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About zeal

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  1. zeal


    One of our League Officers distributed a book by her uncle and I'm almost done with it. I highly recommend it. The book is "Life Lessons from Little League, A Guide for Parents and Coaches" by Vincent M. Fortanasce, M.D. Coach Fortanasce has been inducted into the Little Leagu Hall of Fame.
  2. zeal


    Thanks very much for responding and for your thoughts. The real issue I was writing about was not discipline -- I'm not intense that way (after all this is not high school or college) -- but rather mechanics and fundamentals. I'm very big on breaking down actions (throwing, hitting) and positions, and showing the players step by step on how to do it correctly. My fellow coaches do not do this, and the players appear to have gotten used to no instruction or (worse) doing it their way. Now when I come in and say you should be doing it this way, the players withdraw / feel intimidated. My issue is how much to push it. My feeling is to (1) simply back off until next season when I will manage my own team, or (2) identify those that are mature / open minded enough (not many) to accept new instruction and work with them. The others will still get attention, but I'm not gonna kill myself. I know it sounds like a cop out, but it's not worth it to me to fight with the Manager, and it's certainly not worth the risk of being yelled at / accused by parents. Do your leagues do anything re this issue -- perhaps surveying players to learn about how interested they are? Meeting with parents to set expectations? I'm thinking of suggesting these things. Your further thoughts are welcome. Thanks very much.
  3. zeal

    Winter Practice

    Brewer: I've had no experience with keeping the team together through the winter, but I can tell you what my daughter will be doing with regard to pitching. She just started pitching lessons and her coach will be working with her (as well as his other students) at the elementary school gym during the off-season. I don't know if you have a private coach (it's well worth it unless you know this stuff -- I don't and find it to be very specialized), if so check with him / her. Now with regard to what I'm doing -- I'm going to hang a tarp in the basement, measure off 35 feet, get a bucket of balls, and let her throw when she wants. We also work with weighted balls for strength and wrist snap. I hope this helps. Keep writing -- I find this board very helpful and educational.
  4. zeal


    Hello, I'm looking for a sounding board -- I've been coaching 7-10 year old girls softball for about two years with, as far as I know, good results. I confess that I have an aggressive philosophy. I played college baseball and I believe in teaching fundamentals and making sure mechanics are correct. This past summer my 8 year old daughter played on a travel team where the coaches were quite passive -- to the point where players were executing poorly (even making fundamental mistakes) and no one said anything. Example -- none of the coaches were helping the catchers (a critical position because of the unlimited stealing). My daughter was interested in this position so I went to the library, got a good video (I was not a catcher), and immediately realized that none of the coaches knew anything about the fundamentals of catching. My quandry is this -- my daughter wanted to continue to play in the fall and in order to have a team, I had to step in to coach. The players got used to the passive style, and now have me in their faces. Although I think their skills have improved, some are intimidated and uncomfortable with me. Our Manager (who was one of the coaches over the summer) has told me this. I'm ready to back off, keep my mouth shut, and simply keep the book and shag balls. I absolutely do not want any player to feel uncomfortable. By the same token, if these girls want to move on, they need instruction (even some criticism), right? What would you do? Sorry for the long message, and all thoughts, comments, etc. are most welcome. Thanks very much.