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 Baseball Coaching Approach
How to Put it Together

youth baseball coaching tips

What legacy is your baseball coaching approach going to leave on your players? What imprint will your time with your players have on them throughout their lives?

Will you leave a legacy with your players that they will remember years later?

Do you remember the teacher that left a big impact on you? Most everyone did have one that really made a positive influence. You can look back years later and feel the positive virtues and attributes that helped shape the person you are today.

Do you have a youth sports coach that left a major impact on you today? Maybe and maybe not. High impact teachers with a positive baseball coaching approach are few and far between.

“My hands are small; please don’t expect perfection whenever I make my bed, draw a picture or throw a ball. My legs are short; please slow down so that I can keep up with you.” Dr. Leman: A Childs 10 Commandments to Parents.

The Whole Baseball
Coaching Approach Package

Few sports coaches have the whole package. What do I mean by the whole package? Well of course nobody is perfect. We all have flaws.

The baseball coaches with the whole package will have a good grasp of some basic coaching strategies and people skills. They may not be an expert in any particular area or the X’s and O’s or giving baseball signs but coaches with the whole package are pretty good at several areas of teaching ability and leadership skills.

Baseball coaching is 15% sport knowledge and 85% people skills. Parents want their youth sports coaches to be positive role models for their children. Baseball parents are trusting you to do the right things.

Unfortunately most youth baseball coaches have never been trained in teaching methods or in baseball skills instruction.

So what do youth baseball coaches turn to the yelling, hollering and criticizing approach because that is all they are really good at.

They often fall short in being able to teach hitting, throwing, fielding, baserunning or pitching. They do not really know when to bunt, hit and run or call a pitchout.

Many choose to mask their shortcomings by yelling, hollering and criticizing their players. They often fall short in people skills because they feel if they do not win the pennant they are a failure. My baseball coaching approach will positively change the way you look at dealing with your players and baseball parents.

Four Easy Steps to a Respected
Baseball Coaching Approach

coaching baseball hitting

1. Are You Able to Plan Practices that Players Like to Attend? 

Baseball is hard. Baseball is difficult to play. Baseball takes a lot of time and effort to develop skills.

Do You Know What the trick is to making practices meaningful, attractive and full of player development? Here I lay out plenty of helpful approaches, drills, templates and formats to make practice a blast. 

Can you Create a practice plan that includes skillbuilding?  One of the reasons kids play ball and parents sign them up is to improve their skills. Are you maximizing every opportunity to build player skills?

Can you Keep the tempo fast and furious?  Can you eliminate standing around? Do you know how to maximize the repetitions during practices? Or are boring the kids the death during practices?

Do you set up Scrimmages often?  Are you able to keep the baseball practice plan in high gear? How to make practice practical and a blast.

Your baseball coaching approach should include baseball practice planning organizational skills.

2. Teach More Than the Game
Adding to a Quality Baseball Coaching Approach

Everyone wants to win. That is our nature to be competitive. It is fun to win. Winning is a blast. Losing is not a fun feeling and hurts our soles.

Focusing solely on wins and losses can become frustrating for everyone. I love to win just as much as anyone. I choose not to focus on winning though. I go a little different direction. Take a look at the way I approach baseball in dealing with winning and losing.

It takes the monkey off the players back. It tells them that we propably will not win them all but if we do this one thing we will likely win more that we lose.

I choose to look for certain things during ball games and practices to highlight. Things that I want to happen often will be reinforced so hopefully players will continue to realize that little things are important. 

Great teachers are able to shape their students into doing the behaviors they want them to do and remove the behaviors they do not want their students to do.

If you want your players to pull for their teammates then you have to share with them the type of characteristics you are expecting and then praise them when it happens and wean them off the behaviors you do not want to see.

Years later you may forget where you finished in the standings. It is hard to remember who won the World Series from year to year so the little things are the long lasting lessons that carry players later in life like how to be a good teammate.

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3. Be a Good Role Model:
The Power of Influence as a Youth Baseball Coach

I am sure you all have seen or heard the really loud coach. If not you probably will. Many coaches, I believe, think loud and often means you really know what you are doing. Loud does not automatically mean you are a good coach. In fact some of the loudest coaches are the worst coaches. But they might and often fool the parents.

The parents believe the lies by saying, “Did you hear the coach yelling out all those instructions and corrections. He really chewed out that player—boy he must really know what he talking about.”

Enthusiastic coaches are fine. Here are some big differences in loud and enthusiastic. Pay attention to tone of voice too. Look at my checklist for quality coaches. 

Coaches: There is the right way to communicate with your players and a wrong way. I can help you out with the right way to treat players. 

You never want to...    This one tip every coach should know when communicating with your players. 

Be a good role model. What is a good role model? Find out more about role models and positive coaching. You would be amazed at the power and influence you have as a youth baseball coach. It can be pretty or pretty ugly. 

“I need encouragement to grow. Please go easy on the criticism; remember, you can criticize the things I do without criticizing me.” Dr. Leman: A Childs 10 Commandments to Parents.

4. Treat Players With Respect
Do You Know the One Tip Every Coach Must Know?

A few baseball coaching peers have asked me how I can be so positive, patient and calm with my players? Simply because I respect my players and the effort they put out.

There is one thing you need to know if you are going to be able to survive as a youth baseball coach or a baseball parent. When you know what it is and understand what baseball players are going through you quickly have a whole new outlook at baseball players.

Knowing this one thing should change your coaching approach and style. You can earn respect by seeing the game through a different lense. This will be a game changer in your dealing and interactions with your players.

Even if you have your own kids on the team and you know how to talk to them with the right approach you can have a really healthy respectful relationship. 

Shape your positive baseball coaching approach with a high level of respect for the effort your players put out.

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Coaching little league baseball & youth baseball can be a blast or could be a  Tough Gig.

Who in their right mind would come back year after year and have teasing baseball practice and never improve their baseball skills? and get welled at by adults?

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Youth baseball carers are short-lived so lets make it count for our players. What do players really want out of playing baseball?

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