Daily Archives: September 25, 2011

Context provides incentive in softball training

One of the interesting phenomena I have observed in my years of teaching lessons is how important context is in really understanding what you’re learning and putting it to use.

That’s kind of a long-winded way of saying it seems like students seem to “get” what we’re trying to do better after they’ve had a season of playing following an off-season of lessons.

You can try to put context around lessons all you want. I know I certainly do. But once students are in the game trying to execute against an opponent, I found most understand better the reasons why we’re doing what we’re doing, and why we’re focusing on certain aspects of their skills.

Take pitchers, for example. They can look like world-beaters in lessons or practice sessions. But once there’s something on the line, i.e. they’re facing live hitters, they seem to get why we focus so much on repeatable mechanics versus the immediate results.

That can be discouraging for some — they’ve worked hard all off-season, but then in the games they’re not see the payoff right away. But for most, it seems they remember us talking about certain things, they remember themselves not putting the effort into it, and they understand that was a mistake.

Has that been your experience? Has your daughter, your students or your players struggled to put lessons into practice the first year but then come back ready to learn more and at a fast pace?

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