Tuesday, January 16th, 2018

Just in time learning for new coaches

March 22, 2017 by  
Filed under Coaching

Get out there and learn as you go!

Entering the coaching world for the first time can be pretty stressful.  You realize very quickly that being in charge of a team is very different from only having to worry about your own performance and growth as a player.  As a coach, you worry about every player’s performance and growth.

There is so much information about coaching and playing the game out there that new coaches often suffer from information overload.  Heck, just this site alone has over 1500 posts and close to 300 videos that teach various aspects of baseball.

Unfortunately, many good people don’t get into coaching because they feel they do not know enough about the game.

That’s why I recommend the concept of “just in time learning.”  It involves the basic idea of learning as you go.  If you wait until you get a solid understanding of every area of the game before you start coaching then you probably would never start coaching.  

If a pitcher has trouble throwing a change-up then go out and learn some tips for better change-ups and pass them on to him.  If a hitter has trouble hitting the inside pitch then hop online and search for a couple hitting drills that address the issue.  “Just in time” learning gets you on the field and streamlines your learning to what is needed instead of learning tons of information that you may not need until years down the road.

Baseball needs good people in the game who care about kids and the game of baseball.  Don’t let your lack of knowledge keep you away.  Use “just in time learning” and get on the field!


One Response to “Just in time learning for new coaches”
  1. Bryan Clayton says:

    Bob, I used to be a music teacher, it was an excellent career and I can’t say enough about the kids I was able to work with. I can tell you that being a great music teacher required you to do many things, two in particular. 1. Be one lesson ahead of your students 2. Know when the pupil had mastered his peer.

    In Baseball, I’ve learned that both of these ideas are transferable. I’ve learned as a coach that I need to be one practice ahead of my players. That leads me to understand that I’m teaching/coaching this today, so that I can teach/coach that next time.

    I’ve also seen that there are players on some teams, particularly with the amount of individual lessons these days, that may know more than I do. As an example, I’ve never been a pitcher in my life so I can’t say much to an advanced pitcher. That doesn’t mean that I can’t be their coach though. There were things in music that were universal, as there are in baseball. The mental game is a good example. I can still be a resource to players in that area, but I know when I need to call in an expert or specialist.

    Thanks for this post, as always, I appreciate the dialogue.


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