The skills involved in baseball and softball are a complex combination of many concepts. We feel that understanding these concepts is vital for our instructors, as well as our students. Our instructors will help players find out where they are deficient and give them an understanding of how to improve those specific areas. Any sound instructional philosophy will include the following areas of focus:
Specific body movement
Sequencing and alignment (rhythm and tempo)
Understanding the kinetic chain
Distinguishing style from sound bio-mechanical principals
Building Kinesthetic awareness
Pace and length of activity
Frequency of activity
Intensity of activity
Learner centered environment
Using all 3 learning modes
Cause and effect relationships
Backward chaining (Backward shaping)
Functional Strength and Fitness
Overall body fitness
Sport specific fitness
Free weights and machine work
Power lifts and high repetition endurance lifts
Cardiovascular and aerobic conditioning
Light weight exercises (joint integrity work)
Recovery time, frequency of training, and duration of training
Injury prevention and rehabilitation
Performance enhancing food
Positive Visualization techniques
10 Foundations of our Teaching
Our Students excel in baseball/softball because they learn in several ways. The following 10 areas are the core strengths of our teaching (see above for the entire teaching concepts and areas of focus).
Guided Discovery- This teaching technique allows students to be the focus of the instruction and allows them to become responsible for their own learning. The student is at the center of learning and the coach becomes a guide.
Use all 3 modes of Learning- Students learn visually, kinesthetically, and auditory. Our teaching methods focus on using all 3 modes of learning. Because most kids learn better visually and kinesthetically, we have implemented a state of the art professional video analysis programs that will aide our students in learning. Likewise, we have developed special kinesthetic learning devices that help give students instant feedback on their movements.
Cause and Effect Relationships- Students learn to build cause and effect relationships to further enhance their awareness of their skills. Most practice and skill development focus on outcomes only.
Kinesthetic Awareness (body awareness)- Because most people learn through feel the majority of our drills involve strategies and kinesthetic learning devices to improve body awareness.
Visualization/Positive self-Talk- To build confidence and increase performance we use techniques that work on visualization and positive self talk. This will allow players to “see” themselves excelling at a skill and in turn enhance performance.
Biomechanical Alignment-Using guided discovery, all 3 modes of learning, building cause and effect relationships, and drills that focus on sequencing, instructors can create the proper mechanics that a player needs to be successful. Instructors teach sound biomechanical principals and not a specific style. Instructors will adjust to each athlete’s personal style, while implementing and maintaining sound biomechanical principals.
Goal Setting- A player needs to know “where they are going” and what they need to improve before they can make any changes or progress in their abilities. Goal setting strategies for skill improvement, strength training, learning, and performance are a few examples what instructors can help students with. Instructors get athletes to take ownership in what they are doing. In turn athletes become self motivated and are able to manage skill development, conditioning programs, learning, and more.
Segmentation Vs Whole Learning- Our drills involve both whole and part learning theory. Most teaching philosophies only incorporate one theory (if that). We feel that to obtain maximum results then drill work needs to involve both types of learning. A large percentage of our drills are as game like (sport specific) as possible. Doing the proper segmentation drills are key for a student to learn a particular skill. Likewise, many drills are only taught to get the player from point A to point B (one position to the next). We call this “dot to dot type training”. It is very limited and extremely basic and will allow only for minimal progress. There is a “lot going on between the dots”. Our drills connect the dots!
Backward Chaining-For best results specific motor skills must be learned from end to beginning.
Focus on Biomechanics not Style- Every student that we teach is different. We will implement sound biomechanical principals with their unique style. Unlike most models or coaching philosophies we do not teach a specific style or model. We figure out what is going to work best for the individual student and incorporate sound biomechanical movements with personal style. “Cookie cutter” teaching styles do not work. Each player is unique and needs to be treated as an individual with their own personal style.