Why do some players tighten up and fall apart under this kind of pressure, while others remain calm, cool, and collected? Now many of these strategies may sound like common sense to you. John Michael Kelly's latest book challenges parents and athlete's alike to look beyond traditional physical skills training and recognize the critical importance that mental skills training plays in a helping a young player become the very best she can be. They form the basis of the mental training program I use with athletes. They regret how they cheated themselves and their team because they did not start giving it their all until it was too late. While mechanics are definitely an important aspect of softball, a poor mental game can cause them to break down, especially in pressure situations. Focus on the Positive One of the most common but easily correctable mental errors is when hitters try to negate the negative. During this time she can be watching the pitcher and timing her swings with her delivery.
Consistency One of the telltale signs of being a great player is consistency. If you are looking for training videos, then you found them. Attacking is a state of mind, and is at the core of the Champion Mindset. They regret not taking advantage of practices and coaches who were willing to help them. I've met many pitching experts, had talks with them and researched the topic on my own.
How does your pitcher attack? In essence, she is turning off the thinking and analyzing part of her mind and allowing herself to trust her hands to react. I travel all over the country filming great fastpitch softball clinics just for you. By developing and reminding themselves of these four areas, your players have the mental tools necessary to cultivate and create confidence. And yet my guess is that few teenaged athletes ever ask themselves that question today, yet they sweat and toil 10-12 months each year to master their sport with hopes of glory. You are the pilot, the conductor of the orchestra, the stick that stirs the pot. Who in their right minds wants to cut their chances of scoring in half? Steve Silverman is an award-winning writer, covering sports since 1980. Most problems occur when a hitter is still thinking and analyzing when she steps into the box.
Or you may pound the ball in with a screw twice, go way out with a curve, come back with a screw or inside rise, then back out with the curve for strike three! High school freshman-to-seniors are welcome. Make them prove they can stop you from the first pitch. Great players have the poise to handle pressure situations rather than tensing up, becoming frustrated, or playing scared. Not every situation with a runner on 1st and no outs or a runner on 2nd and none or one out is the same. Always push the defense to make mistakes. Commitment is the single most important factor that differentiates champions from the average. Trusting means that the player has a clear mind and is focused only on the release point of the pitcher so that she can pick up the ball as early as possible and see it well.
You can take a full 30 days before you decide one way or another even though I'm positive you'll see results in your very first game. Normally, pitchers receive the ball back from the catcher, go to the back of the pitcher's circle, turn around, make sure their hands are separated, step on the rubber, and then wait the same amount of time before beginning the pitching motion once the home plate ump indicates the pitcher should start. When players work hard in the cages, off the tee, in soft toss, and on the field during practice, they earn the right to feel confident during the game. However, suffice it to say the best pitch is always strike one and the best out is always the lead off batter. This breath should symbolize to them that they are emptying their mind of the thinking and analyzing and are now stepping in with a calm and clear mind. For without the proper motivation your athlete will not possess the burning desire necessary to do what it takes to elevate their game so he or she can dominate on game day and stand out from the crowd. There are other common pitching injuries, most involving the shoulders, elbows, and tendons that connect muscle to bone.
Statistically, outside pitches result in more strikes than inside pitches. Too often hitters drag thoughts of previous bad at bats into their present focus. Give a good target to your pitcher…It helps! Unless your team is so horrible at swinging the bat that they have no chance of putting the ball in play, you are better off trying to hit that runner around and in. My latest team just came back from Nationals as we breezed through Districts, States and Nationals with a combined 17-4 record against the absolute best competition anywhere! Have your players list the compliments and encouraging words that have been said about their games. High inside pitches tend to back the batter off the plate and then can be followed up with an outside pitch. Learn how to get great leads. These words actually register in their minds as Strike out and Swing at bad pitches.
Yet there is a question as to whether it really makes sense to automatically lay down the bunt when you get a runner on base with no outs, no matter the quality of the opposing team or where you are in the lineup. How great would that feel to you and your girls?! Get excited about laying down a great sac bunt or moving the runner s over! Confidence is earned and built through hours of hard work and gallons of sweat. If they are standing up in the box without bunting, I usually call a high fastball. Like Ken, I think you may have missed another less obvious aspect of the over bunting thing. To contact the team, write at Juli. Each day they are presented with numerous opportunities to become the players they would like to be.
If you call for the change-up often enough, the power hitters soon realize that they would rather take some power off their bat than strikeout. Sounds like some fun reading. Find the hitter's weakness, work the count to your favor even allow a few foul ball swings , then drop the hammer with your best pitch in whichever location the hitter is weakest! They can commit to approaching drills with a positive and enthusiastic attitude or they can choose to be lazy and cut corners. I needed to better judge who and when to tell to swing away. Test the limits of the strike zone with where you set up your glove.