • ‘Innings’ does not relate directly to arm safety – Coaches currently manipulate the system without regard to arm safety – We can have 3 pitch innings & 30 pitch innings – treated the same Pitch Count Approach – An Athlete-centered Approach to Arm Safety
Background In preparation for our LTAD implementation, Baseball Canada took the following steps: • Conducted a ‘Pitch Count Pilot’ with Baseball Alberta assistance during the summer of 2007 • Consulted medical research done on the subject of arm safety and impact of ‘loading’ on pitcher’s arms in the last 5 years • Consulted the work of other organizations regarding arm safety and pitching rules Pitch Count Approach – An Athlete-centered Approach to Arm Safety
Research Tells Us?
Research – most recent • Risk Factors in Adolescent Baseball Pitchers Olsen SJ, Fleisig GS, Dun S, Loftice J, Andrews JR. Risk factors for shoulder and elbow injuries in adolescent baseball pitchers. The American Journal of Sports Medicine 34:905-912, 2006. • Olsen et al. examined 95 adolescent pitchers who had shoulder and elbow surgery, and 45 adolescent pitchers who never had a significant pitching-related injury. The adolescent pitchers ranged anywhere from 14 to 20 years of age. The study compared their responses to a survey to determine risk factors associated with pitching injuries and surgery.
When a pitcher regularly threw with arm fatigue, he was 36 times more likely to require surgery
› 8 months of competitive pitching during a year, he was 5 times more likely to be in the surgery group.
More than 80 pitches in a game, he was 4 times more likely to be in the surgery group
Research Tells Us? Fatigue –major cause of injuries # of pitches (long term damage) Proper rest and regeneration ignored
Not Significant Factors • Private pitching instruction • Coach's chief concern • Exercise programs • Stretching practices • Relieving frequency, or • Age at which pitch types were first thrown
What did the pilot tell us?
Survey - Pilot in Alberta What was the most difficult item as far as managing the Pitch Count Program in the 2007 season? • Based on the schedule and playing too many games in a short period of time. • Tracking and Counting Pitches. • Finding Volunteers to Count Pitches. • Consistency in the Rules and Regulations. • Interpretations of the Rules & Regulations. • Following the Pitch Count Numbers Grid. • Other:_________________________________ Pitch Count Approach – An Athlete-centered Approach to Arm Safety
Feedback – Survey Results The following were the 3 responses shown as the most difficult to manage: • Tracking and counting pitches • Finding volunteers to track pitches • Consistency in the rules and regulations Pitch Count Approach – An Athlete-centered Approach to Arm Safety
Survey - Pilot in Alberta What was the most Positive item as far as managing the Pitch Count Program in the 2007 season? • Developed more Pitchers and found some diamonds in the rough • Arm soreness/injuries were less this year • I had more fun as a coach because it felt like I was managing my pitchers better this year • As a coach I appreciated the educational information that came along with the Pitch Count Program • It made for very exciting games and it kept the players engaged a majority of the time • There was more parity in competition this year. (Teams were on more of an even playing field) • Other: Pitch Count Approach – An Athlete-centered Approach to Arm Safety
Feedback - Survey Results The following were the 3 responses shown as the most positive results • Exciting games / kept the players engaged a majority of the time • More parity in competition • Developed more pitchers / found diamonds in the rough Pitch Count Approach – An Athlete-centered Approach to Arm Safety
Recommended Safety Grid Age 9-11 Age 12-13 Age 14-15 Age 16-18 Rest required 1-25 1-30 1-30 1-30 None 26-40 31-45 31-40 31-44 1 day 41-55 46-60 41-59 45-64 2 days 56-65 61-75 60-74 65-79 3 days 65-75 76-85 75-90 80-100 4 days 75 85 90 100 Maximum
Additional Safety Rules • Pitcher cannot pitch in 3 consecutive days. • Pitcher, when removed from the position, may play other defensive positions; however, he / she CANNOT play the position of catcher during the remainder of the day. • A player cannot play the position of pitcher and catcher in the same game. Once he / she catches in a game, he / she cannot take the pitcher’s position in the same game. • A pitcher, once removed from the position, may not return to pitch in the same game. • A pitcher may not pitch in more than 2 games in a day • These rules apply to the pitcher – when a pitcher plays for more than 1 team, his pitch counts shall be cumulative, that is, if he / she is on a rest period arising from a game with Team A, the counts still apply to games involving Team B.
We get questions????? • A pitch is defined as an official pitch made during play in the game. • If a pitcher reaches the maximum pitch count during an at bat, he / she can finish that hitter and the change made at the next stoppage. • Pitchers that play in an age category above their own age group, e.g., 14 playing Midget, shall be governed by their actual age. Coaches shall be responsible for monitoring this and will be liable to penalties for any violation. • The home / host team is responsible to appoint an official scorekeeper to keep track of the pitch count for all pitchers during a game. That record shall be the officially recognized pitch count for that game. • Intentional walks will be included in pitch counts.
Yabut… . …..we’re different
ARE WE REALLY
Athlete Centered System
LTAD Report on Baseball Issues on Current System • 150 different systems – no relation to LTAD principles • No Best Practice review • Training & Competition system – climate based • Competition / Practice / Recovery ratios • Competitive imbalance Baseball Canada – LTAD Impact – November 2008
Change and Innovation......
Innovation comes from our differences Accepting the ideas of others Being open to change
But we must be able to measure the success of any proposed changes
Seeking Innovation Based on research / sport science Tested (pilots) Based on LTAD Principles Applied system wide
So you want to throw a curve ball?????
All On the what we same page have learned
One Vision, One System, One Country One Team Athlete Focus Administration Stage Consistency Appropriate Support Development Science Coach Based Driven
WE ARE DEVELOPING THE PLAN Baseball Canada – LTAD Impact – November 2008
Key 3 Safety Baseball Canada – LTAD Impact – November 2008
The Baseball Canada Pitch Count Athlete-Centered Arm Safety Guidelines
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