BSUK appoints Alan Dean as Academy and HPA Director

Tue 16 Sep 2014

BaseballSoftballUK has appointed Alan Dean, whose working background  is based on the physical and educational development of athletes in a wide range range of sports, to a new post of Director of the Academy and High Performance Academy (HPA) for both baseball and softball.

Alan was selected from a number of candidates who applied for the role, and has taken up his new post with immediate effect, as the Academy and HPA will have an opening weekend at Farnham Park on 4-5 October.


The Director role, created by BSUK to ensure better oversight and operation of the baseball and softball Academies and HPA, will involve management by Alan in three key areas:

  • Coaching – including appointing and managing coaches in specific skill areas, providing a template for National Academy and HPA practices and managing the training and development of coaches.
  • Communications – including working with volunteer Academy administrators and BSUK office staff to ensure that communications to Academy members and coaches are timely and accurate.
  • Administration – including logistics for Academy and HPA events, ensuring that the registration process is efficient and making sure that the HPA's Distance Learning Programme runs smoothly.


Alan Dean's background over the past two decades has featured the development of young athletes in several sports, from amateur level to professional sports clubs.  In particular, he has focused on the physical and educational development of athletes in football, golf, athletics, softball and baseball.  As a qualified Strength and Conditioning Coach/Sports Therapist and PGCE-qualified educator, Alan has worked full-time in Further Education while based at Football League clubs and private Sixth Form Sports Academies. 

His role has included mentoring young athletes to manage their sporting lifestyles, technical and tactical skill development and education while also managing their athletic development as a Strength and Conditioning coach.  This has involved working with England and Welsh international players and furthering the successful US college scholarship route for over 20 players to schools ranging from Junior Colleges to NCAA Division 1 universities.

Since this summer, Alan has been working as a freelance consultant and is developing a practice based in Horsham that focuses on athlete development and recovery.

Baseball and softball involvement

With regard to baseball, Alan has been an active Strength and Conditioning coach and trainer with Academy Baseball since 2006, began working with the GB Senior Baseball Team in 2007 and has attended European Championships, European Championship Qualifiers, the 2009 World Cup and the 2012 World Baseball Classic Qualifier with the team.  He has been the lead Strength and Conditioning coach for the GB Basebll programme from the Under-16s through to the GB Lions and was an Assistant Coach with the GB Juniors this past summer at their successful A Pool qualification competition in Croatia.

Alan's role within fastpitch softball has been similar.  He was recruited by GB Women's Team Head Coach Hayley Scott to act as Trainer for the team at the 2009 European Championships, where qualification to the 2010 World Championships in Venezuela was achieved, and he subsequently worked with GB Softball through 2012 at World Cups and European Championships as well as helping to develop young athletes at Academy Softball.

In 2014, Alan assisted with the development of BSUK's initial HPA programmes and managed the strength and conditioning aspect for both sports.

Aims and objectives

Alan Dean said: “I believe that I will be a valuable asset to the Academies and the HPA by bringing experience of teaching, coaching and developing individual athletes and teams from grass-roots standards to full senior internationals.

“I see the development of the HPA and now Talented Athlete Scholarship Programme opportunities through Sport England as a great springboard for both softball and baseball,” Alan continued.  “I feel that we can continue to develop the Academy and HPA programmes by encouraging and developing coaches through active CPD opportunities. There has been great work achieved over the past few years at the Academies, and by improving player and parent experiences, we can focus on the most important aspect of all – that the young people in our sports have fun and want to come back time and time again. 

“But there are challenges in having an off-season programme and in particular we face issues with the weather, facilities and the distance between the various softball and baseball families that make getting together a challenging process.

“As for the HPA programme,” Alan added, “it will provide our young people with the opportunity to understand what the commitment and responsibilities of being an elite athlete really means.  It is a difficult process being a successful young athlete, with all that life has for youngsters these days.   I hope that we can encourage and create an athlete-centred and coach-driven environment which allows the individual player to achieve their best as an athlete, a student and an adult.  We have some great people involved and it will be my privilege to work with them and encourage new coaches and players to join us on our journey.”

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