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Re: Question for the day:


Posted by: Major Dan (markj89@charter.net) on Fri May 31 09:23:47 2002


So, what do you folks think of coaches who have that opinion? I've heard it from two this year, one who is known nationally, and my jaw just about dropped.
>
> The thing I've noticed in the past is that the quality of coaching in youth sports is very inconsistent. Some, if not most kids, are never taught proper fundamentals. I've always told my own kids that NO ONE knows their potential, that potential is something one discovers on his or her own, though intensive training and hard work. And also, the "fun" comes after the hard work. Most kids never get to the point of "fun", because of poor adult leadership and poor training, in my opinion.
>
> But my daughter has not hit well the past two seasons, still wants to play baseball (there are no women's leagues that I know of, so it means completing with the 13-14 yo boys), and my son has just about lost interest in baseball after two losing, mediocre seasons. (His team managers in the last two seasons ended team practices after about the fourth week of the season, with predictable results.)
>
> Maybe my kids don't belong in baseball. But as long as they want to put out the effort, I'll never stop trying to give them the opportunities.
>
> Am I wrong?
>
> Regards,
>
> Scott B.

Scott-
There are kids who shouldn't be playing baseball. They are the kids who don't love the game, don't want to be there, can't pay attention, don't try. You see them in the very young leagues until about age 8-10. They are there because the league provides 'free' baby sitting. They are the ones whose parents aren't at the games, who use it as a way to get a free hour or two.
And some kids have so little ability that they get discouraged and find other things they succeed at more and like more, so they drift away.
But there is always room for the kids who want to play. And since baseball is a skill sport, they can get better. They can learn. The smart ones can use their brains to compete with the athletic ones.

I agree that too many coaches are poor, don't and can't teach fundamentals. Baseball is a difficult entry sport. You need some skills before it gets interesting. Not the current model of how kids work but an interested parent can overcome that.
Kids also are susceptible to equating playing on a losing team with being a bad player. That's too bad. It happens usually when the coach gives too little to the kids, doesn't create a real team and then subtly blames the kids for losing because they aren't good enough.
Those coaches are poison to a kid's psyche.
My son had one of those in hockey his second year. Didn't want to play the following year. We got him to give it one more shot, he had a great coach and he fell in love with the game.

Don't get discouraged. Teach your kids to play well and they will find a team to play on.

As for your daughter, the future is in softball if she wants to play at higher levels. I think the girls who play baseball longer get more benefit when they start playing softball - the boys game forces them to learn the nuances and subtlties earlier.
What I don't understand is why girls like your daughter (there is a girl in our town as well) don't play both? don't give up baseball but also compete with the girls in softball. You get more games that way, etc. In many areas girls softball is weak compared to baseball so the experienced girls can walk right in and be very good right away. Nice ego boost! What's her reasoning for avoiding softball?


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