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Coaching Baseball

Get the tools to coach the most difficult sport

Coaching baseball is challenging because you have to teach skills in what has been called the most challenging sports, baseball. When the best can only get a hit 35% of the time why wouldn't it be called the most difficult. Coaching it involves teaching so many different skills. It is a game of contradictions.

Baseball is unique sport. It is the only sport where the defense has possession of the ball. More than any other team sport it features the one on one battle of two opposing athletes - pitcher versus hitter. It requires tremendous quickness, power, and grace to play it well. Coaching baseball entails developing very unique and specific athletic tools.

Go To

Hitting

Super 8 Hitting System

Pitching

Fielding & Throwing

The mental game

Fitness & Nutrition

Coaching Associations

The Hitting Zone

Four Fundamental Components: Hitting, Fielding, Throwing, and Pitching

Hitting

Hitting a baseball is tremendously difficult. In a USA Today feature they determined the hardest thing to do in sport was hit a baseball. Considering that a major-league pitch can reaches speeds more than 95 mph, hitters have only 0.4 seconds to find the ball, decide where the ball is going and swing the bat.

Considering that a ball is 2 7/8 inches in diameter and a bat is not more than 2 3/4 inches in diameter at the thickest part that does not leave much room for error.

A fraction of the .4 of a second off in timing can be the difference between a fly ball and a line-drive, a hit or an out. A fraction of an inch off in the plane of the swing can also be the difference between an out, a hit, or the pitcher's best friend, a strikeout.

Coaching baseball means you have to be able to help a player determine what isn't working with their swing and help them develop proper hitting techniques. That makes coaching baseball a highly technical job.

All human actions involve three fundamental components to do that action. The actual physiology of the action, the mental strategies involved in the action, and the motivational component that is principally made up of the beliefs and values of the person.

In coaching baseball, in this particular case, coaching hitting, it is essential for a player to develop the maximum of their genetic make-up that they must have the proper mechanics (physiology), correct mental strategies, and the proper motivation characteristics. It means those coaching baseball, or hitting specifically, need to understand the mechanics of the swing, mental strategies involved in the swing, and the motivational components of great hitters.

To do that well we need expert models. This notion of modeling experts to improve training has not been implemented to great extent, even at the professional level. The challenge has always been developing the model. The sciences of Neuro-Linguistic Programming, hypnosis, and Time-Line TherapyTM Techniques enables us to do just that and over time we will see better training models.

Until then, anyone coaching baseball will have to be aware of those components and do their best to get the information that will best enable their athletes to perform at their best.

One of the issues is determining your expert model. Many of the so called hitting experts model major league players, good ones, but not the best of the best. A true model really needs to be the best of the best.

Modeling an expert involves much more than just watching video, yet that is what most professional hitting instructors do. There are excellent programs that have been developed that will be of great help in learn the mechanics of the swing as well as one very small portion of the mental approach to hitting.

In this video you can look at the swing at one of the greatest players to play the game - Albert Pujols.


All those coaching baseball or offering baseball hitting tips and instruction we recommend Science of Hitting by Ted Williams and we highly recommend the...

Super 8 Hitting System

As we looked at hitting programs to recommend to coaches one rose to the top. We could not find one that truly encompasses the complete program that would exist if behavioral modeling had been used, this one comes the closest. It also has a proven track record and its developer really knows the game of baseball. It is full of fantastic baseball hitting tips.

If you have been involved in coaching baseball for some time you probably recognize the name of Joe Brockhoff. The Super 8 Hitting System was developed by Joe Brockhoff who was a former minor league baseball player with the New York Yankees and Division I Head Baseball Coach at Tulane University for over 19 years.

Fourty-five of his players went on to play professional baseball, while hundreds of high school players, that he personally mentored, went on to play in college, including top Division-I programs. Some of his hitters improved their batting average by over 200 points.

Whether you're playing youth baseball or a grizzled veteran, his baseball hitting tips and baseball drills will work wonders for your hitting stroke and bat speed. Everyone coaching baseball from the seasoned veteran to the first-time volunteer dad should investigate this program.

Here's a peek at what's in this full-blown e-course...
  • The secrets to understanding the 7 Deadly Misconceptions about hitting. Uncover the very tactics we personally use to coach and train our baseball players…and create a true, easy-to-follow plan that puts your baseball career in the fast lane.

  • The blueprint for a rock solid training system, including the right way to go from ‘stance to finish’, so you can avoid making the mistakes that so many hitters do. The biggest mistakes made by newbie baseball players is approaching hitting without a plan. We'll give you the precise formula for success.

  • A simple and closely guarded secret on a FOOL PROOF Development System that can instantly increase bat speed in less than one week.

  • Step-by-step surprisingly simple methods you can use tomorrow to INSTANTLY improve your batting average by hundreds of points!   

  • An advanced hitting technique that builds consistency when hitting the inside and outside pitches, complete with illustrations.

  • A rarely used strategy that boosts your batting average overnight. How a hitter must train his hips to take him to the ball and make consistent contact.   

  • Drop the Bat ‘like a hammer’ and hit line drives instead of ground balls. Here we teach you the correct ‘wrist action’ a batter should be using.

  • Six crackerjack techniques on how to use the ‘stance-step’ instead of ‘step-stance’ to get maximum power during your hitting stroke.

  • How to avoid the ‘squish the bug’ misconception and what SHOULD happen during the pivot.
Listen to testimonials...




You can count us as whole-hearted endorsers of the Super 8 Hitting System.

Pitching

Pitching and defense is what wins championships. Coaching baseball well means knowing what it takes to be a good pitcher. As we mentioned in the section on hitting, pitching (as well as all athletic skills) involves the mechanics (physiology), metal strategies, and motivation behind the act.

Mechanics may be more important to great pitching than they are too great hitting. It is the mechanics that allow Tim Lincecum, at 5' 11" and 170 pounds can throw over 90 mph while there are bigger guys in college who never throw over 85. People coaching baseball must understand good mechanics of the pitcher and be able to help develop those mechanics.

Mechanics are also what allowed Roger Clemens and Nolan Ryan to be power pitchers for their long careers. Good mechanics was the foundation behind the long success of Greg Maddux. Good mechanics will prevent arm injuries. Coaching baseball at the younger levels preventing arm injuries and helping young players mature physically is your moral obligation.

When talking about mechanics stride direction and arm slot are two major pieces of the puzzle. There are many younger pitchers who never learn to use their lower bodies properly or don't have good stride direction or arm slot. Those pitchers often don't have command or end up hurting their arms.

Just as there are with hitting programs there are numerous pitching programs being offered to players and those coaching baseball. There are a number of good ones, but like with hitting, we have found their greatest strength are on the very important mechanics of the act. We do highly recommend the online clinic by Tom House.

Tom House was a very good major league pitcher and has proven to be an excellent professional pitching coach. Nolan Ryan specifically singled out House at Ryan's Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Other than Nolan Ryan's Pitcher's Bible: The Ultimate Guide to Power, Precision, and Long-Term Performance Tom House's clinic would be our most highly recommend program for pitching tips and training programs.

This clinic includes the following:
  • Over 30 minutes streaming video - Tom House instructing on Pitching Mechanics, Grips, and Drills

  • Short quizzes to test your knowledge of the material along the way

  • Delivery Analyses

  • A final quiz to test your knowledge of the material

  • A printout of NPA Mechanics Guidelines - incudes course material review and more.

  • A Course Certificate of Completion
This clinic is designed as a learning experience. The goal of the clinic is that when you complete it, you will understand:
  • How to properly set up on the mound

  • Pitching mechanics that will promote a healthy baseball pitching/throwing experience - The NPA Biomechanics Efficiency Model for pitching

  • The different grips used to throw three different pitches

  • The drills required to practice and perfect the phases of the NPA Biomechanical Efficiency ModelTM
Upon completion of the clinic the student will receive access to download the NPA Guidelines of Pitching and a Certificate of Completion for the pitching course.

In all athletic endeavors physiology is the most often looked at, analyzed, and coached aspect of the task. It is a vitally important one, but if you ignore the other two components your athletes may never reach their full potential. Listen here to Greg Maddux...


You can learn a great deal by listening and watch true experts.

In coaching baseball, as well as all sports, the mental strategies and motivational components are the least understood but in many regards the most important. It are those components that enable a Curt Shilling to pitch well in the American League Championship and World series with a tendon in his ankle temporarily surgically stitched to stabilize that torn tendon.

Fielding and Throwing

If pitching and defense wins championships then anyone coaching baseball needs to be able to help their players become good fielders. The two parts of being a good fielder are catching the ball and throwing it.

If anyone has been around baseball long enough they probably remember players, even professionals, who suddenly lost the ability to throw the ball accurately. It happened to the Dodgers Steve Sax back in 1983 and to Chuck Knoblauch in the 1990s. Both of those players were excellent fielders, but suddenly lost the ability to make the routine throw to first base.

Good fielders have great footwork, good hands, and strong, accurate arms. They get great reads on the ball and can usually cover quite a bit of ground. Mike Bordick, who didn't have great range, holds the record for short stops with 110 straight games without an error. He had great hands and a very accurate arm.

One of the most over looked part of good fielding is the footwork of the fielder. Getting in good position before fielding the ball so they have good balance, even when they have to make throws on the run.

Unlike the big two there really are no fully developed programs for fielding. Maybe that is because of all the skills in coaching baseball fielding and throwing are the easiest to watch, learn, and duplicate. Or maybe it is hitting and pitching skills that is most likely to get you noticed.

Watch these videos for great tips on fielding and throwing...

Fielding ground balls


Throwing


Outfield play

Teaching the Game and true physical education

Everyone coaching baseball, as well as all sports, has the responsibility of teaching the mental strategies of that sport as well as providing health and physical education and nutrition education.

Coaching baseball includes preparing your players mentally. The mental aspect of baseball is amazingly challenging because of the mental speed involved in hitting to the mental "down-time" of when you are in the field. Being able to maintain focus and be prepared is vital.

The Cognitive Advantage Program is hands-down the best program we have found. Let us be clear that it is not, and doesn't claim to be, the mental strategies used in the specific skills of hitting, pitching, fielding, and throwing. That type of mental conditioning is completely separate, more specific, and much harder to discover and develop.

What it does include is a complete video of a training done by Rick Harig, whose resume is quite extensive.

In this program you will learn:
  • How to assess Mental Factors

  • The Baseball Mindset

  • How to Build a Playing Philosophy

  • Definitions of Success
and how to
  • Review Playing Philosophy

  • Establish Performance Goals

  • Develop Specific Game Actions

  • Set Achievement Goals

  • Develp Timelines

  • Evaluate Success
and that is in just the first two videos! It is absolutely a must have program if coaching baseball well is your mission.

Nutrition and Fitness

Specific fitness workouts and good diets will help your athletes learn to full-fill their God given potential. Regardless of how far they progress the lessons they learn will carry them a long way. For more on nutrition and fitness you can check out our nutrition and workout pages as well as the site BASES.

Bases is an outstanding resource and you can get some specific baseball training workouts on their site.

TacFit

Coaching Baseball is no different than any other sport in that you want to have well-conditioned athletes. That will require your basketball players to workout during the season and in the off-season.

For over-all strength, flexibility and athletic training we also recommend TacFit. Understand that this program will really develop over-all body strength and athleticism, but it will not specifically train you in baseball specific movements.

Also, without YOU putting in the work and dedication you will not see the results.

Our special forces have trained their bodies to perform athletically. Natural strength that can be obtained from using your own bodyweight. You don't need large space or special equipment to train. You can do it all in only 20 minutes a day. If you know what to do.

As someone coaching baseball you can refer your baseball players to this incredible program.

Crisis response demands a physical training program that will develop tireless stamina, extreme range reactive strength, ballistic speed, the agility and coordination of a Free Runner, and active recovery and pre-habilitation.

If your players had those type of workouts do you think their athletic performance would improve? Do you think your baseball coaching would improve as your players improve? You bet it would.

So, what does this basic program give you?

    * workouts manual
    * training calendar
    * video instructions (in several formats)
    * Recovery techniques

You can add to the basic program and get all the above, plus:

    * follow along videos
    * rapid recovery and breathing techniques
    * diet plan
    * recipe book
    * video of a real training program personally run by Scott Sanderson

So, check out all the details of Tacfit and try it for yourself!

Nutrition

Nutrition is vitally important for athletic endeavors. In this current culture it is vital that those coaching baseball, or any sport, are informed about nutrition.

If your athletes do not watch their nutrition they will not be able to make the athletic gains they could if they ate properly. We have two recommended nutrition programs for those coaching baseball and their athletes.

Precision Nutrition

Precision Nutrition covers everything you need to know about nutrition. It is a comprehensive nutrition education course. It will:

1) teach you how to eat for your goal and your body. We teach you how to develop a custom nutrition plan unique to your physiology.

2) be easy to understand.

3) provide you with 1 year of 24/7 online support on their private member forum. You’ll need help, and with PN you get it – from expert coaches and nearly 40,000 fellow members from around the world.

4) provide you with a 1 year membership to their online library of articles, e-books and software. Access their complete Exercise Video Database and thousands of pages covering every conceivable fitness and nutrition topic in the Member Zone.

5) Include more than 25 goal-specific exercise programs by world-class coaches. They had the top coaches in the world develop exercise programs specifically for Precision Nutrition members.

6) Include the PN cookbook, Gourmet Nutrition Volume 1.

7) Guarantee results. They put their money where their mouth is. If PN doesn’t work for you, They’ll not only give your money back, they’ll buy you another book of your choosing!

Of all the above mentioned benefits of the program the most talked about by our members is the on-line supports. Coaching baseball thoroughly will mean getting your players involved in off-season programs. Those programs should include good nutrition education.

This is one of the best out there and is used by some of the most sought after athletic trainers in the world. For more information go to the Precision Nutrition website.

Eating for Energy

Eating for Energy is another excellent nutrition education program. For athletes and coaches, in this case those coaching baseball, it will provide your players the energy and fitness that will enable them to reach peak performance levels.

Eating for energy's nutrition education will teach you things you won't learn in traditional classes. And that is the reason we are here!

In this e-course you will learn:

1) how you can prevent cancer, cardiovascular, diabetes, and obesity by making this one small change to the way you eat.

2) what the startling food consumption trends between 1970 and 2004 have done to your health.

3) why fit people can be at greater risk of disease!

4) the top 12 superfoods you should eat all the time.

5) why you may not have been successful in losing weight in the past. This one secret will change your life (not just your body)!

6) why counting calories does not work. You'll find out what does.

7) why not all fats are bad and why eating certain "healthy" fats can actually speed up fat loss, increase your energy levels, decrease your risk of cardiovascular disease, memory loss, and more... and precisely how much of them you need for optimal effects.

8) the miraculous food whose saturated fat burns fat in your body, fuels your energy for exercise, and prevents sickness and infections! One of the most amazing finds ever - and you can easily buy at your local grocery store!

9) how to crank up your metabolism and turn your body into a food-incinerating, fat-melting human blast furnace! Easy metabolism-boosting techniques revealed!

10) how to eat 50% more calories without storing an ounce as fat - It's true - you can actually eat more food while losing more fat using this simple, but often overlooked strategy!

11) how to boost your energy levels higher than you ever thought possible - almost instantly! (you'll notice the difference the very first day)

12) the 10 Success Habits that will get you to your goals!

13) the psychology of permanent fat loss and abundant health...Goal setting and motivation tactics that program your subconscious mind for massive success...

Follow this "secret mental training formula" and you'll be practically "hypnotized" into eating properly and working out consistently - Just imagine... no more "willpower" required! (these are the same techniques that NFL, NBA, MLB and Olympic champions pay sports psychologists hundreds of dollars an hour to learn.)

14) why obesity and most diseases do not occur in nature and discover what we're doing to domesticated animals that is making them as sick, fat, and tired as we are!

There is much more than these 14 things!

So, to learn more and order this program check out the Eating for Energy website.

Recovery

Part of the allure of steroids has not just been about strength building but it has also been about recovery from injury. Anyone coaching baseball should be aware of what is going on in terms of the "underground" when it comes to steroids and the use of amphetamines.

While it is a relatively new field the study of redox signaling molecules is a field a good baseball coach will want to be aware of. These amazing molecules are vital in the healthy functioning of our cells. If our cells are functioning properly our health will be better, our recovery will be better, and our endurance will improve. Our natural producation of these molecules seems to decrease as we age and those who are competing athletically may not produce as many as the body demands for such athletic endeavors.

If you have been coaching baseball for anytime you are hearing more and more from athletes, about the amazing benefits of supplementing with these molecules. Listen to these testimonials.

The science


Interested in learning more or want to TRY the product yourself, then go to the healtheducation site.

Baseball Coaching Associations

American Baseball Coaches Association
National High School Baseball Coaches Association

Other Baseball Sites:

Coach and Play Baseball

Become one of 200 to take part in a research project on hitting a baseball

Become one of the first 200 to agree to listen to a program that is designed to improve your ability to enter into the zone and hit better. For more details go to The Hitting Zone.

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