The softball community at a national level has recognized the decline in participation and has tried to implement change.
In 2008, Canada Sport 4 Life and Softball Canada implemented Softball’s Long-Term Player Development Model. Along with this, specific rules were created with the help of experts from across Canada for Minor Softball “based on the latest research on growth and motor development to ensure that games played by children and youth were age and stage appropriate and met the objectives for those stages of development”. Although these rules are written in the Rule Book and recommended by Softball Canada, very few of these rules are being implemented in leagues, tournaments, and provincial play across Canada.
The objective of Softball's Long-Term Player Development Guide is to provide a clear, well illustrated pathway for players to develop in softball. This pathway will give each player the best opportunity to reach their potential. Find out more about LTPD
Changing the Game Project is another amazing resource dedicated to changing youth sports. Their mission is "to ensure that we return youth sports to our children, and put the "play" back in "play ball". Their website is full of amazing resources, check out some of our favourite articles.