Why Baseball Coaching Resolutions are Necessary
I have coached baseball for 26 years now. It would be easy to get complacent and forget to have any baseball coaching resolutions. It would be easy to believe I know enough, after all that time. But, the more I coach, the more I realize how much more there is to learn. I still find new baseball drills and baseball coaching techniques that work with students. One never knows what may click with players, so reading and watching new material is essential. Just as important is learning new ways to reach players with tips that motivate.
First, reflection on the previous year is the first step for forming new baseball coaching resolutions. Next, coaches should find new resolutions because they renew the excitement and provide a coaching road map for the new season.
10 Baseball Coaching Resolutions for the New Year
- I will prepare. An excellent first resolution for all coaches is to never just wing it, a coaching no-no, no matter how long one has been at it. I strive to prepare for every baseball practice session with written details for the allotted time frame.
- I vow to follow “genius.” Nothing inspires more than reading, listening or watching things from or about fascinating people. It may be just a song or movie about anything that inspires to try for better. Everyone has at least a spark of genius inside of them. The difficult part is finding it and getting it out. Inspirational words from sports coaches like Tony Dungy, Joe Maddon, and John Wooden inspire me to delve deeper.
- I must find more inspirational stories, so I never run out of them. My students used to seem a little intimidated by me, and I am not an intimidating person. It is natural for youth to feel a bit cautious around adults. But, once I began telling stories with a message, kids act different now. I guess they feel they know me more and are more comfortable around me. Cool! The other interesting thing is they show disappointment when I do not have a short story for them.
- I will learn every player’s name and remember it. Addressing players by name goes a long way towards giving them confidence. I have to do a better job of learning names of players immediately and remembering them. That is not an easy chore when working with many kids weekly.
- I vow to give out more handouts. Players do not learn with words alone. Coaches should give out written information, at least occasionally. Any tangible things that bolster their learning is good. It is also a sign of a caring coach. Also, kids enjoy receiving things even if it is just homework assignments.
- I will write things on walls more. Coaches should write down and post the key coaching tips for the day’s session. Written words for player viewing give a visual to what coaches speak about. Putting a visual with the spoken word helps learning and remembering.
- I will never forget to give parents credit for standout child behavior. Just as athletes like to hear praise, parents do too. It is good coaching practice to say something positive that gives parents credit for their kids’ behavior or play. “You have done an awesome job; your son’s eyes are always on me, when I speak,” is an example of praising the parent. The best thing is they will relay that observation back to their child, making both feel good. This strategy is especially important for parents who tend to be hard on their child.
- I will continue to praise kids in front of their parents. Like above, when coaches see positive actions and improvement from players, they should relay that on to mom and dad. Many parents wonder how their child does. Praising kids in front of their parents is a good way of easing that speculation.
- I will not give up on any player, no matter what. Many athletes have an “un-coachable” attitude. They give the look of knowing it already or the look that their way is better than the coach’s way. They appear to not care to listen or try anything the coach suggests. It is easy to direct the coaching attention away from them and to other players with better demeanor. Coaches should not give up on them. Continuing to offer constructive advice and earned praise is essential. Coaches may become surprised when they turn into a coach’s best student, once they see you believe in them.
- I will bring the enthusiasm every day. This point should be a given, but coaches sometimes need that kick too, as the season wears on.
Of course, the toughest part of all baseball coaching resolutions is keeping them. It is often necessary to refer to them from time to time.