I’ve now been coaching youth baseball for almost six years. I currently run a private baseball instruction business in Westchester, New York. I started my business to make a couple of extra bucks giving baseball lessons to kids in the neighborhood. After putting up some flyers, making some business cards and getting in front of people, my hobby turned into a business.
After six years of coaching, I am now realizing that coaches at all levels have a major responsibility to their players. Baseball has so many life lessons. Whether it’s at the little league level or professional level, coaches have an ethical obligation to teach life lessons through the game of baseball. For those who do not know much about baseball, the average player called up to the plate to hit gets called out most of the time. They say if a player fails seventy percent of the time he’s considered a good hitter in baseball. Don’t we all have some sort of failures in life? When we do have successes in any endeavor it’s through hard work. Striking out happens in baseball and in life. The thing you need to tell your players is to move forward and learn from it.
The youth baseball participation rate has taken a slight dip, according to some numbers, due to the pace of play in baseball. Patience is a life skill you learn through the game. The game is played within a game. Baseball is not slow, it’s just different. Patience is a life lesson. You need to be nimble in life, but you need to pick your spots. Like in baseball, being too aggressive can give you some setbacks. Know when to attack.
Finally, baseball is a constant game of adjustments. In every game and every inning, at bat and pitch, you need to be able to make adjustments to set yourself up for success. In life, not everything is going to go your way; you need to make adjustments in order to succeed.
If you are a parent coach in any sport, you are impacting lives. Don’t take it for granted. Teach kids how to live while teaching how them how to play. Parents are the backbone of youth sports!
By Justin Sherman