Sport Development Blog

 The Career Impact of Playing Youth Sports
(6/20/2019)
 
 
   

The Career Impact of Playing Youth Sports


In youth sports


As parents, we all like to think we’re steering our children toward activities and opportunities that will help them lead happy, productive, and fulfilling lives. We encourage them to work hard, have integrity, take risks, show gratitude, be respectful, etc. But at some point, deep down, every parent realizes there are no guarantees. There’s no formula that ensures success, but there are definitely behaviors, activities, and opportunities that increase the chances your child will become a successful, ethical, and happy adult. According to recent research, participation in youth sports is one them.

A 2014 study by Kniffin, Wansink, and Shimizu examined how participation in high school sports correlated with a person’s behaviors and accomplishments later in life. Here are some of their findings:

Hiring Managers Preferentially Hire Student Athletes

Parents often look to youth sports to help their children develop leadership skills, self-confidence, and self-respect. According to the research from Kniffin and his colleagues, managers looking to hire people for entry-level jobs have the expectation former student athletes possess those skills and traits, which gives them a competitive advantage. They even looked at whether this advantage was specifically associated with sports, or whether participation in any organized activity provided the same advantage. Compared to former band and yearbook members, former student athletes were perceived by managers to have greater leadership skills, self-confidence, and self-respect.

Former Student Athletes Advance Faster

Certain lessons learned through sports help young workers advance in their careers. Youth sports expose kids to organizational leaders (coaches) early on, which research has shown to be an important component of learning leadership skills. Team sports also “reward group-level achievements and appear to facilitate the enforcement of group-serving behavior.” In other words, former student athletes are better team players in a career setting, and grow to become leaders 
who strive for the success of the team.

Former Student Athletes Have Higher Wages at 30 years old

Supporting prior research, a 2010 study by Betsey Stevenson showed participation in high school sports had a positive effect on the amount of education people attained, the likelihood of being employed as an adult, and the wages they earned. Stevenson’s work focused on the effect of Title IX on the success of women in the workforce, and two results of particular note were that 1) Higher wages only correlated with participation in high school sports, and not any other extracurricular activities, and 2) Title IX led to a substantial increase in the percentage of women who subsequently pursued traditionally male-dominated, higher-wage careers.

Former Student Athletes Are More Likely to Give Back

Another component of the study by Knifflin and his colleagues examined philanthropic behaviors of former student athletes 60 years after high school. They found that older men who participated in volunteer work or donated money to charitable causes were more likely to have participated in high school sports, and particularly, exhibited leadership traits in high school sports.

Overall, former student athletes earned more money, advanced to more senior career positions, and were more likely than non-athletes to volunteer and donate money as older adults.

It is important to note, the researchers referenced in this article acknowledged they could only show correlation, and not causation. They couldn’t answer whether the people who earned more, advanced further, and were more philanthropic achieved those outcomes because they participated in sport or if the traits that helped them succeed later in life also drew them to participate in sport in the first place.

Either way, participating in high school sports is a winning proposition!

References:
Kniffin, Kevin M., et al. “Sports at Work.” Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies, vol. 22, no. 2, 2014, pp. 217–230., doi:10.1177/1548051814538099.
Stevenson, Betsey. “Beyond the Classroom: Using Title IX to Measure the Return to High School Sports.” 2010, doi:10.3386/w15728.


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.


 Blisters
(6/25/2019)
 
 
   

Blisters


Diamond Doc
By Dr. Marc Richard


Dr. Marc Richard, Orthopedic Surgeon at Duke University and USA Baseball Sport Development Contributor, discusses the causes and issues associated with blisters, as well as how to prevent and treat them. 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.


 Misplayed Throw Down on a Steal Attempt
(6/24/2019)
 
 
   

Misplayed Throw Down on a Steal Attempt


Monday Manager
By Tom Succow


In this edition of Monday Manager, four-time USA Baseball coaching alum Tom Succow shares the things that should go right, as well as what could go wrong, in an attempt to erase a stealing baserunner with a throw down from the catcher.

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.


 GIRD and Post-Pitching Recovery
(6/11/2019)
 
 
   

GIRD and Post-Pitching Recovery


Diamond Doc
By Dr. Marc Richard


Dr. Marc Richard, Orthopedic Surgeon at Duke University and USA Baseball Sport Development Contributor, discusses Glenohumeral internal rotation deficit (GIRD), which is an adaptive process in which the throwing shoulder experiences a loss of internal rotation, and how to mitigate its affects after pitching. 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.


 Helping Your Team Beyond the Box Score
(6/14/2019)
 
 
   

Helping Your Team Beyond the Box Score


FUNdamental Skills
By Darren Fenster


Baltimore, Maryland.

Red Sox. Orioles.

These two American League East foes found themselves in a tie ballgame when Trey Mancini stepped to the plate with one out in the bottom 11th, ready to send the Camden Yards faithful home happy. With one swing, it appeared as if he had done just that, driving a Ryan Brasier fastball deep to center. The crack of the bat was that sound hitters love to hear. On the mound, Boston’s pitcher’s head immediately went down when he heard it. And Xander Bogaerts barely moved at shortstop when he saw it.  Both thought the game was over. 
 
And it would have been, had it not been for Jackie Bradley, Jr. 

On that crack of the bat that deflated Brasier and paralyzed Bogaerts, Bradley turned, put his head down, and started running back into deep centerfield. Lining the ball up almost perfectly in stride and scaling the wall as if it was a part of the outfield grass, the Red Sox Gold Glove winning centerfielder reached with his glove from his perch atop the wall into the Orioles bullpen and caught the ball, robbing what would have been a walk-off home run for Mancini.

The play went down in the scorecard as a simple F8.  It was played on highlight shows for the days that followed but has since been largely forgotten. What should never be forgotten, however, are the many ways a player can help his team win that aren’t seen in the numbers. 

At the time of his game-saving catch, Bradley was hitting .142 for the season and, for the game, hitless in three at bats, including two strikeouts. Last October, he was a vital cog in the Red Sox World Series title run and was named ALCS Most Valuable Player along the way. While his offensive production hasn’t yet gotten back to his Fall Classic form this season, Jackie Bradley, Jr. reminded us with his glove that the game is not only about what you do with the bat and exemplifies that player who is contributing to his team’s success without necessarily producing runs. His ability to continue being an elite defender despite his offensive struggles also highlights the importance of being able to separate the game, mentally.

That combination is what championship players are made of.

No sport is more discouraging than baseball, where, as we’ve all heard ad nauseum, failing seven out of ten times makes you the best of the best. That frequency of failure is extremely challenging to deal with and often results in hitter’s bringing at bats out into the field- which sets them up for defensive miscues- or pitchers still worrying about a previous inning or hitter instead of focusing on the next inning or better. But when coaches consistently make their players aware of the many facets of the game that in the end play into a win or a loss, they will far more likely be able to move on from a bad AB, a bad inning, or a bad play. 

We all know how much players live and die by the numbers on the back of their baseball card. But championship teams win championships in large part for what their players do in the parts of the game that are NOT seen on the back of that card. Sometimes, a productive out can be more valuable than a base hit. Sometimes, something as simple as throwing the ball to the correct base may be the one play that puts a team in a position to win a game. And sometimes, something like a pitcher minimizing damage in the 2nd inning may be the reason why a team is still within striking distance in the 9th. 

While a player’s stat line may not look pretty, that doesn’t mean that player can’t actually have the type of game that helps his team win. The best players in our game are the ones who can take their game far beyond the box score. 


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.


 Accountability
(6/5/2019)
 
   

Accountability


Cuddyer's Corner
By Michael Cuddyer


Former Major Leaguer Michael Cuddyer discusses the importance of being accountable for your actions on and off the diamond. 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.


 Fielding a Ground Ball as a Pitcher
(6/10/2019)
 
   

Fielding a Ground Ball as a Pitcher


Monday Manager
By Tom Succow


In this edition of Monday Manager, four-time USA Baseball coaching alum Tom Succow discusses the challenges of fielding a ground ball after delivering a pitch, and why pitchers' fielding practice (PFP) is a crucial component of training. 


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.


 Take A Lap
(6/6/2019)
 
   

Take A Lap


Alternatives to Exercise as Punishment


For generations, using exercise as punishment in youth sports was the norm. The practice has even been romanticized, like in the movie Miracle where hockey players are forced to skate seemingly endless ‘suicide’ drills after a bad loss.

“Drop and give me 20.”

“Take a lap.”

“The losers of this drill have to do five extra sprints at the end of practice.”

But in a time when people already have enough trouble getting exercise, it’s a disservice to use exercise as punishment, which paints it as something negative instead of something that should be enjoyed.

In fact, using exercise as a disciplinary tool is considered corporal punishment and thereby illegal in more than half of U.S. states, several of which also have laws against withholding exercise (e.g., keeping kids from recess). The Society of Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE) has also made an official statement shunning the practice.  

At the end of the day, youth athletes are still kids. So, if taking more laps at the end of practice shouldn’t be used as punishment, what can be done to hold athletes accountable?
 
Alternative 1: Verbal Warning

Even if an athlete has a penchant for acting independently from the team, sometimes being called out in front of peers can be enough to create a positive behavior change.

Be wary, however, that drawing attention to misbehavior can feel like a reward to some kids, so consider carefully whether a one-on-one approach would be more effective than addressing them in front of the entire group.
 
Alternative 2: Academic and Non-Traditional Punishments

If coaching a school-sponsored team, research if school-related punishments, such as before or after school detention, can be handed out to youth athletes that violate their team or sport rules. In addition to being an effective punishment any student-athlete would want to avoid, it might further underscore the importance of acting in a mature manner in organized settings.

Instead of exercise as punishment, the United Kingdom’s education secretary once explained the value of alternate and equally undesirable punishments, such as “writing lines, picking up litter in playgrounds, weeding, tidying classrooms and removing graffiti,” that would not blacken an athlete’s view of exercise.

For athletes on non-school teams, this idea could transpose into cleaning up the playing field after practice, or writing an essay about their role on the team or why it’s important to keep a cool-head.

Alternative 3: Brief Removal

If an athlete’s transgression resulted from frustrations about a call or heated moment during a game, it’s the coach’s responsibility to step in and pull that player from the game for as long as it takes. Depending on their role on the team, the punishment might come with the added of weight of having to watch their teammates struggle without them.  

Not allowing them to re-enter until they have regained their composure also communicates that their behavior has no place in sports, no matter how frustrating the context. Explain that it’s the coach’s job to discuss issues with the referee or to point out dangerous play, not theirs.  
 
Alternative 4: League Action

If a misbehaving player’s infraction is something that is endangering other players, it may be time to have the league or conference get involved. Depending on the seriousness of the offense, the league might bar the player from playing for a game or more.

Often just making athletes aware that removal is a possibility, whether at the beginning of the season or when they start to act out, is enough to elicit a positive behavior change.
 
Alternative 5: Establish Expectations

The need for any disciplinary action can possibly be avoided before the season begins by firmly establishing behavioral expectations, such as always shaking opponent’s hands after the game, participating to the best of one’s abilities in drills, and never shouting at a ref. It’s also important to clearly define the punishment for such behavior.

Setting goals that all athletes and the team feel strongly about can also reinforce positive behavior.
In the end, it’s about creating an environment that athletes want to support and finding ways to create behavior change in a positive way.


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 Sleeper Stretch
(5/28/2019)
 
   

The Sleeper Stretch


Diamond Doc
By Dr. Marc Richard


Dr. Marc Richard, Orthopedic Surgeon at Duke University and USA Baseball Sport Development Contributor, discusses how pitchers lose the ability to rotate internally at the shoulder of their throwing arm, and how stretches like the sleeper stretch can help to correct that deficiency. 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.


 El Espíritu Deportivo
(6/4/2019)
 
   

El Espíritu Deportivo


USA Baseball


Uno de los rasgos de carácter que los deportes pueden enseñar a los niños es el espíritu deportivo. El espíritu deportivo quiere decir usar la regla de oro en los deportes: tratar a los otros como quisieras ser tratado. Esto incluye ser justo, respetuoso y honesto. El espíritu deportivo es un rasgo importante tan para los padres como para los atletas. Usted puede ayudar a su hijo a aprender la importancia del espíritu deportivo a través de hablar sobre el tema con él o ella, además de mostrarlo mientras usted le anima de las gradas.

Usted debe empezar por explicar a sus atletas qué es el espíritu deportivo. El espíritu deportivo supone:

Jugar limpio.
Ser honesto.
Seguir las reglas del juego.
Respetar a los árbitros, a los entrenadores, a los compañeros de equipo y al equipo opuesto en todo momento.
Recordar la regla de oro de tratar a los otros como quisieras ser tratado.

El espíritu deportivo ocurre a través de los deportes. Cuando gana, cuando pierde, cuando está en el entrenamiento y cuando nadie mira son todos ejemplos de los momentos en que es importante mostrar el espíritu deportivo. Para ayudar a su atleta a entender qué es comportamiento aceptable del espíritu deportivo y qué no, dígale sobre las situaciones que pueden ocurrir, como el lenguaje vulgar y el empuje, y ayúdele a determinar cómo manejar la situación antes de que ocurra.
La siguiente tabla muestra algunos comportamientos aceptables y algunos inaceptables con respeto al espíritu deportivo.
 
En general, el desarrollo del espíritu deportivo en su hijo empieza con lo que ve que usted hace como padre. A veces puede ser difícil cuando el partido se hace frustrante, pero hay que tener el espíritu deportivo en dichas situaciones.


 What You Need to Know About E-Cigarettes and Vaping
(5/30/2019)
 
   

What You Need to Know About E-Cigarettes and Vaping




After decades of declines in tobacco use by teenagers, vaping and the use of e-cigarettes is surging in high schools and middle schools nationwide. According to a November 2018 advisory from the U.S. Surgeon General, e-cigarette use increased 78% among high school seniors and 48% among middle school students from 2017 to 2018.

As they have before, parents, teachers, and coaches must once again help kids understand the risks and learn to reject nicotine and tobacco.
 
The Appeal

Vaping eliminates several of the barriers that discouraged kids from sampling and getting hooked on nicotine. There’s no lighter, or hot, harsh smoke to inhale. A single pen-sized Juul, which has an estimated 75% of the market, is also easy to conceal and contains the nicotine content of a pack of 20 cigarettes. Maybe most importantly for teens, it’s hard to detect because the vapor doesn’t linger on the user’s clothes or breath. The industry is also making vaping more appealing to kids by focusing on fruity and dessert flavors.
 
E-Cigarette Risks for Teens

Vaping doesn’t look, smell, taste, or linger the way conventional tobacco products do, and the sleek and clean design gives a false impression that e-cigarettes are safe.
According to the U.S. Surgeon General, here are some of the reasons they are not.
Physical effects of nicotine:
Potent stimulant, increases blood pressure and heart rate, increases arterial stiffness.
Addictive:
Nicotine is physically addictive and young, developing minds are more susceptible to learning addictive behaviors.
Brain risks:
For the still-developing brain, nicotine can increase the likelihood for mood disorders, permanently reduce impulse control, and reduce cognitive abilities.
Greater tobacco and drug use:
There is no evidence to support the idea that e-cigarettes keep people from using burned or smokeless tobacco. While a small number of tobacco users have used e-cigarettes to quit smoking, far more new e-cigarette users subsequently start using conventional tobacco products.
 

E-Cigarettes and Sport 


Nicotine is a powerful stimulant with a long association with sport, particularly baseball. However, according to a 2017 review study, athletes in football, ice hockey, wrestling, gymnastics, and skiing are increasingly using it as well. While appealing to many athletes, the ergogenic effect may be overestimated. It is also important for coaches and parents to know athletes reported using nicotine for alertness, weight loss, and preventing dry mouth.
 
What You Need to Know About E-Cigarettes and Vaping 

Though the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced plans to restrict flavored e-cigarette products, they are currently easy to get. In the meantime, the Surgeon General and Centers for Disease Control recommend a number of ways parents, coaches, and healthcare providers can help address the problem, including the following.
Be a good example:
Quit personal tobacco use and establish tobacco-free rules for your home or sports facility.
Initiate the conversation:
Instead of waiting until a young athlete brings it up, use cues, like a person vaping nearby, to bring up the topic more naturally.
Learn so you can educate:
Learn what e-cigarettes look like and how they work, as well as the health risks of nicotine. Nearly two-thirds of Juul users age 14-24 do not know Juul always contains nicotine.
Repeat the message:
Just like practicing new sport skills, saying it once isn’t going to do it. Find new ways to communicate the message, like using a team approach and including conversations with a doctor, coaches, teachers, and athlete role models.

The good news is that even with the dramatic increase in vaping, four out of five high school students are NOT doing it. Nationwide efforts to reduce tobacco use have worked in the past. Parents, coaches, and teachers played a big role in those successes, and can do the same again.
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.


 Productos de nutrición deportiva
(5/29/2019)
 
   

Productos de nutrición deportiva


USA Baseball


ESTRATEGIA DE ALIMENTO PRIMERO 

Los atletas deben adoptar una estrategia de "alimento primero" para satisfacer sus necesidades nutricionales y energéticas a lo largo del día. Los productos de nutrición deportiva como las bebidas deportivas, barras y geles se han diseñado para complementar el programa nutricional de un atleta antes, durante y después de la actividad atlética y no como repuesto o sustituto para reemplazar los alimentos reales.

ELECCIÓN DE PRODUCTOS 

Existen muchos productos de nutrición deportiva en el mercado, y puede ser difícil tomar buenas decisiones nutricionales para cumplir con los objetivos de desarrollo físico, capacitación y rendimiento de un atleta. A continuación se encuentra una descripción de los tres principales productos de nutrición deportiva:

Bebidas Isotónicas

Las bebidas isotónicas son bebidas aromatizadas que contienen principalmente carbohidratos y electrolitos y, por lo general, se consumen antes, durante y después de las sesiones de entrenamiento. Las bebidas deportivas ayudarán a mantener la hidratación y el reemplazo de carbohidratos para un rendimiento óptimo antes, durante y después del entrenamiento.
Barras Energéticas
Las barras energéticas se diseñan para proporcionar a los atletas una fuente compacta de calorías, carbohidratos y proteínas antes, durante o después de las sesiones de entrenamiento. Aunque el tamaño y la composición de estas barras energéticas varían, por lo general es mejor consumir una que contenga 30-100 gramos de carbohidratos y 6-20 gramos de proteínas.

Geles Energético

Los geles energéticos son formas semisólidas de carbohidratos principalmente que ayudan a mantener los niveles de azúcar en la sangre durante el entrenamiento y la competición. La mayoría de los geles energéticos contienen al menos 20 gramos de carbohidratos, y algunos contienen vitaminas y minerales. Si se usan durante el ejercicio, los atletas deben consumir 1-2 geles por hora con 4-8 onzas de agua.

Debido a que la industria de productos de nutrición deportiva no está sujeta a estrictas regulaciones gubernamentales, algunos productos pueden estar mal etiquetados o contaminados con sustancias prohibidas o aditivos que no figuran como un ingrediente en la etiqueta. Los únicos productos de nutrición deportiva que los atletas pueden usar sin el riesgo de contaminación son aquellos productos que han sido certificados bajo el programa Certified for Sport de la NSF. Una lista actual de productos aprobados por la NSF está disponible en: www.NSFsport.com. Los atletas deben consultar con un dietista deportivo calificado para obtener más información sobre cómo elegir productos y desarrollar un protocolo de nutrición.

Cortesía del Comité Olímpico de los Estados Unidos y las Grandes Ligas

 

 Misplayed Double Play Opportunity
(5/27/2019)
 
   

Misplayed Double Play Opportunity


Monday Manager
By Tom Succow


In this edition of Monday Manager, four-time USA Baseball coaching alum Tom Succow discusses the elements of a botched double play opportunity, and while its crucial to at least record one out. 


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.


 Los Básicos Fundamentales de Aguantar al Corredor
(5/23/2019)
 
   

Los Básicos Fundamentales de Aguantar al Corredor


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.

 

 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.