Detailed Softball Articles & Information
We Need Strong & Confident Kids
I came across this article recently written by Stacie Mahoe, Stop Babying Your Athletes, Help Raise STRONG Kids Instead! She’s been active in the softball world and blogging for years now. In this article she opines, “I believe competing is being hampered, discouraged, and eliminated by people who forever pamper kids, giving everyone a trophy while telling them “it’s okay” whenever they mess up, and instilling the idea that you don’t pay for mistakes or shouldn’t have to.”
She also talks about coaches and parents making excuses for the players, while clinging to the belief, “It’s just a game.” Her main point is, “Don’t allow them to become victims. Help raise STRONG, confident kids who believe in their own ability to overcome mistakes they make!”
An 8 year old making a mistake in tee ball cannot be compared to one made by a 16 year old on varsity or a travel team.
I thought about the possibility that some people may take what she’s saying the wrong way, while getting defensive and missing the message. I have said many times, “Softball is a game and games are meant to be fun!” I have also recently written about the developmental aspects of Recreational Softball and tweeted to the girls that I expect them to make mistakes in those games. And I’ve also texted, tweeted and written things like, “Relax, take a deep breath and swing hard. Whatever happens; happens. You can look good striking out.” So I decided I’d better attempt to clarify the points I have been trying to make in order to avoid any confusion or mixed messages.
In this article I describe school softball from middle school through varsity and what the philosophies should be for each. I discuss the mixture of social and serious players and parents and good vs bad coaches and parents in school softball. I provide some suggestions on overcoming bad situations with coaches and other parents. I tell you my opinion on how to be a great school softball parent. And finally I will ask for your feedback. Enjoy.
Future Article of this Series in the Big Blog: Levels of the Game – Travel Softball
This age is most likely when the girls who do not play travel sports get their first taste of a tryout process.
No Shortage of Opinions
One of the most frequently asked questions is, "What kind of bat should I get?" My answer has changed several times over the years. When you search the web for fastpitch softball bat reviews or top fastpitch softball bats and find articles you'll find there are no shortage of opinions. There are comments written by parents, coaches and players on many softball bat resellers web sites and softball forums too. Those comments typically range from, "I love that bat! Glad I bought this bat!" to "That bat is terrible. Don't buy it. Buy this bat instead."
You're in for a shock if you are new to the sport and have never shopped for a bat before.
In this article I describe recreational softball from the younger years through the high school years. I explain how to survive the Everybody Gets Trophy concept that is everywhere in youth sports today, primarily in the younger years (ages 5-12). As your daughters continue with softball into the older age groups (ages 13-18) I talk about how recreational ball becomes a bit more competitive, while retaining its more socially relaxed environment.
I characterize the coaches, umpires and even YOU the parents and the vast differences in experience at each stage of recreational ball. I give you my 2 cents on how to be a great recreational softball parent and discuss the practice of good sportsmanship. Yes, one of my pet peeves is the sportsmanship that YOU the parents practice, which has truths for all of the levels of all sports. And finally I ask for your feedback. Enjoy.
My next article will be: Levels of the Game - School Softball