Philosophy - Keep it Fun and Simple

The first thing to remember as an instructor is that everyone learns differently. Take the time to learn how the student learns and find a way to gain their trust before shoving a bunch of complicated information down their throat. An important thing to consider is whether your student needs to be pushed, encouraged or both. Everyone is motivated differently.

Asking someone to change everything just because you told them to is simply not going to work. No one is going to commit to making a change unless you have their trust and you can show them why making a change will benefit them. Making a change can be very difficult if for no other reason then it means admitting you aren't good enough right now. People don't like to admit that and they also like to be right. It's human nature and that's why is so hard to change anything. If you don't realize this, then you are in for a battle with helping anyone or helping yourself make a change for the better. Since bad habits are usually driven be the urge to what to do well, they can be very difficult to break unless you can convince the student to make the process more important than the results.

My goal as an instructor has and always will be to be your 2nd best instructor. The student should always strive to be their best instructor. If they never learn to think for themselves, then they will never develop the baseball instincts necessary to react quickly enough to make adjustments on the fly. I have realized over the years that my experience as a player, coach and parent of a player cannot help a player while they are in the act of hitting, fielding or throwing a ball. If we try to control every little thing during the game as a coach or parent, then we take all the fun out of it for the player.

If I am unable to teach the student how to learn and make adjustments for themselves, then they will never be able to take what they have learned in the cage or at practice out onto the field in an actual game where it really matters. Everybody learns differently and there is more than one way to do things well. Certain things like keeping your eye on the ball or getting one's foot down early when hitting are crucial for success (absolutes), there are other things that we can have our own styles with like batting stance and whether to take a step or not when hitting. I typically don't change a person's style right away but like to get them to understand what it takes to absolutely be successful as a player. Over the years I have developed the easiest styles to get the absolutely important stuff done more often.

Never think you know it all. The minute you think you do is when you stop learning. Ask questions and find out why things are the way they are. Don't be afraid to make mistakes, they allow us to learn. When all else fails, keep it fun and simple! It's supposed to be hard and fun game to PLAY!