A Youth Baseball
Coaches Tool Kit
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Coaches Tool Kit
This page was last updated: 1/27/2011
Below are two examples of a Coaching Philosophy.  The first is for a Recreational Team, the second for a Competitive Team. They are similar, but with emphasis on different items.
A Coaching Philosophy

The statement “Success is getting a group of kids to play together, as a team, play hard, and reach their ultimate potential while having fun“ is the foundation of this coaching philosophy. While all players should enjoy their experience as part of the team, everyone on the team is expected to put the best interest of the team first, before any thought is given to individual accomplishments. No individual, coach or player, is more important than the team.

    Enthusiasm, encouragement and personal attention from the coach is a key to every player having a positive experience. Much of this comes from players developing a sense of contribution to the team. Find a role for all players and let them know they are doing a good job. You may have to be creative, but it's important to find that spot for each player. Finally, stress improvement and development. Cheer the areas where you see improvement in individuals and the team as a group. Point out with a positive approach where additional improvement is possible. Effort, enthusiasm, improvement and fun lead to a successful team. Never miss a chance to encourage, challenge and have fun.

Team pride is another cornerstone of any athletic program. Success builds pride, but so does hard work and commitment to individual and team goals. Coaches should instill in every player the belief that hard work pays off, and the harder players work, the more they will achieve. While being successful is a goal for everyone, at the same time each player should focus on effort - not outcome. A team can always control effort but seldom the outcome of a game.

Teaching and repetition are two tools used to prepare players to be the best they can be. Start with fundamentals, work on techniques and individual skills and teach team defense in depth. Take every opportunity to teach and demonstrate teamwork, sportsmanship and respect for everyone, starting with the coaches. Believing that "Perfect practice makes perfect", players should properly practice the skills being taught on a repetitive basis, so that these skills become as natural as walking and talking.

Players should set goals for themselves and the team. Goals should be challenging enough to require players to extend beyond their present skill level. Every player should have the opportunity to achieve success and/or failure in game situations. When they succeed, give them positive feedback in terms of recognition and approval. When they do not succeed, give them feedback in terms of advice or instruction.

    Success and individual growth have much in common. Successful coaches are often remembered by former players more for their lessons of life than for winning or losing. Good coaches know that the key to success is motivating their players to do their best and improve beyond apparent limitations, motivated by team goals. The best coaches know that spirit, the will to win and to excel are important things that are more important than the game itself.  A good saying to remember..... You never exceed your own expectations.

Each player’s primary competition should be on their team, not the opposing team. Strive for constant competition among pitchers, catchers, infielders and outfielders. By practicing often with excellent players, players will have the opportunity to become the best they can be. The underlying philosophy is … players compete with other players or teams rather than against other players or teams.

Mental preparation is as much a part of a coaching philosophy as physical preparation. Try to accomplish the following through mental preparation: 

Intensity       Exhibit an exceptional focus and concentration.
Composure   Keep cool under pressure.
Enthusiasm  Have fun, enjoy the game of baseball.

Finally, a coaching philosophy should include the fact that playing ball is intended to be FUN.  Strive to make practices and games enjoyable experiences that will both develop skills and provide positive life long memories for every player.



A Coaching Philosophy

The statement “Playing time is earned, not given” is the foundation of the coaching philosophy. Most teams have starters and role players. However, starters should not receive any special treatment. Everyone on the team is expected to put the best interest of the team first, before any thought is given to individual accomplishments. No individual, coach or player, is more important than the team.

What specifically does “Playing time is earned, not given” mean?  The amount of playing time each player receives will depend on his/her attitude, skill level, commitment to the team, absences, injuries and game/tournament situations.

Team pride is another cornerstone of a competitive athletic program. Winning builds pride, but so does hard work and commitment to individual and team goals. Coaches should instill in each player the belief that hard work pays off, and the harder he/she works, the more he/she will achieve. While winning is a goal for everyone, at the same time each player should focus on his/her effort - not the outcome. A team can always control effort but seldom the outcome of a game.

Teaching and repetition are two of the tools used to prepare each player to be the best baseball player he/she can be. Start with fundamentals, work on techniques and individual skills and teach team defense in depth. Take every opportunity to teach and demonstrate teamwork, sportsmanship and respect for everyone, starting with the coaches.  Believing that "Perfect practice makes perfect." players should properly practice the skills being taught, on a repetitive basis, so that these skills become as natural as walking and talking.

Players should set goals for themselves and the team. These goals should be challenging enough to require each player to extend beyond their present skill level. Each player should have the opportunity to achieve success and/or failure in game situations. When they succeed, give them positive feedback in terms of recognition and approval. When they do not succeed, give them feedback in terms of advice or instruction.

Each player’s primary competition should be on his/her team, not on the opposing team. Strive for constant competition among pitchers, catchers, infielders and outfielders. By practicing often with excellent players, each player will have the opportunity to become the best they can be. The underlying philosophy is this:  players compete with other players or teams rather than against other players or teams.

Mental preparation is as much a part of a coaching philosophy as physical preparation. Try to accomplish through mental preparation: 

Intensity      Exhibit an exceptional focus and concentration.
Composure  Keep cool under pressure.
Enthusiasm Have fun, enjoy the game of ball.

Finally, a coaching philosophy should include the fact that playing competitive ball should be FUN.  Strive to make practices and games enjoyable experiences that will both develop skills and provide positive life long memories for every player.

Note: For the differences between Recreation and Competitive teams click here.
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