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Thread: Part Vent and part observation:

  1. #11
    Certified softball maniac pattar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FP26 View Post
    I agree with nearly every post made in this thread so far. But it is not limited to hitting/pitching instruction. I see it in other walks of life as well. In general people realize when they don't have the skill or knowledge to handle something on their own. So they seek out someone that has more skill or knowledge. Sometimes they find a person that can talk a good game but may not be able to provide the results. I have a friend dealing with this right now with a financial advisor. Based on the return he is getting, I would have switched advisors a long time ago. But he remains loyal and is not interested in other opinions.
    I think, in general, people are really bad at admitting they made a mistake and then moving on from it until they are forced to by circumstances which would dramatically alter their life.

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  3. #12
    I can talk softball all day ang2bmd's Avatar
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    More experienced parents please chime in. My daughter is a 2024. Plays for a top nationally recognized organization that shall remain nameless. Our current routine is hitting lesson weekly with a coach we think is teaching the right things and she seems to be responding to. Tee work 2 other days when we play about 200 balls a session...sometimes front toss it DH is available, 3 days of this when we don't play and have practice instead. 1 day off a week to be a kid. She seems happy this way. No lip or bad attitude. Are we on the right track hitting wise. We are 11u and she tears it up when we play 11u struggles some when we play 12s no more or less than other kids on her team.

    Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk

  4. #13
    I can talk softball all day flipper14's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cannonball View Post
    Please consider this as part vent and part observation. Something that has amazed me in my time in coaching both on sites like this but, more importantly to me, on teams I coach is the inability of parents/dads mostly to admit that their guru's stuff simply is not working for their child and therefore just might not be the answer. How long does it take for parents to understand this? For example, I can cite one example of a player going 0-28 and yet, the parent remained loyal to their guru and promoted said guru for others. I just shake my head at that. On these various sites, I can recall poster's who's dds or sons (I moderate a couple of baseball websites.) and they remained loyal for a very long time. These same parents then try to get others to seek out the guru. Naturally, there were the cases in the "hitting wars" where it got real nasty as some parents figured stuff out and others refused to see what was going on. (That would be on both sides.)

    As I've thought about this, the one common denominator is that the guru always promotes their stuff as the MLB Swing or the High Level Swing and assure all that will listen that they have unlocked the answer. This is followed by the mention of several MLB players or high level softball players, video of same and then some statement that the guru teaches this swing. The parent most often doesn't have the information early on to dispute these points. Still, when you see swings that are so far removed from what was shown in the video or you have swings that lack "adjustibility" and so lead to high strikeout rates, I would think that the parents would figure this out and move on. One that eats me in particular is a "guru" who teaches what I would call a 2 part swing where the hitter starts the load/unload, stops momentum after getting that foot down early and then finishes the swing having killed the running start.

    As a hitting coach, I do my best to teach the same things I taught my dd. I do my best to keep up with the changes going on. I know the history of most of the changes and the changes that aren't really new but just different takes on old but good stuff. Sometimes it is hard for me to let some stuff go and just move on. Thanks for letting me vent.
    I worked closely with a DI Power 5 program in an administrative role, coached high school varsity (stopped after my wife and I had our daughter), and started giving hitting lessons a little bit more than a year ago. I had always given free lessons until my wife told me I had to start charging something (I currently charge $30 per hour in a suburb of a major American city and often go well over the hour if I can). I now have about 30 students, about 15 of whom are regulars, but I have a "real" job too so the schedule can be a grind. I have the "he's coached multiple DI players" tag when some people introduce me, although if you've coached long enough in the right areas this can be said for just about anyone.

    However, to be honest, if you care about your students it can be an emotional roller coaster. In many ways it's like coaching and parenting as the "wins" aren't nearly as rewarding as the losses are painful. I try not to live and die with the results of every student but when one is struggling it can be tough. I have GC alerts on my phone and I really try not to live-and-die with the results of individual ABs but it's tough not to. I have one student now (12-year-old) who is talented and struggled for about a month. She's coming out of it now but I was ready to find her another instructor, and I love this kid and family. The parents were very loyal. I'm confident in my instruction but I just didn't think this girls was progressing to her natural abilities. What do you do then? How long do you try to make it work? Not easy answers.

    The very first private student I started working with last April has gone from 55 exit velocity to over 70 in a year, but she's also worked her rear end off and has made herself a very good hitter. Made all-region this year as a junior in a talent rich suburb, and will definitely play NAIA or DII as she's getting a lot of interest now. She's also taken the most lessons and put in the most time. I feel like I've had more success with my older players.

    With the younger kids I wrestle with long-term mechanics vs. short term in-game success. I feel like I could bring a 10U or 12U kid in for a lesson and just throw front toss and live pitch to her for an hour and she's going to hit better in games, but am I helping her develop a "top-level" swing long term in doing so. I wrestle with that often. Parents aren't paying me to be a BP pitcher, or at least I don't think they should be.

    As for the mention about working with players who are less gifted, I love those kids. However, I too argue with myself about if I should just encourage these kids to take on another activity because long-term softball success is just not likely, no matter how much time we spend. On the flip side, there are a few of these kids who just want to do better in rec. I do try to be honest in these cases, not a dream crusher but a dose of reality too.

    In all, my kids do improve. Would they be improving more rapidly, or less so, elsewhere? I wrestle with that...often.

    Gosh, I think I'm emotionally fragile reading this.
    Last edited by flipper14; 06-12-2018 at 05:54 PM.

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  6. #14
    Certified softball maniac pattar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flipper14 View Post
    I worked closely with a DI Power 5 program in an administrative role, coached high school varsity (stopped after my wife and I had our daughter), and started giving hitting lessons a little bit more than a year ago. I had always given free lessons until my wife told me I had to start charging something (I currently charge $30 per hour in a suburb of a major American city and often go well over the hour if I can). I now have about 30 students, about 15 of whom are regulars, but I have a "real" job too so the schedule can be a grind. I have the "he's coached multiple DI players" tag when some people introduce me, although if you've coached long enough in the right areas this can be said for just about anyone.

    However, to be honest, if you care about your students it can be an emotional roller coaster. In many ways it's like coaching and parenting as the "wins" aren't nearly as rewarding as the losses are painful. I try not to live and die with the results of every student but when one is struggling it can be tough. I have GC alerts on my phone and I really try not to live-and-die with the results of individual ABs but it's tough not to. I have one student now (12-year-old) who is talented and struggled for about a month. She's coming out of it now but I was ready to find her another instructor, and I love this kid and family. The parents were very loyal. I'm confident in my instruction but I just didn't think this girls was progressing to her natural abilities. What do you do then? How long do you try to make it work? Not easy answers.

    The very first private student I started working with last April has gone from 55 exit velocity to over 70 in a year, but she's also worked her rear end off and has made herself a very good hitter. Made all-region this year as a junior in a talent rich suburb, and will definitely play NAIA or DII as she's getting a lot of interest now. She's also taken the most lessons and put in the most time. I feel like I've had more success with my older players.

    With the younger kids I wrestle with long-term mechanics vs. short term in-game success. I feel like I could bring a 10U or 12U kid in for a lesson and just throw front toss and live pitch to her for an hour and she's going to hit better in games, but am I helping her develop a "top-level" swing long term in doing so. I wrestle with that often. Parents aren't paying me to be a BP pitcher, or at least I don't think they should be.

    As for the mention about working with players who are less gifted, I love those kids. However, I too argue with myself about if I should just encourage these kids to take on another activity because long-term softball success is just not likely, no matter how much time we spend. On the flip side, there are a few of these kids who just want to do better in rec. I do try to be honest in these cases, not a dream crusher but a dose of reality too.

    In all, my kids do improve. Would they be improving more rapidly, or less so, elsewhere? I wrestle with that...often.

    Gosh, I think I'm emotionally fragile reading this.
    Nice post. Being emotionally invested in an activity where failing 6 or 7 times out of 10 is considered great can be draining. It is bad enough for me as a parent when I only have 1 to worry about (for now..every hit my 3 year old DS gets is a HR )..cannot imagine worrying about 30+
    Last edited by pattar; 06-12-2018 at 06:31 PM.

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    Demarini & LS SUCK! CoreSoftball20's Avatar
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    Unfortunately, money drives a lot of instructors and to be honest, its very easy money if you are doing it for the wrong reasons.

    A little bs lip service to parents that have rose colored glasses on and the lessons money train can go on for a long time without having
    to show any good results. The last thing they want to do is have parents step into reality about their dd's skill set.
    "Success isn't permanent, and failure isn't fatal. Its the courage to continue that counts"
    If you need to reach me fast...text 610-417-0448

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    I can talk softball all day mudrunner's Avatar
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    To me the bottom line is, are you getting results from the hitting instruction.To get good results it needs to be enjoyable, and the instruction has to be good and easy for the kid to understand. If there is no improvement than whats the point? I know parents that send their kids to hitting lessons almost every week of the year to some renowned & successful hitting guru, and the kid still hits .200. I'm guilty of this myself to some extent, but I cannot afford a 26 lesson hitting package at some high dollar place.To these instructors/organizations it's all about the money. I am pretty blessed that I stumbled onto a pretty darn good hitting coach for my DD. She loves going, and takes something away from every session. When she's at home she works on the same drills she does at lessons, and understands the how's & why's pretty darn good for a 14 year old. This was not the case with the previous 4 or 5 instructors that she had. I think if people really knew what good instruction looked like it would be an eye opener. The problem is there seems to be more bad than good out there these days.

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    I can talk softball all day 625ender's Avatar
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    The vast majority of "coaches" are stealing money. It's akin to modeling agencies stealing your money with hopes of seeing your sweetie on the cover of a magazine. Elite athletes have an extra gear. You can't coach that. True hitting is an art and craft that's what people don't understand. It's not a cookie cutter approach answered by a chatroom, GIF, or youtube video. There's a lot that goes in to it, but that effort comes from the athlete itself.

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    Checking out the clubhouse jmdub's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flipper14 View Post

    With the younger kids I wrestle with long-term mechanics vs. short term in-game success. I feel like I could bring a 10U or 12U kid in for a lesson and just throw front toss and live pitch to her for an hour and she's going to hit better in games, but am I helping her develop a "top-level" swing long term in doing so. I wrestle with that often. Parents aren't paying me to be a BP pitcher, or at least I don't think they should be.

    Great point. And goes directly into the "instant gratification" that parents want (or think they are paying for) vs understanding that the whole process is a journey. It cracks me up watching parents run from instructor to instructor chasing that "quick fix". If more people would understand it's about building trust and adding what a player can handle in the steps they can process and understand and then execute they will be better off long term than trying to make 1000 changes looking for the "fix". Know the absolutes of a great swing. Work toward a goal. Celebrate the successes along the way. Even this forum can be guilty of "chasing perfection" and if you don't know how to step back and take a little step at a time you can get very overwhelmed.

  13. #19
    Certified softball maniac pattar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cannonball View Post
    I wanted to add to this thread and bump it. I was supposed to have surgery last Friday but that changed and so, today, and that changed and now Thursday. My players found out that I had not had surgery yet and so, the phone "lit up" at they now say with many of them wanting one more lesson. I am so proud of my kids. Mudrunner, that would include your dd as well. It was hot today and I started at 3. I ran two at a time through there until 6:30 and I was soaking wet. At one point, one of the girls said that it was not fair that I would have surgery before their last tournament and then tryouts. I asked her how hot it was. She said, "Coach, I'm not going to lie. It is hot." I told her, "Yup, and you don't need me. You've been out here for an hour hitting with it being this hot. With that work ethic, you'll do just fine." An observation that I wanted to share is that so many "wanna be." IMO, the quickest way to failure is to be a wanna be. How about being a be? I sent a text to one young lady after she left to make sure she got home ok. She worked so hard and I bet she had 200 swings in slightly over an hour. IMO, she is D-I all the way with great speed, exceptional glove and technique in the OF and an above average arm. One of my girls had a career in Colorado last week. She ended play with grand slam and another home run in the same game. She hit right at .680 in the tournament. Tonight, she hit for an hour and a half. Again, I am so proud of them. They are working at being a "be" and not a "wanna be."
    Nice!!

    Went to the park with my kids yesterday for a few hours. It was hot but they are troopers. Little one (3 year old boy) got his "swings" and ground balls in first before I hit grounders and pitched to my 8 year old DD. Usually the little one helps shag for my DD (stick him about 200 ft out there..8 year old cannot hit that far yet) but he was lazy yesterday and found shade instead

    Fun times. Reminds me of when I was a kid, play all day and don't realize how hot it is until you are done..keeps me young.
    Last edited by pattar; 07-11-2018 at 11:05 AM.

  14. #20
    Certified softball maniac pattar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cannonball View Post

    Pattar, you are do a great job as a parent. BB was complimented by a HS coach a couple of weeks ago on how she worked that school's camp. BB said to me that this "stuff" is all she knows. The work ethic you are teaching your dd will become all that she knows. It is so much more important than just softball.
    I got a ways to go with parenting but I am trying. My father would take me to the field every day in the summer when I was a kid and it is the best memories I have with my father. I am hoping my kids have similar feelings when they are grown. Agree about teaching work ethic, the idea that if you want to be good at something you have to work at it, instilled in me by my parents, has carried through to other things in my life (including being a better parent..that is tough!!)

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