Even though you prepare really well for your baseball game, you might still make a mistake somewhere. Since you are not perfect, then you are still prone to making an error if you are not careful. Even the best players who hold the best softball bats from the market make mistakes, so don’t worry so much if you also make one or two.
If you do make a mistake however, you should not let it affect the way you play afterwards. If you let it get to you, then you will not be able to play well. Remember, it is not all about preventing mistakes, but it is about knowing how to react to one.
If you are a coach, then your responsibility is not just teaching the team the necessary skills that they need to play the game, but also the skills that they need to develop their character. Positive reaction to mistakes is one of them. You have to try minimizing mistakes while teaching your players to stand up after they fall too.
Stress management is one of the ways players can cope whenever they make a blunder. Stress that athletes usually feel is stress that comes from pressure to win or do well. If a player is playing a really crucial game that will decide the fate of the team, then expect that there’s going to be a lot of pressure coming from the coach, the sponsors, and the fans. Pressure will lead to stress and stress that is not managed well will lead to mistakes. Stress plus mistakes leads to anger and disappointment. So what is the remedy to deal with stress that comes from pressure? What can you do to help your team not experience too much pressure? Here are some tips that may help.
Number one on the list is to practice so hard that playing a game is considered a cakewalk. The problem with a lot of coaches is that they do not grill their players hard enough during practice because it’s “just practice”. This is wrong. What you should do is you should make practice really hard and pressure the players during practice. That way, the players will not feel that much pressure anymore during games because they are used to it.
Second, always start off with a 0-2 count right away during practice. If a batter misses one swing, then they are automatically out. This will put more pressure on the players and will force them to perform at their peak since practice is already really hard anyway. You should also let your batter perfect the art of bunting. The batter must always bunt a fair ball otherwise there will be a consequence.
Third, always prepare your team for any kind of situation. Teams would usually get shaken up if something out of the ordinary happens. So as a coach, you have to try to give your team as many possible situations and teach your players how to react. This way, they’ll stay confident that no matter what situation they’ll be in, they can surpass it.
Fourth, never add insult to injury. Allow your team to fail and learn from it. Always reassure your players that it is okay to fail as long as they learn from it. The players are already beating themselves for losing. A coach should not be the source of a further beatdown.
Lastly, you should never favor some players over the other. This will not only create pressure among the less favored, but also resentment. So treat everyone equally so that there will be absolutely no tension in the team.
As for the players, they can also do something to help themselves reduce pressure or stress. They can try positive affirmation or positive thinking which is a mental conditioning practice that helps a person think only positive thoughts. They can also rely on each other for support because playing as a team means sharing each other’s pain as well.
Everyone makes mistakes one way or another. Even great batters or pitchers with impeccable skills and the best softball bats in the world can make mistakes. But what makes them great? It is simply their ability to know how to get up and learn from a failure. That trait is what will make a player a champion.