You’re either moving toward or away from your goals

With softball (like so many other sports) turning into a 12-month pursuit, it’s easy to let a sort of malaise slip in. After a while, players tend to walk through their drills somewhat mindlessly, going through the motions but not really accomplishing anything.

That is such a tremendous waste of time. If you see that going on, here’s something to try. Take a hitter (for example) aside, and ask her what her goals are. Ask her to put a specific number on her hitting goal, such as when she looks at her stats at the end of the year what batting average she’d like to see next to her name. (Make sure it’s realistic.)

When she gives you the answer ask her one simple question: Is what you’re doing here today moving you closer to or further away from that goal? Because the truth is you’re either getting ahead or falling behind. If she has a number in mind and her actions aren’t moving her toward that number, then what is she doing out on the field?

Many players don’t think that way. Especially these days, people tend to live in the here and now. They don’t think in terms of moving toward something. Yes, you can set goals and all that at the beginning of the season, but often those goal sheets get stuffed into the bags along with the articles and directions to the next game, never to be seen again — or at least until it’s time to clean out the ol’ bat bag for next year. But they have to start thinking that way, seeing their actions today as part of a chain of events that lead to a conclusion. The big question is what will that conclusion be?

Everyone likes to be successful. But success isn’t just handed to you unless you’re Paris Hilton. For the rest of us, it requires work and effort. That’s what makes the journey so satisfying.

Keep that idea in mind. Are you moving toward your goal or away from it with what you’re doing, and how you’re doing it. It just might help take some of the monotony out of practice, and give your players a little more sense of purpose.

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About Ken Krause

Ken Krause has been coaching girls fastpitch softball for nearly 20 years. Some may know him as a contributing columnist to Softball Magazine, where he writes Krause's Korner -- a regular column sponsored by Louisville Slugger. Ken is also the Administrator of the Discuss Fastpitch Forum, the most popular fastpitch discussion forum on the Internet. He is currently a Three Star Master Coach with the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA), and is certified by both the Amateur Softball Association (ASA) and American Sports Education Program (ASEP). Ken is a private instructor specializing in pitchers, hitters, and catchers. He teaches at North Shore Baseball Academy in Libertyville, IL and Pro-Player Consultants in McHenry, IL.

Posted on June 6, 2008, in Coaching, General Thoughts. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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