Quick Hits

Quick Reads - Brief Softball Articles

Hayley & Greg CruthersAs a parent some of the things I yelled out onto the field at my daughter, all before the age of 14 is embarrassing. At times I let my emotions get the best of me. But, during the summer between her freshman & sophomore years, I changed. I used to look back with regrets. Today I look back and laugh. I have to laugh, because I can’t go back and change it.

This is the time of year when parents sit through team meetings with their travel softball clubs.  They are often asked to sign parent contracts, which include rules about parental behavior through the season.  And yet every year there are conflicts between coaches and parents, which in most cases really have little to do with the coaches.  My goal is to present you with the last parent letter you'll ever need.

Read more: The Last Parent Letter You'll Ever Need

Sigh.  I briefly discussed the nonsense that appears in the sports forums (everywhere) in the article I wrote about travel softball tryouts.  Here is an example hot off the Mlive forum.  This post leads you to believe the whole team and coach are now part of my club, the Mid-Michigan Firestix.  The problem is that it is entirely false.

It proves the point I've made about these forums.

Read more: Beware of the Babble

It seems like she just came home for the summer, but she'll be heading back to Ball State Thursday for her sophomore year.  The summer flew by with her last year of 18u travel softball keeping us busy with several 3-day weekends, open houses, her part-time job and evening workouts at the old ball field.  After she leaves I'll have to get used to the empty nest all over again, as will millions of other parents across the country.

She decides what she wants to work on, for how long or whether to take the day off.

Trunk of Softball Dad's Car

Back of my filthy Ford Escape: Bug spray, sunscreen, umbrellas, chairs, blankets, towels, first aid kit, lots of dirt and trash.  We pick up the home run balls after a workout to return the next time.

Read more: Empty Nest Time Once Again

Hayley Cruthers - 14u Finesse Fastpitch - TN NationalsI just read a great article on the Fastpitch Softball TV web site by John Michael Kelly titled, "Confidence: Why It Comes and Goes."  Kelly's web site, SoftballSmarts.com, is filled with valuable information about the mental side of the game.  He also coaches The Next Level 18u travel softball team, an ASA Gold & PGF team out of Southern California, which my daughter has played against.  I highly recommend checking out his web site.

Here's an excerpt from the article, "The bottom line for parent or coach is that sports confidence, particularly for a teens or pre-teens, will likely be a moving target and a roller coaster ride…up one day (or one inning), down the next. The important message is to understand that hers is not a blanket confidence or a blanket “lack” of confidence in any moment."

When she began focusing on good swings, rather than big hits, she slowly started getting her mojo back.

After you read the article, I have a couple personal examples to share with you below.  

Read more: Confidence - How You Can Help

Becca Borawski JenkinsHave you ever heard young female athletes discussing their body weight with each other?  I did recently and it got me thinking about the topic.  I found a very interesting article written by Becca Borawski Jenkins, a female athlete, editor and coach, that I would encourage everybody to share with their daughters:  144lbs: Why Female Athletes Should Toss the Scale and Get a New Perspective.  

The subject of weight is often a very emotional topic for girls.  Her brief article explains why female athletes should stop focusing on their weight.  She tells you why the BMI calculators and doctors ideal weight charts are essentially meaningless for athletes. 

Read more: Female Athletes - Forget the Scale!

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