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Category: Baseball (Page 1 of 15)

Baseball Parenting: Fostering Growth, Resilience, and Sportsmanship

Parents can help play a crucial role in shaping a child’s experience and success in baseball.

When kids take up baseball, parents can provide support and guidance that not only enhances their athletic abilities but also fosters essential life skills.

Encouragement, patience, and promoting a positive sportsmanship culture are vital elements in baseball parenting.


First of all, baseball parenting is about providing unwavering support and encouragement to young athletes, especially at younger ages.

Kids often face challenges and setbacks in the sport, and it is crucial for parents to be a source of motivation during these times.

Remember – even the best players fail 7 out of 10 times at the plate!

Celebrating their successes and offering words of encouragement when they encounter failures helps build their confidence and resilience – and in many cases makes them want to work harder to get better.


Secondly, patience is a virtue that baseball parents must absolutely embrace.

The development of baseball skills takes time and practice. Understanding that progress is gradual helps parents avoid placing undue pressure on their children.

By maintaining a patient and supportive approach, parents create an environment where young athletes can learn at their own pace, explore the game, and improve without feeling overwhelmed.


Furthermore, promoting a positive sportsmanship culture is essential for the baseball parent.

Encouraging respect for teammates, umpires, coaches, and opponents…and adherence to the rules of the game instills values that extend beyond the baseball field.

This sounds cliché, but teaching children the importance of good sportsmanship helps them develop strong character traits, such as integrity, humility, and empathy, which they can carry into other aspects of their lives.


Lastly, it is essential for parents to strike a balance between involvement and allowing children to experience the sport independently.

While guidance and support are crucial, parents should also give their young athletes space to learn from their own mistakes and develop their decision-making skills.

Independence and autonomy in the game can empower kids to take ownership of their progress and achievements, fostering a sense of responsibility and self-reliance.

In Conclusion

Baseball parenting is a critical aspect of a child’s development in this most difficult sport.

Encouragement, patience, and promoting a positive sportsmanship culture contribute to a nurturing environment that allows young athletes to flourish.

By offering solid support, understanding the importance of patience, and instilling essential values, parents can play a vital role in their children’s baseball journey while imparting lifelong lessons that extend far beyond the confines of the baseball field.

Staying Ahead: Off-Season Baseball Workouts

Do you want to take your baseball skills to the next level? Off-season workouts are a fantastic way to stay in shape and improve your game, even when the regular baseball season is over.

Let’s look at some fun and effective off-season baseball workouts that can help you stay ahead of the competition and make the most out of your time off the field.

Strength and Power Training

Building strength and power is vital for baseball players. It can help you throw harder, hit the ball farther, and improve your overall performance.

Incorporate exercises like push-ups, squats, lunges, and planks into your routine to strengthen your muscles.

Additionally, consider using resistance bands or light dumbbells to add resistance to your exercises. Always remember to prioritize proper form and technique to prevent injuries.

The key here is to make these workouts a regular part of your week.

Conditioning and Cardiovascular Exercises

To be your best, it’s essential to have endurance and a strong cardiovascular system…especially for pitchers.

Engaging in activities such as running, biking, or swimming during the off-season can help improve your overall fitness and coordination levels.

You can start with short distances and gradually increase your stamina over time. You might even consider joining a local running club or participating in other sports that involve running to make your workouts more enjoyable and social.

Agility and Speed Drills

Baseball requires quick reflexes and agility. Utilize drills that focus on improving your speed, footwork, and reaction time.

For example, set up some cones or markers and practice running through them in various patterns. You can also try ladder drills, side shuffles, or jumping exercises to enhance your agility.

These drills will help you become more nimble on the field, whether you’re fielding ground balls or chasing down fly balls.

Flexibility and Stretching

Maintaining flexibility is crucial for preventing injuries and improving your range of motion.

Incorporate stretching exercises into your routine, focusing on your shoulders, hips, legs, and core. Consider activities like yoga or Pilates, which can improve flexibility while also providing relaxation and mental focus.

Make sure to warm up before stretching and avoid pushing yourself too far to prevent strains or muscle pulls.

Mental Training and Rest

Baseball is not just about physical strength; it also requires mental toughness and focus.

Take time during the off-season to work on your mental game. Visualize yourself succeeding in different baseball situations, practice positive self-talk, and set goals for the upcoming season. Read a books from Dr. Patrick Cohn or H.A. Dorfman or reach out to Austin Byler

Additionally, remember the importance of rest and recovery. Take days off to allow your body and mind to rejuvenate, as this will help you come back stronger and more motivated.

In Conclusion

Off-season baseball workouts are an excellent opportunity to improve your skills, stay in shape, and get a head start for the upcoming season.

By incorporating conditioning exercises, strength training, agility drills, flexibility exercises, and mental training into your routine, you’ll be well-prepared to take on the challenges on the baseball field.

Remember to have fun, stay committed, and always prioritize safety while engaging in off-season workouts. With dedication and hard work, you’ll be ready to shine when baseball season comes around again!

From Fragile to Fearless: How to Build Unbreakable Toughness

As parents and coaches, we have a unique opportunity to help our athletes develop skills and traits, both on and off the field.

And mental toughness is one of the key characteristics that should be on everyone’s focus list.

“Building toughness and focus in youth athletes requires a multi-faceted approach that includes physical conditioning, mental training, teamwork, and selflessness.” Brad Myott, Nitty-Gritty Baseball

I’m linking to a great article for coaches and parents from Brad Myott at Nitty-Gritty Baseball and I’d invite you to check it out here

A few excerpts:

Model a Growth Mindset

A growth mindset is the belief that one’s abilities and intelligence can be developed through hard work, practice, and perseverance. In contrast, a fixed mindset is the belief that one’s abilities and intelligence are fixed traits that cannot be changed. In order for our player’s to develop a growth mindset, we must model it for them on a consistent basis.

Set Challenging Goals

Setting challenging but achievable goals can help build toughness in young athletes by providing them with a sense of purpose and direction. Encourage your players to set goals that are specific, measurable, and challenging, and help them create a plan to achieve those goals. Celebrate their progress along the way and help them stay motivated and focused on their goals.

Practice Mental Toughness Through Mindfulness

In recent years, mindfulness has gained popularity as a tool for promoting mental health and well-being. However, its benefits extend beyond stress reduction and relaxation; mindfulness can also help youth athletes build mental toughness. By learning to focus their attention and regulate their emotions, athletes can develop greater resilience, confidence, and perseverance on the field.

Again, I highly recommend that you view the entire article here…

How To Re-Focus In Competition After A Mistake

Every athlete makes mistakes; however, not all athletes rebound from them.

How do you deal with mistakes during a competition? Do you quickly refocus on your game, or do you dwell on mistakes for too long?

As I’ve mentioned previously, one of my favorite athletic mental coaches is Dr. Patrick Cohn of Peak Sports Performance. Dr. Cohn is a sports psychologist out of Orlando Florida.

Dr. Cohn has written an article recently on how to overcome mistakes in your mental game. I’ve posted it here…

Why focusing on mistakes interferes with athletic performance:

1. Fearful of making mistakes can paralyze athletes or cause athletes to be hesitant in competitions and lead to the same mistake you seek to avoid.

2. Ruminating about mistakes fosters negative emotions, lowers confidence, and interferes with decision making.

3. Dwelling on one mistake mentally takes you out of the game. You are no longer fully immersed in the present moment.

When you fail to refocus after a mistake, you give your opponents a significant mental edge.

How to counter mistakes:

1. Understand mistakes are a part of the game – Every athlete makes mistakes from time to time. There is no perfect performance or perfect athlete.

When you accept this fact, you will not be so hard on yourself after making a mistake in a competition. In addition, you will be more willing to take risks during a competition.

2. Let go – When you focus forward, you lessen the impact of mistakes. Letting go of mistakes keeps your confidence intact and prevents negative emotions from taking over your game.

3. Refocus on the next play – The goal is to minimize the amount of time between making a mistake and immersing yourself back in the game. The mental skill of refocusing is the hallmark of elite athletes.

In the AFC Championship Game, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes fumbled the ball in the third quarter, giving the Cincinnati Bengals the ball on their 45-yard line. The winner of this game would advance to the Super Bowl.

Instead of panicking, Mahomes remained poised and finished the game with 326 passing yards and two touchdowns, leading his team to a 23-20 victory.

After the victory, Mahomes talked about his mindset after the fumble.

MAHOMES: “I think when you’ve been in some big games now a couple of years in a row, you’ve learned from your mistakes, and I felt like the year before, I let one mistake kind of compound into two, three, or whatever it was. Whereas this game, this last one, instead of worrying about, ‘Man, I made a huge mistake when we probably could’ve had a good chance of giving ourselves a big lead,’ (the mindset was) let’s not magnify it. Let’s move on to the next play.”

The mistake itself is not the problem. The issue lies in the inability to react with composure after the mistake.

Since focusing is a skill, you can learn to become proficient in your ability to refocus. When you learn to refocus quickly, you will feel confident you can rebound after a mistake in stressful circumstances.

Acknowledge the mistake without self-judgment. “Instead of saying, “I’m so stupid for throwing an interception” tell yourself, “Look for the open receiver or scan the field for receivers in single coverage.”

Remind yourself that the mistake is in the past and you can’t change it or get it back–you can only move on to the next play.

How To Mentally Recover In The Middle Of A Game

man with white t shirt running to baseball home

As I’ve mentioned previously, one of my favorite athletic mental coaches is Dr. Patrick Cohn of Peak Sports Performance. Dr. Cohn is a sports psychologist out of Orlando Florida.

He’s always teaching on mental toughness – as well as the techniques athletes can use to grasp it.

What improves a baseball player’s ability to turn his performance around in the middle of a game?  This is the topic that Dr. Cohn addresses in this article.

Some excerpts…


Multiple mental factors affect an athlete’s ability to turn around a game, such as perspective, emotions, focus, and thoughts…

One mental factor often overlooked is the role of memories. Memories can be your friend or foe and shape how you respond in the middle of a game.

Memories flow in and out of your mind throughout a game. Sometimes, you are aware of those memories, while other times, those memories are just below our conscious awareness.

old phots in a brown box

The memories we grab on set into motion a series of mental and physical reactions that affect how you perform during a game.

A Real World Example

Let’s set the stage… Your team is down two runs in the ninth inning. Earlier in the game, you were fooled on several off-speed pitches and struck out twice. Now you are at the plate with the game on the line, bases loaded, and two outs.

At this point, thoughts and images fill your head. Memories of striking out preoccupy your mind. You remember how embarrassed you were chasing balls out of the strike zone. 

You are afraid of “failing” again. You think, “I’m going to be the reason we lose.” You feel so much pressure that you are a bundle of nerves at the plate. You have difficulty getting a good read on the ball and can’t focus on the pitch.

man sitting on bench near track field while sun is setting

This is a similar experience of a player who responded to our Softball and Baseball Mental Toughness Survey:

“How can I continue to stay focused after a bad at-bat or several errors that could cause my team to lose? I feel I am unable to keep composure and confidence in these situations.”

Do you see how memories affect confidence and composure? You are thinking about striking out. You remember past errors. If you grab onto different memories, you will perform better.

How about thinking about the time you made the clutch hit in a game and drove in a couple of runs? Or the game you bounced back after an error to make a tremendous play on the field.

For More

I’d invite you to read the entire piece here…

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