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Youth Baseball And The IronMan Award

Updated on June 20, 2012

Do you want to teach your children the skills they will need to succeed in life? Then sign them up for youth baseball. Youth baseball leagues are the perfect venue to teaching our kids about life skills.

LEADERSHIP

Good leaders are made not born. Young kids can learn the attitudes that make a person a leader, including: education, training, and practice. Inspiring children requires them communicate with the players.

A good youth baseball coach should be able to teach every kid the ability to act in a leadership role. Tips that kid baseball coaches can do to help every kid learn leadership skills is by empowering each of them in a leadership role during practices, or by assigning tasks that require them to interact and monitor the efforts of their teammates.

SPORTSMANSHIP

Youth baseball leagues are a great way for teaching our children about sportsmanship. When we talk about sportsmanship we mean playing fair, following the rules of the game, respecting the judgement of the umpires and treating players, parents and coaches with respect. Sportsmanship also includes courtesy and grace in losing. Kids baseball is a great proving ground for applying situations to instruct this skill. As a youth baseball coach or parent, if you find yourself in the position where a sportsmanship issue needs to be addressed, do it one on one to avoid embarrassing the player and keeping it personal.

TEAMWORK

Teamwork is a helpful skill to teach our children. It is particularly important for a unit to act like a well-oiled machine. If just one player in the infield is unwilling to act as a member of the team, the game could be lost. Therefore, all members of a baseball team need to play together.

COMPETITION

Youth baseball is a way to teach our youth about competition. Kids who get involved with baseball at an early age, tend to maintain a good level of fitness and activity throughout their life. Little League competition helps children boost self-confidence, improve coordination, and build discipline, focus and respect. Baseball teach communication and cooperation, and give kids a solid foundation and sense of belonging and partnership.

Developing a child's competitiveness means teaching them to accept winning or losing, overcoming obstacles and accepting the results of their efforts.

OVERCOMING ADVERSITY

How critical is it to be able to overcome adversity. The game of baseball is full of failure. Consider that a great batting average is one who gets a hit 3 hits every 10 times at bat. A pitcher is considered good if he wins more games than he loses. Players make errors and batters strikeout.

Youth baseball teaches children how to come back after adversity. Each time a young baseball player comes up to bat or goes into the field, they have a chance to redeem themselves, regardless of previous failures. This is a great skill that is very important for succeeding in life. Overcoming adversity gives the kids confidence in themselves and gives them the feeling they can accomplish anything.

HUSTLE

Hustle converts to a work ethic and is an important indicator of work ethic. What company wants an employee who doesn't give their all? The same is true in youth baseball, lack of hustle is viewed negatively and should not tolerated. It is important for youth baseball coaches to emphasize hustle. This means running on and off the field, running out hits, fly outs and ground ball outs. Hustle is a true quality of a champion and shows your passion for something you love to do.

ACKNOWLEGE PROGRESS

It's essential to acknowledge the progress of each kid on your youth baseball team. You obviously need to commend those who have excelled in the physical aspects of baseball, including: hitting, catching and pitching. But also reward them for the mental accomplishments made during the season.

But there is one more trait that is great for the development of our children. It is perfect attendance and being punctual to all the kids baseball practices and games. This is so important, that our youth baseball league has created an Iron Man award.

PERFECT ATTENDANCE - IRONMAN AWARD

The Iron Man award was conceived by a few coaches who wanted to reward the kids who were committed to their team. It was based on Cal Ripken's record of playing in a record 2,632 straight games spanning sixteen seasons, from May 30, 1982 to September 20, 1998. The award is given to every player who has attended every day of school and every baseball game in the season. Each recipient is awarded a cash prize (usually a U.S Savings Bond between $100 and $250 provided by local businesses) and featured in the local paper.

What an outstanding way to influence our kids futures. Not only does it make the kids and their parents proud, but it makes the whole community proud and gives kid good publicity instead of the never ending pounding of isolated negative incidents of America's youth. What a great way to support and encourage the future of our communities.





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