U11 Hockey Development Program (HADP) Plan
Whitemud West Hockey Association ices two teams in the U11 Hockey Alberta Development Program (“HADP”). HADP is an elite stream, considered equivalent to “AA”, and is the top level of U11 community hockey. Our program places a heavy focus on age-appropriate skill development and feeds elite hockey programs at the Canadian Athletic Club. Playing at an elite level demands a full commitment from both the player and their family.
HADP Performance Development Structure
HADP players and goaltenders can expect to significantly level-up their performance by being on the ice up 4-5 times per week. This includes team practices, games and additional on-ice skills training (i.e., power skating, goaltending training, skills sessions). Players and goaltenders can also expect to be involved in regularly scheduled off-ice training activities (i.e., dryland training, mental performance coaching).
Our skill development partners include:
Play at Home
A significant advantage to the HADP model is to be able to play in your community in front of your friends and family. Players can expect a minimum of 30-40 games throughout the season, including the regular season schedule, minor hockey week, exhibition games and tournaments. Travel to games and practices is relatively minimal, with most on-ice sessions located in the Capital region. Each team has agency to select their own tournament destinations.
HADP schedules are largely set in advance. Although games may be subject to re-tiering at the midway point of the season, re-tiering is common to all leagues and ensures that our players are competing at the most appropriate competition level. Teams may also apply to the Edmonton Federation Hockey League (EFHL) for its “weekend blackout” program.
Coach Selection Process
HADP head coaches apply for the positions and are interviewed and selected by our Vice President, Coaching. Coaching recruitment typically concludes in early February, with coaching announcements made soon thereafter. Coaches have all necessary certifications and preference is given to those with prior tools, experience and skills to lead elite athletes.
A maximum of 34 players will comprise the two teams in the HADP program. This includes 30 skaters and up to 4 goaltenders (each team will have 15 skaters and up to 2 goaltenders).
Cost Certainty and Value
The HADP program offers premium skill development at a lower cost than other elite hockey streams.
To add cost certainty for parents, Whitemud West only allows HADP teams to have one additional per-player cash call, to a maximum of $300. Additional needed team funds can be fundraised or collected from sponsors. HADP fees cover the cost of jerseys and pant shells; and support team tournament fees up to $1500.
An $825 deposit will be required by May 1st for the 20 players who are offered a spot in the HADP program after the spring Evaluation Sessions. The remaining 14 players who are selected at the fall Tryout Skates must make their $825 HADP payment by mid-October. All players must pay the remaining $825 registration fee by mid-November.
Playing at an elite level demands a significant commitment from both the player and their family. Full commitment is expected. Fees will not be pro-rated for players who take holidays or are otherwise not available.
Player Selection Process
Evaluation Sessions will take place between April 2nd and April 7th. These sessions are intended to identify the top 20 players available as determined by external contracted evaluators. As many as 20 players will be offered a position in the HADP program after these sessions, leaving approximately 14 spots open for players to compete for in the Fall Tryouts.
The cost for skaters to participate in Evaluation Sessions is $150 (non-refundable); there is no charge for goaltenders. There will be three ice times set out, however a player or goaltender is only guaranteed two ice times as cuts are made prior to the final session. Players and goaltenders who attend the Evaluation Sessions are not eligible to have these costs applied against their registration fees in the fall.
All players and goaltenders who participate in the Evaluation Sessions will be able to view their evaluation summaries upon request. This can be very valuable information to participants in informing areas for skill improvement over the summer.
All players interested in playing HADP in the fall are encouraged to consider attending our Weekly Summer Skates.
The final 14 spots in the HADP program will be determined at the Fall Tryout in August. These tryouts will again be conducted utilizing external contacted evaluators. Once the remaining players have been selected, two teams will be drafted in full by the two head coaches.
HADP Off-season Schedule – At a glance
- Players and goaltenders attend 2-3 evaluation sessions. The cost for skaters is $150; goaltenders are free of charge. Each registrant is guaranteed two sessions.
- Sessions are open to eligible players or goaltenders interested in an HADP roster spot.
- Purpose of these sessions is to identify the top 20 players for next season’s HADP teams.
- External evaluators will be used for these sessions. Player and goaltender evaluation information will be available upon request at the conclusion of the sessions.
- Players who do not attend the evaluation skates can still attend Fall Tryouts but must realize that fewer roster spots will be available at that time.
May 1 – Offer Deadline
- Up to 20 roster spots will be offered to the players with the highest evaluation scores.
- A decision to accept a roster spot must be made by the player by May 1, 2024.
- Players offered a roster spot secure a position with a non-refundable deposit of $825.
- Players are not drafted to a team at this time. Players are drafted by the head coaches after fall tryouts are complete. There is no capacity to accommodate friend requests.
June & July - Weekly Summer Skates
- These sessions will be led by the Vice-President of Player Development and strategically informed by the HADP head coaches.
- Evaluators will not be present at these sessions. The focus will be conditioning.
- Sessions are open to players and goaltenders who have either secured an HADP roster spot, or intend to try out in fall.
- Players will be encouraged to focus on improving areas identified in Evaluation Sessions.
- Sign-up will be a-la-carte style at a cost of $15 per session. These fees are non-refundable and will not be applied toward fall registration fees.
Mid August - Fall Tryouts
- The purpose of these tryouts is to identify the remaining 12-14 HADP roster spots.
- Players and goaltenders who wish to compete for the remaining 12-14 HADP roster spots will register for Fall Tryouts.
- Tryout fee is $150 for skaters.
- All U11 goaltenders will attend a technical evaluation session prior to Fall Tryouts. Those with the highest evaluation scores will be invited to attend HADP Fall Tryout There is no additional tryout cost to goaltenders.
- Players and goaltenders who have already secured an HADP roster spot are expected to attend tryouts (no tryout fee).