Sport Development Blog

 Four Myths Parents Need to Know About Supplements
(5/23/2019)
 
 
   

Four Myths Parents Need to Know About Supplements



Dietary supplements are omnipresent in sports. When youth athletes see their professional idols or peers using supplements, they may feel supplementation is necessary to keep up with the competition. Since they are so readily available, it’s also easy for parents to think there’s no harm in letting athletes use them.

Unfortunately, the supplement industry is one of smoke and mirrors. Although they might seem appropriate for young athletes trying to stay healthy and competitive, there are many myths surrounding supplements that parents should be aware of before choosing to buy these products.
 
MYTH: A Supplement Found on Store Shelves is Safe

While you would think that a supplement sold in a health food store or pharmacy has been thoroughly vetted for safety and efficacy, that’s not the case due to how the U.S. supplement industry is regulated.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) evaluates supplements in a post-market manner, meaning that all supplements can be sold until something is proven wrong with them. This is the opposite of how pharmaceuticals are regulated, as their effectiveness must first be proven in studies and clinical trials.
 
MYTH: Labels Tell You Exactly What’s in a Supplement

Post-market regulation also makes it possible for supplement labels to be extremely misrepresentative, as well as intentionally deceptive, about what is actually in a product.
Many supplement companies list ‘Proprietary Blend’ on the label, meaning they can hide any ingredients they want, including those prohibited in sports, under that name. Other companies list ingredients under scientific names, or even fake names, that you might not recognize as anything dangerous or illicit, even if you are careful about reading the label.

In other cases, supplements that aren’t meant to contain potent substances become contaminated as a result of being produced in the same setting as higher-risk supplements. The manufacturer may be unaware and the label won’t reflect the error, but consumers are still at risk when products don’t undergo pre-market analysis and certification.
 
MYTH: Natural Ingredients Mean a Supplement is Safe

Supplement companies often brand their products as being ‘all-natural’ or ‘organic,’ usually with a green ‘certified’ logo that provides a holistic vibe. However, there’s plenty of things in nature that can cause serious damage to the human body, and unfortunately these are sometimes found in supplements.

The classic example of this is ephedra, an ingredient from a plant of the same name, which was popular in weight-loss supplements. After the ingredient was tied to the deaths of several young athletes and an NFL player, as well as other severe side effects in many more people, the FDA banned the ingredient from being sold in supplements in 2004. However, products that contain ephedra extract are still legal.
 
MYTH: Recalled or Proven Dangerous Products Can No Longer Be Bought

Unfortunately, after a supplement has been proven dangerous and recalled, it doesn’t magically disappear from the market.

Instead, it’s up to the retailer to pay attention to recall announcements and remove the product from their shelves. This means a dangerous product can stay on store shelves for years after the fact and that someone who has already bought said product would never know that it’s been recalled.
 
How to Decide If Supplements are Appropriate


While many people use supplements without adverse health consequences, it’s vital for consumers, and especially athletes who may be subject to anti-doping rules, to understand there is no such thing as a ‘no-risk’ supplement, only a ‘lower-risk’ supplement. In most cases, a healthy, balanced diet will get athletes the nutrients they need to stay fit and perform at their best. Some athletes may have specific nutrient deficiencies, but those should be diagnosed and treated in collaboration with your physician.

Before letting your athlete take any supplement, even one recommended by a physician, always do your due diligence by researching a supplement’s ingredients and manufacturer. For more information on these best practices and other helpful information about supplements, download the TrueSport Supplement Guide.


TrueSport®, a movement powered by the experience and values of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, champions the positive values and life lessons learned through youth sport. TrueSport® inspires athletes, coaches, parents, and administrators to change the culture of youth sport through active engagement and thoughtful curriculum based on cornerstone lessons of sportsmanship, character-building, and clean and healthy performance, by creating leaders across communities through sport.


 The Value Of Versatility
(5/17/2019)
 
 
   

The Value of Versatility


FUNdamental Skills
By Darren Fenster


Not so long ago, when a player was described as a utility man, it was a fancy way to call a backup on the bench, and not exactly a term of endearment by any means.  But thanks to Big Leaguers like Ben Zobrist, Marwin Gonzalez, Brock Holt, and even pitchers like Andrew Miller or Nate Eovaldi, the players who can play all over the diamond or handle various roles on the mound have quickly become some of the most valuable guys on their team’s roster.

Think back to the World Series last October, and it’s clear to see how valuable Red Sox starters Rick Porcello, Chris Sale, and Game Three super-human Eovaldi were coming out of the bullpen en route to winning that title over the Dodgers.  The Royals and Cubs both won rings in large part because of Zobrist’s ability to be penciled in anywhere with grass or dirt under his feet, so much so that he was named MVP of the 2016 Fall Classic. This past off-season, Gonzalez signed a 21 million-dollar contract with the Twins, and Holt was an American League All-Star in 2015.

Follow any Major League team in this day and age, and you’ll quickly see how many lineups are determined by matchups against the opposing club’s starting pitcher.  And watch any Big League game, and you’ll quickly see how many late game pinch-hit/pinch-run and defensive decisions are made to put a team in the best position to win. Utility players have quickly become some of the most important pieces of a team.

The game has adapted to appreciate players who can play all over the diamond, and you should, too.  When someone can play multiple positions, they are giving their manager multiple options of how to use them.  It’s never too early for players to prepare themselves for that day when a coach asks them to move to a spot outside of their normal comfort zone.

Here are just a few ways they can bridge that gap and shorten the learning curve:

Catchers can take fungos anywhere on the infield to become comfortable fielding ground balls. That practice will actually help them become more athletic behind the plate specifically on tag plays at home.  Infielders should move to the outfield during batting practice and simply work live off the bat to get a feel for reading and tracking fly balls.  Doing so will improve their ability to handle pop-ups when they move back on to the infield dirt.  Outfielders should always bounce around to all three spots to become interchangeable in centerfield or at one of the corners.  And lastly, all players can always throw on some gear and catch pitchers’ bullpens.  Every team needs an emergency catcher if in the event the two guys on the roster go down in one game, and anyone who can reliably catch in a game quickly becomes one of the most valuable on the entire roster because the position is the most challenging on the field.
 
Learning how to play a secondary position doesn’t mean you have to become a gold glover at a spot you have very little experience.  Rather all you need to be is reliable.  Reliable and trusting enough to make the routine play, to throw the ball to the correct base, and to be in the right spot on the field when you are supposed to be there.  Knowing all of the responsibilities of multiple positions will turn you into a smarter player in the grand scheme of the game.

So, the next time a coach asks you to play somewhere outside of your primary position, thank him; he is creating some versatility for you that will turn into value when you learn how to play just about anywhere, any day.



Darren Fenster is a contributor to the USA Baseball Sport Development Blog, and is currently the Manager of the Portland Sea Dogs, the Double-A affiliate of the Boston Red Sox. A former player in the Kansas City Royals minor league system, Fenster joined the Red Sox organization in 2012 after filling various roles on the Rutgers University Baseball staff, where he was a two-time All-American for the Scarlet Knights. Fenster is also Founder and CEO of Coaching Your Kids, LLC, and can be found on Twitter @CoachYourKids.


 Running Poles
(5/14/2019)
 
 
   

Running Poles


Diamond Doc
By Dr. Marc Richard


Dr. Marc Richard, Orthopedic Surgeon at Duke University and USA Baseball Sport Development Contributor, discusses a the longstanding tradition of running poles after pitching, and whether or not it is effective as a recovery tool by reducing lactic acid buildup. To have your questions answered by Dr. Richard, submit them using #USABMailbag on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter.


Marc Richard, MD, is a contributor to the USA Baseball Sport Development Blog, and is an Associate Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at Duke University, specializing in elbow, wrist and hand injuries. Dr. Richard’s research evaluates the clinical outcomes of fractures of the upper extremity, with a particular interest in wrist and elbow fractures and improving ways to treat elbow arthritis in young patients. He also has a clinical and research interest in adolescent elbow throwing injuries.


 Hitting Approach in Run-Scoring Situations
(5/13/2019)
 
 
   

Hitting Approach in Run-Scoring Situations


Monday Manager
By Tom Succow


In this edition of Monday Manager, four-time USA Baseball coaching alum Tom Succow breaks down the ideal, aggressive hitting approach players should utilize in order to bring a run in when they are up in the count with a runner in scoring position.


Tom Succow, is a contributor to the USA Baseball Sport Development Blog, and is currently the assistant coach at Yavapai College in Prescott, Arizona. In 2017, Succow retired as the Head Baseball Coach at Brophy College Preparatory in Phoenix, Arizona, after 42 years at the helm. Succow accumulated over 700 wins during his tenure, as well as a state championship in 2006 and three state runner-up honors in 1982, 2007 and 2012. Succow is a four-time USA Baseball coaching alum, including an assistant coaching position with the 2003 16U National Team, which won the gold medal in the International Baseball Federation AA World Youth Championships in Taiwan. Succow was honored by the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) as National Coach of the Year in 2007 and is a member of four Halls of Fames, being inducted into the Arizona Baseball Coaches Hall of Fame in 2003, the Brophy Hall of Fame in 2007, the National High School Baseball Coaches Association (BCA) Hall of Fame in 2013, and the Arizona High School Athletic Coaches Hall of Fame in 2016.


 Clean and Healthy Competition: Why It Matters
(5/9/2019)
 
   

Clean and Healthy Competition: Why It Matters


In youth sports


Why do you and your kids love sports? Maybe it’s the pure joy that comes from playing alongside teammates united by a common goal. Maybe it’s the sense of wonder in what the human body can achieve through hard work and talent. Or maybe it’s the instinctive thrill of competition and the possibility of victory. Maybe it’s all of those things.

All these reasons, however, can be threatened by the same thing – cheating. And when cheating takes the form of doping, it not only threatens the value of sport, but more importantly, the health of the athlete.

With the competitive nature of youth sports escalating, the temptation to rise above the competition through the use of performance-enhancing drugs will also start occurring to athletes at a younger age. This, and the increasingly easy access to potent substances, is why coaches, parents, and youth sport role models must help shape an environment that prioritizes clean and healthy competition.

Promote a Level Playing Field

Using performance-enhancing drugs to gain an unfair advantage devalues the hard work and hours of training other athletes have invested in themselves and in their teammates.

According to the TrueSport Report released by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, “more than half of the general population agree that there are sports that are accepting of unethical behavior. In addition, more than one-third of children agree that some sports do a bad job of teaching the difference between right and wrong.”

But at every level of competition, athletes, coaches, officials, and parents can help create a culture of clean sport.

Whether it’s something as simple as faking a foul, or as serious as taking a performance-enhancing drug, young athletes need to know that no form of cheating is acceptable. Instead, help reinforce the concept that competing fair, with respect and integrity, is always more important than winning.

More specifically, you can help combat the ‘winning-at-all-costs’ culture by tracking teamwork, improvement, attitude, and resilience as closely as you do wins and losses. You can also communicate to athletes that failure is natural, and even preferred if the alternative is cheating.

Also keep in mind that young people often learn best from watching others, making it crucial that coaches, parents, and officials conduct themselves properly as an example of great sportsmanship for young athletes.

Keep Kids Healthy

It’s tempting for athletes of all ages to want to secure an edge over their competitors. But, there’s a difference between performing efficiently and taking a harmful shortcut with serious health consequences. Those potential consequences, both short-term and long-term, may not occur to a young athlete whose focus is on the immediate reward.

Help your athletes understand that there are serious health consequences associated with performance-enhancing drugs. Stimulants and anabolic agents, some of which end up illegally in supplements, are easily accessible on store shelves and online, especially those used for energy, muscle building, and weight loss. The effects may not always be immediate, but they can impact an athlete’s quality of life long after they stop playing sports.
 
To ensure your athletes are ready to perform at their best without dangerous substances, make sure they eat a well-balanced meal of protein, carbohydrates, and fats, while allowing themselves an adequate amount of recovery time between practices and big competitions.
___

Every young athlete deserves to have fun and compete in a fair game.

At the end of the day, competing clean and healthy is what matters. Any result aided by performance-enhancing drugs will rob young athletes, their teammates, opponents, coaches, and parents from celebrating a true victory.

It’s not too soon to start proactively cultivating a culture of clean and healthy performance that helps protect all athletes and sports from the physical and ethical effects of doping.


TrueSport®, a movement powered by the experience and values of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, champions the positive values and life lessons learned through youth sport. TrueSport® inspires athletes, coaches, parents, and administrators to change the culture of youth sport through active engagement and thoughtful curriculum based on cornerstone lessons of sportsmanship, character-building, and clean and healthy performance, by creating leaders across communities through sport.


 Situational Advantages
(5/8/2019)
 
   

Situational Advantages


Cuddyer's Corner
By Michael Cuddyer


Former Major Leaguer Michael Cuddyer discusses what to look out for in your opponent to give your team a game-changing edge. To have your questions answered by Michael Cuddyer, submit them using #USABMailbag on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter.


Michael Cuddyer is a contributor to the USA Baseball Sport Development blog, and is a 15-year MLB veteran and two-time All-Star, spending his career playing for the Minnesota Twins, Colorado Rockies and the New York Mets. A member of the USA Baseball 18U National Team in 1996 and 1997, Cuddyer was then named the 1997 Virginia Player of the Year, Gatorade National Player of the Year, and was a member of USA Today’s All-Star team. He was selected ninth overall in the 1997 MLB Amateur Player Draft by the Minnesota Twins.


 Aplicación de Ejercicios del Bateo
(5/3/2019)
 
   

Aplicación de Ejercicios del Bateo


USA Baseball


Un ejercicio es una manera de enseñar y desarrollar habilidades a través de la repetición. Los mejores ejercicios no sólo son grandes herramientas para el desarrollo de habilidades, sino también mantienen a los jugadores interesados y activos durante el entrenamiento.
Un componente clave de maximizar el trabajo de ejercicios es no apresurar al bateador. El bateador debe trabajar en mantener la misma preparación física, además del mismo proceso de pensamiento relajado para cada lanzamiento. Esto permite que el bateador desacelere el partido, relaje, vea la pelota y golpee la pelota. El objetivo debe ser siempre que el bateador pueda repetir sus mecánicos en un ambiente controlado para que se mantenga en los partidos.
Hay tres razones principales para ejecutar ejercicios. Es importante seleccionar ejercicios con propósitos que corresponden a los objetivos de entrenamiento. Los tres propósitos principales de los ejercicios son:

1. Introducir Habilidades

Los ejercicios que presentan nuevas habilidades a los jugadores deben enfocarse en un objetivo muy específico. Se deben dar a los jugadores suficiente tiempo para completar el ejercicio para que retengan las nuevas habilidades. Cuando presentes la nueva habilidad, utiliza ejercicios que son repetitivos, enfocados y que se enfocan en los fundamentos uno por uno.

2. Mantener Habilidades

Los ejercicios que mantienen las habilidades de los jugadores se enfocan en repetir los grupos de habilidades para que se conviertan en instinto. Cuando se usan los ejercicios que mantienen las habilidades, es importante que los ejercicios sean repetitivos y que ilustren, evalúen y midan la ejecución de las habilidades. Estos ejercicios se deben hacer de una manera parecida a un partido.

3. Perfeccionar Habilidades

Los ejercicios que pretenden perfeccionar las habilidades se enfocan no sólo en las habilidades mismas, sino también en la comunicación, la cadencia, la exactitud y la consistencia. Estos ejercicios requieren más preparación y dedicación, y típicamente exigen más de los jugadores. Cada aspecto del conjunto de habilidades debe unirse en uno solo ejercicio.

En general, los ejercicios son buena manera de lograr objetivos, de enseñar nuevas habilidades a los jugadores y de perfeccionar las habilidades que los jugadores tienen ya. Aquí están algunos puntos clave de recordar a la hora de seleccionar ejercicios:

La longitud del ejercicio debe depender del nivel de competencia y la edad de los jugadores
Los ejercicios cortos con intensidad son más eficaces que los ejercicios más largos con respiro
La repetición es esencial para retener habilidades nuevas y mantener habilidades previas
Organizar los ejercicios para que correspondan a las necesidades de los jugadores
Planificar para obtener el equipo que se puede requerir para los ejercicios, y para reducir el tiempo que se necesita para armarlo
Crear un plan de entrenamiento que fluye fácilmente de un ejercicio a otro
Estudiar los ejercicios para que se pueda explicarlos fácilmente a los jugadores

HACER QUE LOS EJERCICIOS SE PAREZCAN A PARTIDOS

Los ejercicios que se hacen para mantener o perfeccionar las habilidades se deben hacer a ritmo de partido. Esto quiere decir que dichos ejercicios deben ser bastante desafiantes para imitar la velocidad a la que el jugador tendría que completar las habilidades en un partido. Para hacer que un ejercicio se parezca a un partido, se puede:

Meter prisa al ejercicio
Añadir corredores de base a ejercicios defensivos
Combinar ejercicios de bateo con ejercicios de fildeo
Añadir corredores de base a ejercicios de situaciones ofensivas
Convertir los ejercicios en competiciones
Animar a los jugadores a jugar a toda velocidad
Medir cada ejercicio y hacer que los jugadores traten de obtener mejores tiempos con cada nueva repetición
Fomentar comunicación y trabajo en equipo entre los jugadores
Hacer que los jugadores se visualicen en un partido durante el ejercicio


 Alternative Treatments For UCL Injuries
(4/30/2009)
 
   

Alternative Treatments to UCL Injuries


Diamond Doc
By Dr. Marc Richard


Dr. Marc Richard, Orthopedic Surgeon at Duke University and USA Baseball Sport Development Contributor, discusses recent developments in elbow injury treatment that may help players avoid Tommy John surgery. To have your questions answered by Dr. Richard, submit them using #USABMailbag on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter.


Marc Richard, MD, is a contributor to the USA Baseball Sport Development Blog, and is an Associate Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at Duke University, specializing in elbow, wrist and hand injuries. Dr. Richard’s research evaluates the clinical outcomes of fractures of the upper extremity, with a particular interest in wrist and elbow fractures and improving ways to treat elbow arthritis in young patients. He also has a clinical and research interest in adolescent elbow throwing injuries.


 Consejos para Corredores en Cada Base
(4/30/2019)
 
   

Consejos para Corredores en Cada Base


USA Baseball 


El corrido de bases es uno de los aspectos más cruciales del juego, y cada base presenta sus propios desafíos y claves para recordar. Mientras les enseñas a tus atletas la importancia del corrido de bases, asegúrate de cubrir las claves siguientes para cada base.

EN LA PRIMERA BASE

Mientras estás en la primera base, busca señales del entrenador de tercera base.
Está consciente de los otros corredores en las bases y el número de outs.
Toma una ventaja primaria de más o menos ocho pies de la primera base.
Mientras el lanzamiento se envía, toma una ventaja secundaria de dos o tres pasos laterales.
Si el lanzador se da vuelta para hacer una jugada de sorpresa, el corredor debe lanzarse o correr de vuelta a la base.
Está alerto y vuelve a la primera base después del lanzamiento, si no el receptor te puede sacar por jugada de sorpresa.
En caso de un elevado con menos de dos outs, muévete a medio camino hacia la segunda base y vuelve rápidamente a la primera si se lo atrapa.
En caso de un hit al jardín derecho, echa un vistazo al entrenador de tercera base mientras vas desde la primera hasta la tercera. En caso de un hit al jardín izquierdo, echa un vistazo y haz una decisión tú mismo.
En caso de una doble matanza, no dejes que el defensor de segunda base te toque. Fuerza un tiro a la segunda para permitir que el bateador tenga más tiempo para llegar a la primera y deslízate en la segunda base sin importar la situación.

EN LA SEGUNDA BASE

Concéntrate en el lanzador sin mirar a los jugadores del medio del cuadro. El entrenador debe observar a los jugadores del medio del cuadro y advertir al corredor si está en peligro de ser víctima de una jugada de sorpresa.
Toma una ventaja primaria de más o menos ocho pies de la segunda base.
Mientras se envía el lanzamiento, toma una ventaja secundaria de dos o tres pasos laterales.
Si el lanzador se da vuelta para hacer una jugada de sorpresa, el corredor debe lanzarse o correr de vuelta a la base.
La ventaja se puede tomar desde la línea de base para conseguir un mejor ángulo al rondar la tercera si el corredor no intenta robar la tercera base.
El corredor debe ser más agresivo con la ventaja en la segunda base, pero todavía debe tener cuidado.
Pretende anotar en cualquier hit que no se golpea rápidamente a un jardinero.
       o Una pelota que se golpea a la izquierda del corredor debe permitir que avanza a la tercera.
       o Una pelota que se golpea a la derecha del corredor le requiere esperar hasta que vaya a través del cuadro antes de avanzar.
       o Una pelota que se golpea directamente al corredor le requiere hacer su propia decisión mientras evitar golpearse por la pelota cueste lo que cueste.

EN LA TERCERA BASE

Toma una ventaja caminando más o menos seis pies por la línea en el territorio de foul mientras la pelota cruza el plato.
El pie derecho del corredor debe golpear el suelo mientras la pelota entra en la zona de batear.
Quédate en el territorio de foul mientras tomas una ventaja y vuelve a la tercera dentro de la línea para interrumpir el intento del receptor de hacer una jugada de sorpresa.
Posiciónate siempre para avanzar en caso de un elevado en el jardín.
Corre al máximo al plato y deslízate cuando sea necesario.

EL DESLIZAMIENTO DE FIGURA 4

No tengas miedo de bajarte, ir con los pies por delante y comenzar temprano.
Mientras corres al máximo, bájate y doblar una pierna debajo de la otra en una figura “4”.
Levanta las manos al nivel de los hombros. Para evitar lesiones, no te agarres con la mano.
Deslizarse con la pierna izquierda extendida conduce al posicionamiento óptimo para avanzar a la siguiente base.
Consejo de seguridad: Indecisión en deslizarse causa lesiones.
Consejo de práctica: La mejor manera de practicar deslizarse es en el césped sin zapatos o con una almohadilla separable y una estera de deslizarse.


 Chasing The Breaking Ball
(4/29/2019)
 
   

Chasing The Breaking Ball


Monday Manager
By Tom Succow


In this edition of Monday Manager, four-time USA Baseball coaching alum Tom Succow discusses how to set up a hitter to chase a breaking ball out of the zone in a full count, and why batters often swing without hesitation. 


Tom Succow, is a contributor to the USA Baseball Sport Development Blog, and is currently the assistant coach at Yavapai College in Prescott, Arizona. In 2017, Succow retired as the Head Baseball Coach at Brophy College Preparatory in Phoenix, Arizona, after 42 years at the helm. Succow accumulated over 700 wins during his tenure, as well as a state championship in 2006 and three state runner-up honors in 1982, 2007 and 2012. Succow is a four-time USA Baseball coaching alum, including an assistant coaching position with the 2003 16U National Team, which won the gold medal in the International Baseball Federation AA World Youth Championships in Taiwan. Succow was honored by the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) as National Coach of the Year in 2007 and is a member of four Halls of Fames, being inducted into the Arizona Baseball Coaches Hall of Fame in 2003, the Brophy Hall of Fame in 2007, the National High School Baseball Coaches Association (BCA) Hall of Fame in 2013, and the Arizona High School Athletic Coaches Hall of Fame in 2016.


 Tips For Fueling Vegetarian Athletes
(4/25/2019)
 
   

Tips For Fueling Vegetarian Athletes


Nutritional advice for competitors with a vegetarian diet


Being a vegetarian might seem at odds with also being a competitive athlete, but it’s becoming far more common, even at sports’ highest levels.

Martina Navratilova, one of the best tennis players of all-time, credits a plant-based diet as the reason she was able to win majors into her late 40s. NBA champions Glen Davis, James Jones, and John Salley are also vegetarians, as was Ironman Hall of Famer Dave Scott when he was training for his six Ironman World Championships. And five-time Wimbledon champion Venus Williams, 300-pound NFL lineman David Carter, and American champion Olympic weightlifter Kendrick Farris are not only vegetarian, but vegan.

Regardless of if your athlete participates in an endurance, strength, or even combat sport, eating a vegetarian diet and still performing to their potential can be done. Figuring out what exactly to feed a plant-based athlete isn’t always easy in the beginning, but following these tips will help them cover all their nutritional bases so they can then cross them on the field.

Tip #1: Get Enough Protein

The macronutrient vegetarians need to deliberately seek out most is protein. While plant and vegetable proteins repair muscle the same way animal proteins can, the American Dietetic Association (ADA) recommends vegetarian athletes increase their protein intake 10% to help account for plant proteins that don’t get fully digested by the body. For endurance athletes, this makes the daily protein recommendation 0.55-0.64g per pound of bodyweight and 0.73-0.77g per pound of bodyweight for more strength-based athletes.

Vegetarian athletes can account for this inherent deficit by consuming beans, nuts, seeds, whole grains, and lentils. For athletes that are ovo-lacto vegetarians (meaning they still eat some non-meat animal products), eggs and dairy are abundant sources of protein. Shakes can also be an easy and tasty way to supplement the protein normally consumed through meat. A shake recipe almost any athlete will enjoy involves blending ice, frozen fruit, chia seeds, peanut or nut butter, and protein powder with milk, coconut milk, or water.

Tip #2: Diversify the Diet


For new vegetarians, it can be easy to find a few foods that ‘work’ then become overly-reliant on them. While convenient, eating the same handful of meals can lead to deficiencies in certain vitamins and minerals. These deficiencies can be harmful to an athlete’s health and their athletic performance, causing fatigue, poor bone density, and the inability to properly repair and strengthen muscle.

The simplest way to make up for the lack of zinc, magnesium, and other micronutrients the modern diet leaves even many non-vegetarians deficient in is to ‘eat the rainbow.’ Simply, this just means to eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables and avoid sticking to the same week in and week out. Perhaps more than any other micronutrient, vegetarians should take particular care to eat food containing Vitamin B12, which is not found in plants but can be taken in by eating B12-fortified foods such as cereals, soy milk, vegetable stock, and eggs and dairy products if your athlete is an ovo-lacto vegetarian.

Tip #3: Estimate What They’re Eating

Except for maybe 1% of the most-devoted athletes, the average teen doesn’t have the dedication to count calories, macronutrients, or plan and record their meals. But even just getting a rough estimate of their protein, fat, carbohydrate, and calorie intake while also keeping an eye on their mood, energy level, weight, and athletic performance can give a good estimate as to which areas their diet is sufficient and deficient.

Since most teens are on routine schedules and many of their meals are either prepared or eaten at home, parents themselves can log what their athletes are eating (asking when needed to fill in the gaps), then determine macronutrient and calorie counts on a site or app. Logging these daily counts and simply asking your athlete how they feel for even just two to three weeks can go a long way in figuring out how to make small adjustments to a veggie athlete’s diet and help them feel and perform their best.

Tip #4: Be Mindful of The GI Index

It’s important to remember that not all vegetarian foods are created equal. Many of the foods most readily available to vegetarians also rank high on the glycemic index, a scale measuring how much influence carb-heavy foods have on the body’s blood sugar.

High GI foods are better immediately following an endurance workout as they are quickly absorbed by the body. At any other time, however, these foods spike the body’s blood sugar and promote hunger as well as fat storage. Conversely, low GI foods are digested more slowly. This leads to feeling full longer and less unwanted weight gain.

For quick reference, here is a table showing the glycemic load[1] for several common vegetarian foods. A load of 10 or below is considered low, while anything 20 or above is considered high and should be eaten sparingly.

Food Glycemic Load (Serving Size)
Hummus 0 (30g)
Peanuts 1 (50g)
Carrot 4 (80g)
Apple 5 (120g)
Black beans 7 (150g)
Whole wheat bread 9 (30g)
White wheat flour bread 11 (30g)
Oatmeal 13 (250g)
Brown rice, steamed 16 (150g)
Spaghetti, whole grain 17 (180g)
Instant Oatmeal 21 (30g)
Sweet Potato 22 (150g)
Bagel (white) 25 (70g)
Raisins 28 (60g)
White rice, boiled 29 (150g)
Russet Potato 33 (150g)

The glycemic indices and loads for more foods can be found at Health.Harvard.edu

Tip #5: Making A Calculated Transition

If your athlete is merely just interested in the idea of vegetarianism or wants to try it out and see how it affects their athletic performance, it might be easier for everyone involved to make it a gradual transition as opposed to a wholesale, overnight change.

If you and your athlete eat meat every day, a first step could be to try and incorporate ‘meatless Mondays’ (or any other day) as a first step in experimenting with recipes and the new logistical challenges that come with making the switch. From there, veggie-only days could be expanded to two days a week and so on, until a groove is hit where it becomes easier to not have to think about preparing meatless dishes.

A Sample Meal Plan for Vegetarian Athletes

Keeping in mind the above, a daily mean plan for a vegetarian teen participating in a cardiovascular-demanding sport could look like some combination of the following:

Breakfast

Oats with yogurt and fruit
Smoothie with frozen fruit, chia seeds, peanut or nut butter, protein powder, coconut milk
Potato and broccoli frittata (ovo-lacto)

Lunch or Dinner

Rice or pasta with tofu, vegetables, and sauce
Quinoa bowl with lentils, beans, salsa
Cauliflower and chickpea curry, side salad, and baked sweet potato
Black bean burgers with grilled peppers and hummus
Margherita pizza with stuffed Portobello mushrooms
Baked penne pasta with roasted vegetables

Snacks/Anytime

Fruits
Nuts
Hummus/lentil/chickpea/black bean dip
Dark chocolate
Coconut ice cream
Fruit ‘crumble’ bars
Popcorn

Like with anything diet-related, figuring out what’s best for your vegetarian athlete is going to be a matter of trial and error. Ultimately, it will be steady small changes that lead to the big ones they are looking for from a diet change.
 


Sources:
https://lifehacker.com/what-it-means-to-eat-the-rainbow-1594799068
https://www.healthline.com/health/vitamin-b12-foods-for-vegetarians-risks-and-complications
https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/7-common-nutrient-deficiencies
https://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/glycemic-index-and-glycemic-load-for-100-foods
http://www.nutritionaustralia.org/national/resource/diabetes
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glycemic_index
http://www.ideafit.com/fitness-library/training-tips-for-vegetarian-athletes
https://foodtolive.com/healthy-blog/diet-training-tips-vegetarian-athletes/
https://www.reddit.com/r/Fitness
http://www.stack.com/a/vegetarian-athlete-kate-ziegler
http://www.anitabean.co.uk/nutrition-tips-vegetarian-athletes-2/
http://www.nomeatathlete.com/vegetarian-recipes-for-athletes/
https://www.shape.com/healthy-eating/healthy-recipes/13-easy-and-healthy-frittata-recipes
[1] From health.harvard.edu: The glycemic load is determined by multiplying the grams of a carbohydrate in a serving by the glycemic index, then dividing by 100.


TrueSport®, a movement powered by the experience and values of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, champions the positive values and life lessons learned through youth sport. TrueSport® inspires athletes, coaches, parents, and administrators to change the culture of youth sport through active engagement and thoughtful curriculum based on cornerstone lessons of sportsmanship, character-building, and clean and healthy performance, by creating leaders across communities through sport.


 Situaciones del Partido
(4/26/2019)
 
   

Situaciones del Partido 


USA Baseball


Como  el “general del campo”, el receptor se involucre en casi todas las jugadas defensivas en el partido. A continuación se ve una variedad de situaciones para que un buen receptor debe estar preparado, cómo prepararse para ellas y cómo deben ejecutarse.

DAR SEÑALES

Asegura que no haya confusión entre el receptor, el lanzador y los jugadores del medio del cuadro.
Las señales deben esconderse bien de los entrenadores y los corredores opuestos.
Conoce las señales del entrenador y comunícaselas al lanzador.

LOS TOQUES

El receptor tiene que llamar en voz alta las jugadas de toque para avisar a la defensa adónde tirar la pelota. El receptor es el único jugador que mira la jugada entera.
La ofensiva está entregando un out. ¡Asegura de tomarlo!
Cuando fildea un toque, el receptor debe llegar rápidamente a la pelota y saca la máscara.
Mientras llega a la pelota, el receptor debe controlarse con una base amplia.
Cuando sea posible, el receptor debe recoger la pelota con el pecho sobre la pelota.
Usa el guante cuando la pelota está rodando.
Usa la mano desprotegida cuando la pelota ha parado.

LOS TOQUES EN LA LÍNEA DE PRIMERA BASE

Si la pelota se tira a primera base, el receptor debe acercarse a la pelota del lado izquierdo.
El receptor debe darse un carril claro para tirar cuando tira a primera base.
Si la pelota se tira a segunda o tercera base, se debe tomar agresivamente una línea directa a la pelota.
Asegura de llegar a la pelota y mantener el momento hacia el blanco.
Mantener un buen ángulo de brazo (mano sobre codo) crea tiros más precisos.

LOS TOQUES EN LA LÍNEA DE TERCERA BASE


Si la pelota se tira a tercera base, el receptor debe acercarse a la pelota del lado derecho. Cuánto más alineada con el lanzador está la pelota, más el receptor puede rodearla de la izquierda.
El receptor debe dar un paso más allá de la pelota con el pie derecho, estirarse para la pelota con ambas manos y alinear los hombros con el blanco para un tiro preciso.

BLOQUEAR EL PLATO/JUGADAS DE AGUANTAR

El dedo de pie izquierdo del receptor debe apuntarse con el talón puesto en la esquina frontal izquierda del territorio de foul.
La máscara debe quedarse para la protección.
El receptor debe estar en una posición estable y atlética, y debe tratar de atrapar la pelota con dos manos.
El receptor debe quedarse en el plato a menos que el tiro lo lleve a otro lugar.
Se debe aguantar con las dos manos agarrando la pelota.
El camino del corredor al plato debe quitarse primero con las canilleras.
Mantén blanda la parte arriba del cuerpo para suavizar una colisión.

LOS ELEVADITOS

El receptor debe perseguir cada elevadito. Comunica con los jugadores del cuadro para llamar la pelota.
En caso de un elevadito en los alrededores generales, el receptor debe dar la espalda al campo y dejar suficiente espacio para que la pelota vuelve hacia el campo.
En caso de una jugada fuera del plato el receptor debe quitar la máscara. Cuando la pelota está cerca al plato, la máscara debe tirarse cuando la pelota alcanza su altura máxima.
Siempre intenta atrapar la pelota con las dos manos, aproximadamente a la altura de la cabeza.

JUGADAS FORZADAS/DOBLE MATANZAS

En las jugadas forzadas o los comienzos de las doble matanzas, el receptor debe estar en una posición atlética y anticipar siempre un mal tiro.
El receptor debe mantener el pecho cuadrado al tiro que recibe.
En un out forzado, el receptor debe estar en el borde del plato y actuar como un defensor de primera base si es necesario.
En las doble matanzas, el receptor debe trabajar hacia el tiro y generar el momento hacia primera base.

BOLAS FRANCAS

El receptor debe posicionarse a horcajadas sobre la esquina exterior del plato.
Una vez que el brazo del lanzador empieza a moverse hacia el plato, el receptor puede empezar su juego de pies para alejarlos del bateador.
Anticipa siempre un mal lanzamiento.
Si se predice correctamente un intento de robar, haz un buen tiro y conseguir el out.

PASOS DEL JUEGO DE PIES PARA LA BOLA FRANCA


1. Paso lateral con el pie derecho.
2. Paso diagonal con el pie izquierdo hacia segunda base.
3. Paso corto con el pie derecho para alinearse con el tiro a segunda base.
4. Completar el juego de pies con el pie izquierdo pisando hacia el blanco para completar el tiro.

CORRE-CORRES

Siempre intenta impulsar al corredor de vuelta a tercera base.
Corre lo más fuerte posible, pero siempre quédate bajo control.
Haz un buen tiro a la altura del pecho. Nada de finta.
No dejes vacante el plato.


 Coach To Win Life, Not Games
(4/19/2019)
 
   

Coach To Win Life, Not Games


FUNdamental Skills
By Darren Fenster


Last month, a legend was laid to rest.  

A legend whose impact goes far beyond words; a legend who, through countless others, has impacted people he never even had a chance to meet. 

A couple years ago, a friend of mine had a pretty profound thought about what life was all about. He said, “we spend our entire lives selling tickets to our funeral.” Let that sink in for a second. For as somber as death can be, a funeral shows the lasting impact of how someone lived, through those to attend the services to pay their respects to the family.

Well, last month, Fred Hill sold out his funeral. 

-----

In September of 1996, I set foot on the Rutgers campus as an immature freshman baseball player who thought he had the game of baseball and the game of life both figured out. And then I started being around Fred Hill just about every day for the next four years who made sure, many days louder than others, that I got to know how much I truly didn't know.

When I had originally committed to go to Rutgers and to play for Coach Hill, I did so without really having any idea what I was getting myself into. I had no idea that I was going to embark on a life-shaping journey with a man who, aside from my parents, would have the greatest influence on my life. He was a second father to me.

Over the past month since his passing, my mind has been flooded with the memories of the twenty-plus years that I was blessed to have this man in my life. Some have me laughing out loud just as easily as others bring tears to my eyes, knowing how much of his life he invested, in mine. What all of these memories had in common was how he was teaching us life through the game. He was ALWAYS teaching us life. And we didn’t even know it. 

When he was always on our case about this or that, he was teaching us the importance of always doing things the right way.  Every time it was above 32 degrees and he had us playing an intersquad game in the University’s basketball arena parking lot, he was teaching us to take advantage of what we had, rather than complaining about what we didn’t.  When he kicked someone out of practice for showing up on time, he was teaching us accountability… and to always be early! When he benched someone for not hustling, he was teaching us that we owed it to ourselves and our team to give our best effort, all the time, in everything we do. 

When he would be the last one to leave the field because he was picking up garbage in the dugout he was actually teaching us how to be humble without ever feeling like we were too good to do something. And every time this ridiculously successful guy who won championships, coached All-Americans, and developed Major Leaguers asked US questions about the game and how HE could get better, he taught us how we should always be learning, no matter how much we knew. 

He is THE reason why I am a coach today. Coach Hill saw something in me before I was even ready to see it in myself upon the sudden end to my playing career. He gave me a second life in baseball, but more importantly, he gave me purpose to my life beyond baseball. If I can have just a tiny fraction of the impact on others that Fred Hill has had on me, my life will be a resounding success.

-----

 
Fred Hill turned me into a decent baseball player. And Fred Hill mentored me to become a pretty good baseball coach. But above all else, Fred Hill took me in as an immature 17 year-old kid, and over the course of the next 23 years right up until his passing, helped shape me into the man I am today.

Coach Hill may no longer be with us physically, but he will forever live inside of me, and countless other former players, coaches, friends, colleagues, and most importantly, family members whose lives he profoundly impacted, just by being Moose. While his coaching tree is impressive, it pales in comparison to the size of his life tree which has roots that go deep into the center of the earth and branches that can be seen for miles.

Over the course of his Hall of Fame coaching career, Fred Hill picked up over 1,000 victories on the diamond.  Without question, he taught us how to win games.  But for as successful he was as a coach; his true measure can be found in how well he taught us how to win life.


Darren Fenster is a contributor to the USA Baseball Sport Development Blog, and is currently the Manager of the Portland Sea Dogs, the Double-A affiliate of the Boston Red Sox. A former player in the Kansas City Royals minor league system, Fenster joined the Red Sox organization in 2012 after filling various roles on the Rutgers University Baseball staff, where he was a two-time All-American for the Scarlet Knights. Fenster is also Founder and CEO of Coaching Your Kids, LLC, and can be found on Twitter @CoachYourKids.


 El Defensor de Tercera Base
(4/23/2019)
 
   

El Defensor de Tercera Base


USA Baseball


Comúnmente denominada la “esquina caliente,” la tercera base es una de las posiciones más interesantes y más exigentes en el campo. El defensor de tercera base tiene que poder reconocer las situaciones del partido y adaptarse mientras cambia el partido. En esta posición, es importante que el defensor se mantenga alerto y concentrado durante el partido entero. La información que sigue contiene las claves primarias sobre el posicionamiento, el juego de pies, la recepción y el fildeo para los defensores de tercera base:

POSICIONAMIENTO DE TERCERA BASE


Regular: El defensor de tercera base debe jugar a unos seis pasos detrás de la almohadilla y tres pasos dentro de la línea. No obstante, esto es una estimación y debe cambiar según varios factores, tal como la rapidez del corredor, las tendencias del bateador o la fuerza del brazo del defensor de tercera base. Por ejemplo, el defensor de tercera base típicamente jugará alineado con la almohadilla para el primer bateador, ya que éste es un bateador que puede intentar tocar la pelota para un sencillo. Cuanto más alerto es el jugador del cuadro, mejor preparado estará en caso de que una pelota se golpee en su dirección.
Profundidad de Doble Matanza: En una situación de doble matanza, el defensor de tercera base debe estar a unos tres o cuatro pasos detrás de la almohadilla y dos o tres pasos dentro de la línea (sujeto a cambios según varios factores).
Cuadro Dentro:  Juega alineado con la almohadilla o un poco más allá del borde del césped y dos o tres pasos dentro de la línea. Esto permite que el defensor de tercera base tire al plato o aguante al corredor en la tercera base y tire a la primera base.
Toques: En una jugada de cobertura de toque, el defensor de tercera base debe empezar en el borde del césped, moviéndose hacia delante unos pasos mientras prepara el lanzador. Mientras el lanzador empieza su movimiento, el defensor de tercera base se carga al bateador, gritando “¡Toque!” Si el bateador no se cuadra para tocar, el defensor de tercera base debe correr al territorio de foul para evitar golpearse a una distancia tan cerca.

DOBLE MATANZA – ALIMENTACIONES A LA SEGUNDA BASE

Una vez que el defensor de tercera base fildee la roleta, debe girar hacia la segunda base, mantenerse bajo (no ponerse de pie) y tirar por encima del hombro al pecho del defensor de segunda base. En una barrida a su izquierda, el defensor de tercera base debe tirar desde rodillas a la segunda base sólo si puede hacer un tiro controlado.

PELOTAS GOLPEADAS AL JARDÍN IZQUIERDO

El defensor de tercera base debe ser agresivo y conseguir tantas pelotas golpeadas a su izquierda como pueda. En esta jugada, el defensor de tercera base tiene prioridad sobre el campo corto porque puede llegar a la pelota más rápidamente que el campo corto.

PERCATACIÓN DE TOQUE

Aunque el entrenador normalmente señale para una jugada de cobertura de toque, los jugadores del cuadro deben ser consciente de situaciones de toque en todo momento. Dependiendo de la situación, puede que el defensor de tercera base o el lanzador necesite cubrir después del toque.


 Training and Transfer (Part II)
(4/17/2019)
 
   

Training and Transfer (Part II) 


Coaching Absolutes
By Dave Turgeon


In Training and Transfer Part I, we discussed simple applications on how to improve how we carry our practice into the games effectively to perform and how competing makes players respect the game. In this part, we will discuss adding layers to the simple applications to take your on-field training to another level.

Train to the Truth 

The expression TRAIN TO THE TRUTH is simply doing things at game speed in our training with game-like focus and intent on all reps. We partly hit it already with our challenging and competitive hitting practice. We can now expand our focus to team fundamentals blended with hitting, defense and baserunning. We call this segment of practice a couple of different things. Sometimes we refer to it as the Jungle. Trevor Regan hits the analogy well and I use it in my thinking constantly. If you train at the zoo all day but have to perform in the Jungle at night, you are in for a hard time. Think about a lion who is born and raised in the zoo where everything is given to him daily. He never taps into or trains his speed, hunting, and aggression instincts. If that lion is put out into the Jungle after being brought up in the zoo, he is not going to perform or live long for that matter! If your training is more zoo than jungle, re-evaluate it. The speed of the Jungle will overwhelm your players if they have not been there. The other word we use when blending our work is our Fundamedley. This is a simple set up that starts with an I-screen or an L-screen. We have 2 groups of defense and offense, and a coach pitching behind the screen with a pitcher on the mound. This is a live scrimmage that is scripted out on paper but the action it produces is all unpredictable like the game is. For example, inning 1 may begin with a runner on second base and 0 outs and let the inning run from there. We are now situationally hitting, defending, and baserunning with whatever happens. The coach is using a full mix of pitches from up close to simulate reaction times of high velocity. Inning 2 may start with runners on first and second and no outs. Again, the coach will then run his defense, the other coach will run the offense and play it live from there. The beauty of the Fundamedley is the coaches are getting game speed reps also. Adding layers to all this, we will use a scoreboard to give the inning and score and counts, which is the information that dictates our decision making on the field. This GRILL (GAME LIKE DRILL) can be used in endless ways. And most importantly, the environment we have set up has again forced players to RESPECT THE REP. Get out of the ZOO and start living in the JUNGLE in your training. The transfer and performance come game time will reflect more and more where you live the most! Warning: the action that takes place in the Jungle may be messy at times. This is good! Learning is messy and recognizing when a group/individual is learning and allow this messiness to take place is showing maturity as a coach. When your work is clean it is telling you that players have learned this already and they need more. Be prepared to add layers to whatever they do because they learn at an incredible rate of speed! 

The Gap 

The messiness of learning we are talking about was described by our Mental Conditioning Director, Bernie Holliday as The Gap. The Gap is that area just beyond their current abilities. Go beyond The Gap and you are killing confidence. Push ‘em into that gap and there is stretching and growing that is happening. Players are figuring it out. Whether it is a new mechanic or a decision-making play, there is sure to be messiness involved here. That is the art of coaching, knowing where they are as a group and as individuals and pushing them just beyond. The analogy to learning may be lifting weights with a partner and having him help you through those last 2 reps. The last 2 reps got you into the gap and got you stronger. Getting players into the Gap = Learning = Transfer!

Training Beyond the Truth 

Daniel Coyle’s book entitled “The Talent Code” inspired this next segment of training several years back. In the book, he studied how the Brazilians had so consistently dominated the soccer world, discovered the game of futsal, and how it became a breeding ground for super skilled soccer players. Futsal is essentially the game of soccer played on a much smaller field. Everything happens much faster (decision-making and skills) than on a bigger field so that when they go back to the big field, the game is slowed down while actually playing and thinking at a greater speed. I ended up thinking about doing the fundamedley of bunting on it with 70-foot bases. The results were amazing. The field was so messy and fast (learning is messy!!!) but in just a short time it got cleaner as players learned quickly. This shrunken game of bunt defense created some challenging skill work, decision-making, and helped them slow the game down come game time. It’s okay to make the training even more challenging than what they may face because now we are building real confidence. Training beyond the truth = faster processing = transfer! Another example of this is the use of handballs (not to be confused with racquet balls) with infielders. While coaching at Duke back in 2006, Sean McNally used handballs to sharpen the skills of infielders. The handballs training (done with and without a glove) was actually hop reading and decision making on steroids as it was beyond the speed of the game they would face. Once the defenders were recalibrated to normal game speed and space, the common feedback that we would get from players was how much slower the game was to them. The handball work is not limited to the infielders. Handballs infiltrated our big-league camp last year and were used in the pitchers fielding practice (pfp) development of the pitchers. They have been used in the catching and outfield areas as well. Warning: the use of handballs can be messy at times. That is okay, they are learning! 

Expecting to Teach and Teaching Creates More Transfer 

Friend and colleague Andy Bass shared a study with me by Daou, Lohse, and Miller in 2016 entitled “Expecting To Teach Enhances Motor Learning and Information Processing During Practice.” It was done with a large number of golfers and the premise of the study was to determine or measure the transfer benefits of having to teach a skill and then perform it. The interesting twist, however, was that when the players who were told they were going to have to teach putting and its details the following day they then were told they did not have to. Remarkably the group who were told they were going to have to teach putting far outperformed the other group in terms of learning and transfer. The act of preparing to teach a skill deepened the learning and led to greater transfer when performing the skill. I have used this method with my players but have allowed them to actually teach. Now the phenomenon that was exposed in this study is real, but I believe the actual teaching aspect takes it to another level. I have found that the player or players doing the teaching are completely engaged, and witnessing players teaching players is a wonderful thing. I have done this in all phases of the game and also including some culture building exercises. A great example of this on the baseball side is using the players to teach a fundamental and give them a one-day advance to prepare. I will usually have gone through all the fundamentals and training once before turning it over to the players. They will be required to give the explanation verbally and then show it using either whiteboard or video. I have also used the players to teach Pirates core convictions with explanations and videos and preparation all left to them. Generally, the players will knock it out of the park and the other byproduct of using this method is more ownership of their development. Along the same lines of teaching and expecting to teach, I have assigned players to break down different areas of the game postgame, letting them know beforehand to be ready to debrief post game what they have seen. The amount of engagement of the players is phenomenal as they are now watching intensely and learning as well. If you find the feedback lacks certain things, then we as coaches can fill in the cracks when needed. Players will astound you as to what they see and know if we allow it. Most importantly, we have found out exactly where they are and where we can now take them. Allowing players to teach one another = deeper learning = more ownership = transfer! Warning: If you choose to allow the players into the teaching you and your staff will also be learning! Players see things we do not and if we do not show them, we learn from them we have not truly given them permission to learn from us! 




Turgeon is a contributor to the USA Baseball Sport Development Blog, and is the Coordinator of Instruction for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Turgeon played in the New York Yankees farm system from 1987-1990 under Stump Merrill and Buck Showalter after being drafted out of Davidson College. Before playing for the Baltimore Orioles’ AAA affiliate in 1998 he spent eight years playing abroad. From 2000-2001 Turgeon began coaching in the Cleveland Indians organization before entering the college ranks where he coached with Boston College, the University of Connecticut, Duke University and Virginia Tech.


 Preparación Antes del Lanzamiento para los Bateadores
(4/18/2019)
 
   

Una filosofía de entrenamiento de béisbol


USA Baseball


El éxito de un bateador es íntimamente relacionado con el nivel de confianza que siente al plato. Igual que cualquier otro aspecto del deporte, la preparación mental contribuye mucho al resultado de cualquier turno al bate. Antes de entrar en la caja de bateo, el jugador debe saber la situación en la que se encuentra para que esté preparado mentalmente para lograr éxito. Aún más importante, el bateador debe creer en sus habilidades como jugador, y los entrenadores pueden ayudar con eso.

RUTINAS MENTALES

 ANTES DEL PARTIDO
Averiguar quién va a lanzar
Visualizar golpear sus lanzamientos
Observar al lanzador cuando está calentándose para ver el movimiento y la locación de los lanzamientos

 EN LA CASETA

Observar al lanzador
Hablar con bateadores previos
Buscar patrones
Buscar señales y cualquier cosa que hace el lanzador cuando tira lanzamientos diferentes

EN EL CÍRCULO DE ESPERA


Formular un plan para el turno al bate
Saber la situación
Anticipar los lanzamientos
Controlar las emociones

EN EL CAMINO AL PLATO

Mantener una actitud positiva
Creer que su preparación va a dar buenos resultados
No tener ninguna duda en sus habilidades
 RUTINAS FÍSICAS

EN EL CÍRCULO DE ESPERA


Relajarse
Lograr sincronización con el lanzador
Ver el punto de soltar y seguir la pelota
Enfocarse en la carga temprana (empezar antes del punto de soltar)
Respirar

EN LA CAJA DE BATEO


Usar la misma rutina para cada lanzamiento
Vaciar la mente (despejar todos los pensamientos después de cada lanzamiento)
Piloto Automático (dejar que los ojos tomen el control)
Confiar en si mismo
Acordarse de respirar

Como entrenador, debes reconocer las señales de alerta de cada bateador y ayudarles a enfocarse en los pensamientos positivos si empiezan a dudarse. Enseñar durante los partidos requiere reforzamiento positivo, nunca más que con los bateadores.


 Los Básicos Fundamentales de Aguantar al Corredor
(4/16/2019)
 
   

Los Básicos Fundamentales de Aguantar al Corredor y la Jugada de Sorpresa 


USA Baseball

Algunas de las medidas las más eficaces que un lanzador puede tomar cuando aguanta a corredores pueden cumplirse aún sin tirar la pelota. El objetivo primario del lanzador cuando aguanta a corredores es lanzarles de ritmo y mantenerles incómodo, no realizar una jugada de sorpresa. Tumbar la cadencia y la comodidad de un corredor puede reducir en gran medida la probabilidad de que el corredor robe bases, tome bases extras y esté en posiciones para interrumpir jugadas defensivas. A continuación se ven algunas técnicas que un lanzador puede utilizar para lograr esto:

Variar la cantidad de tiempo que el lanzador agarra la pelota cuando se prepara antes de enviar el lanzamiento.
El lanzador debe tener un tiempo rápido de envío al plato – unos 1.4 segundos o menos.
Para corredores que representan una amenaza de robar las bases, puede que el lanzador quiera llegar a agarres prolongados y bajarse sin tirar.

Hay varias razones por las cuales un lanzador puede querer intentar una jugada de sorpresa. La más obvia es una tentativa de conseguir un out o por tocar al corredor o por atraparlo en un corre-corre. Sin embargo, se pueden intentar jugadas de sorpresa por otras razones también, tal como intentar hacer que el ataque señale una jugada de toque. Las jugadas de sorpresa en estas situaciones a menudo se señalan por un entrenador.

JUGADA DE SORPRESA DIESTRA A LA PRIMERA BASE:

Por regla general, el lanzador tiene que “ganar terreno” hacia la primera base.
La implementación del “giro de brinco” es el uso el más eficiente de tiempo y energía. 
El lanzador hace un brinco pequeño con ambos pies al mismo tiempo y usa el pie derecho para pivotar hacia la primera base.
Luego, el lanzador da un paso corto hacia la primera base con el pie izquierdo, mientras hace simultáneamente un tiro corto y rápido al primera base.
Una vez que se desvincule de la goma, el lanzador tiene que hacer el tiro, o se castigará con un balk. Debe caminar hacia la primera base después de hacer el tiro para seguir “ganando terreno” a los ojos del árbitro.

JUGADA DE SORPRESA ZURDA A LA PRIMERA BASE:

Por regla general, el lanzador tiene que “ganar terreno” hacia la primera base.
Los lanzadores zurdos pueden tirar a la primera base fuera de su envío, es decir, imitar una patada de pierna al plato y después tirar la pelota a la primera base para intentar la jugada de sorpresa.
La patada del lanzador durante una jugada de sorpresa debe parecer a su envío natural al plato tanto como sea posible.
El lanzador continúa el movimiento de la patada y dar un paso hacia la primera base, seguido por un tiro rápido al primera base.
Mientras el lanzador se hace más cómodo con su movimiento de sorpresa, puede trabajar en variar los vistazos entre el plato y la primera base para confundir al corredor.

JUGADA DE SORPRESA A LA SEGUNDA BASE:

Un lanzador puede usar dos movimientos diferentes a la segunda base. 
Con un movimiento de reverso, el lanzador ejecuta un giro de brinco de 180 grados hacia la segunda base. Mientras que este movimiento permita rapidez y sorpresa, requiere el atletismo o como alternativa es propenso a un tiro errante.
El lanzador ejecuta un giro de brinco parecido a la jugada de sorpresa del lanzador diestro a la primera base. No obstante, el brinco-reverso aquí es un giro de 180 grados, no de 90 grados.
El lanzador debe usar la mano de no tirar en acuerdo con las piernas para permitir que pase el lado frontal y haga un tiro preciso.
Otro movimiento de sorpresa a la segunda base es un movimiento de reverso desde la patada de pierna natural del envío del lanzador.
El lanzador empieza su envío al plato. Una vez que llegue a la patada de pierna, pivota el pie que está engranado con la goma y gira hacia la segunda base para hacer el tiro.
El lanzador tiene que ganar terreno hacia la segunda base cuando hace el tiro.
Igual que una jugada de sorpresa zurda en la primera base, la patada de pierna del lanzador durante esta jugada de sorpresa debe parecer a su envío natural al plato tanto como sea posible.

CORREDOR EN LA TERCERA BASE

Los intentos de hacer una jugada de sorpresa en la tercera base son rarísimos. El lanzador quiere estar consciente del corredor en caso de una jugada de cuña o un robo directo (si trabaja desde el wind-up). Muchas veces, el receptor puede controlar a corredores que muestran la intención de robar en la tercera base (o todas las otras bases) con una sorpresa al revés propia.


 Goal-Setting
(4/10/2019)
 
   

Goal-Setting 


Cuddyer's Corner
By Michael Cuddyer


Former Major Leaguer Michael Cuddyer explains why it is important to set goals at the long-term, intermediate and immediate levels in order to accomplish what you want to achieve. To have your questions answered by Michael Cuddyer, submit them using #USABMailbag on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter.


Michael Cuddyer is a contributor to the USA Baseball Sport Development blog, and is a 15-year MLB veteran and two-time All-Star, spending his career playing for the Minnesota Twins, Colorado Rockies and the New York Mets. A member of the USA Baseball 18U National Team in 1996 and 1997, Cuddyer was then named the 1997 Virginia Player of the Year, Gatorade National Player of the Year, and was a member of USA Today’s All-Star team. He was selected ninth overall in the 1997 MLB Amateur Player Draft by the Minnesota Twins.


 Refining Pitching Mechanics
(4/16/2019)
 
   

Refining Pitching Mechanics 


Diamond Doc
By Dr. Marc Richard


Dr. Marc Richard, Orthopedic Surgeon at Duke University and USA Baseball Sport Development Contributor, shares how consistently utilizing the proper mechanics and components of throwing a successful pitch can be the key to avoiding injuries on the mound. To have your questions answered by Dr. Richard, submit them using #USABMailbag on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter.


Marc Richard, MD, is a contributor to the USA Baseball Sport Development Blog, and is an Associate Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at Duke University, specializing in elbow, wrist and hand injuries. Dr. Richard’s research evaluates the clinical outcomes of fractures of the upper extremity, with a particular interest in wrist and elbow fractures and improving ways to treat elbow arthritis in young patients. He also has a clinical and research interest in adolescent elbow throwing injuries.


 Sports Performance Anxiety in Youth Sports
(4/11/2019)
 
   

Sport Performance Anxiety


In youth sports


Youth sport advice tends to focus on improving athlete nutrition and training. But even in a “fun” league, sometimes the most harmful stressors aren’t in athlete’s bodies, but in their heads.

For many kids, sports provide their first taste of anxiety: the stress of taking a game-tying free throw, the tension of running the anchor leg of a relay, or just butterflies in the stomach before a big game.

Anyone who has played sports has probably experienced sport performance anxiety, sometimes called ‘choking,’ at one point or another. But with their brains and self-awareness still developing, sports can be particularly stressful on the minds of youth athletes. This also means it can be especially challenging for parents and coaches to try and soothe these nerves.

The most serious sport anxiety can also make kids lose interest in playing sports altogether. Thankfully, the growing field of sport psychology has given parents, coaches, and athletes ways to understand and calm the pre-game jitters.
 
What Causes Sport Performance Anxiety

Mental stress on gameday is typically rooted in at least one of several factors. Many of these have more to do with everything surrounding the game, before and after, than the actual game itself.

Having an audience (particularly one that is loving and supportive): Athletes can become overly self-aware of every decision and play they make when they’re on the athletic stage.

Fear of disappointing others: Even when a parent or coach is supportive, athletes may be anxious about disappointing them.

High expectations: Every athlete wants to do their best, but internal self-talk might create stress when they set expectations that anything less than a perfect play is failure.

Post-game analysis: Whether it is from a coach, parent, teammate, or themselves, the post-game analysis weighs on an athlete’s mindset.

Recovering from an injury: After an athlete gets hurt, it can take a long time to restore their confidence.

How Youth Athletes Can Cope

Sport anxiety’s kryptonite is preparation. Athletes should arrive early and go through the same warm-up routines they do in practice. During warm-ups, they should try and visualize themselves playing well while taking some deep, slow breaths. This will put their heads in a focused and relaxed place.

During the game, focusing on the next play, rather than the result, will help keep athletes in the moment. Another simple trick to stay relaxed, even in high-pressure moments, is to smile. If you go through the physical motions of having fun, the mind will follow!

What Coaches and Parents Can Do

Parents and coaches can help reduce sport performance anxiety with the language they use before, during, and after games. Be wary of only praising athletes when things go right – a good rule of thumb to avoid adding stress is to praise effort instead of the result. As a coach, it can help to avoid instruction that adds extra pressure to a game situation (e.g., “we have to score in this next inning!”).

Studies have shown that we stay out of our heads more when performing actions we might describe as “muscle memory.” At practice, having athletes do many repetitions of the movements they will be expected to do on gameday (e.g., fielding ground balls) is a good way to ensure they become second nature.

Coaches can also simulate game-type pressure in practice by playing music or recorded crowd noise, having parents stay to watch, or adding in other elements that will get athletes used to performing under stress. It’s important to make sure athletes are familiar with and confident in the strategies that are going to be used on gameday.

As a parent, be sure to keep specific post-game comments positive and remember that the time to make corrections is at the next practice, not immediately after a game in the car ride home.


TrueSport®, a movement powered by the experience and values of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, champions the positive values and life lessons learned through youth sport. TrueSport® inspires athletes, coaches, parents, and administrators to change the culture of youth sport through active engagement and thoughtful curriculum based on cornerstone lessons of sportsmanship, character-building, and clean and healthy performance, by creating leaders across communities through sport.