If you’re interested in improving as a player, this is the place to be. Included in this section are all the different ways we can help you improve to the highest level in England and beyond.
Below is a diagram which puts all these stages together so you can see how they fit into a pathway of development. It takes you from junior stages, all the way up to senior so if you’re serious about basketball you can plan your journey and make your goals now!
From club level, right up to representing Great Britain and even competing in the Olympics, the aim of this pathway is to give you the guidance and support you need as players to achieve your own personal goals.
Download the pathway document here.
Steps in the pathway
Regional Development Programmes
1. Under 13 Regional Development Programme (RDP)
This is the first step in the pathway, separated into U13 girls and U13 boys. If you’re interested in basketball, enjoy it and your club or school think you’re good at it, you can go for a session at your region’s open event to join the Under 13 RDP in your region. It usually starts in May, and your region will then organise coaching sessions for you and your team mates building up to a Regional Development Tournament in July where where you will get the opportunity to develop your basketball skills and showcase them in front of regional & national selectors. Find out more information on RDP’s (link).
2. Under 15 Regional Development Programme (RDP)
This is like the U13 RDP. Boys and girls from the 10 regions can go to their respective regions to try and get on the U15 programme. If you’re a player on the RPC programme (see point 4 below) you will also be asked if you want to join this programme too. It runs May to September so won’t interfere with you RPC coaching and development. You will work towards your own Regional Development Tournament for U15 boys and girls where you will play against all the different regions. This event is also used as part of the selection process for the U16 National Squads! Find out more information on RDP’s (link)
3. Under 17 Regional Development Programme (RDP)
Just like the U13 and U15 programme, this focuses on both improving your individual skill and working as a team and works towards the Regional Development Tournament in September. Again, it runs from May-September and is part of the selection process for the U18 National Squad. If you’re already in a national squad though, you can’t get on this programme too – that would just be greedy!
4. Regional Performance Centres (RPC)
This is a different type of regional programme, for U13, U14 and U15 boys and girls which specifically focuses on individual player development. This one involves no competition activities but concentrates on making you the best player you can be, so you can then progress and take that into a team environment. It runs from October to May, and you can be nominated by your club to go and take part and hopefully get on the programme...and even if you’re not quite ready we transfer you back to your club to get even better and then ask you back later on in the season! Find out more information on RPC’s (link).
5. Under 15 National Development Programme (NDP)
When we select the U16 national squad members from the Regional Development Tournaments, we also select another group of players which have the potential to play for England, and we think it is worth investing some of our amazing coaches’ time and efforts into to help them get there. If picked, we will give you experience of the national programme, and even play in international games...you will then go back into the U15 Regional Development Programme (step two) and again play in the regional tournament so you can hopefully get picked for the Under 16 National Squad. Find out more information on NDP’s (link).
6. Under 17 National Development Programme (NDP)
This is exactly the same as our U15 programme above. When we choose the U18 National Squad, we also choose a group of players who we think are really close to playing at international level. We give you some international match experience, focus on the highest skill level and then when you play in the Regional Development Tournaments the season after, we like to think you’ll be in our U18 national squad list!
7. Under 16 National Squad
Around 30 players are chose from the U15 Regional Development Programme (step two) and the dream is to be selected for the European Championships. Fear not though, there are other ways to play the highest level of basketball at this age. The U15 and U17 National Development Programmes give you the best coaching we can offer and you still get international game experience, and another chance to be names in the squad! Or our AASE (link) programme is focussed of the development of players at this age and some of the best players to come out of England have been through the AASE system!
8. Under 18 National Squad
Just like the U16 squad, around 30 players are selected from our regional programmes, with the ultimate dream to play in the European Championships and then progress out of our pathway into the professional leagues and the play for GB.
Some of it might seem a bit baffling, there are a lot of ways to play basketball and progress to the highest level. But we think that’s a great thing, there’s not one way to make it to the top – there are loads! We want to give every player wanting to play at the highest level every possible chance to be able to. And just so we’re sure – you don’t have to do them all! If at 16 you realise you’re the next Dan Clarke, your school, club, region and us at Basketball England have the ability to make sure you end up in the right programme for you.