Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Beginner Baseball - Notes For Coaches

By Alex Dumas
A friend of mine once said "Give a kid a bat and he'll run around hitting anything in sight including himself. Teach a kid how to bat and he may turn into another Babe Ruth." Coaching beginner baseball is not a walk in the park. Yes, you would be dealing mostly with kids but kids have different personalities too. Also, do not discount the fact that some older generations would want to try their hand on baseball too, probably because they did not have a chance when they were younger.

Let us focus more on kids. Sad to say, there are kids who shun away from baseball because they did not have the opportunity to enjoy the real fun in baseball. Coaches for beginners should be very understanding since most kids lack the emotional stability of most adults. Their emotional capacity and limited understanding should be properly addressed by the coach. If a coach fails to do this, the baseball world would lose another potential player. Always remember that each kid has potential. It is up to the coach to learn what this potential is, bring it out, and hone it to its limits.

The first thing that coaches usually deal with is fear. Most kids fear baseball because, well let's face it, your initial reaction to a ball thrown at you is to evade or protect yourself. Baseball does not involve much physical contact compare to other youth sports like basketball or football. A coach should be able to teach and guide a young one to turn fear into determination. A young player, when coached properly, would see a ball as a target and not as a weapon. My friend showed a Japanese samurai cutting a thrown apple in half to his young squad and everybody was applauding. But he was keen to add that a baseball bat is not a sword but a tool used to prevent a ball from hitting them. A coach should also be kind and exhibit lots of patience. This is no different from a parent teaching his child to read or write. Come to think of it, a coach for baseball beginners should be similar to a loving and caring parent. Their degree of strictness should be surpassed by their degree of support and passion to develop a child into a young baseball player. Showing these traits to baseball beginners would further encourage them to do well and add up to their development. The satisfaction of being able to coach someone and turn him into a great baseball player is beyond description.

For more tips and information about coaching beginner baseball, check out http://www.weplay.com.

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