The Games Approach to Teaching Baseball. Tom O Connell International Sports Group

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1 The Games Approach to Teaching Baseball Tom O Connell International Sports Group

2 Traditional Baseball Practice Warm up Teaching of a basic or advanced skill Repeated practice of this skill through one or more drills BP Practice Game; scrimmage Also, some physical training

3 Shortcomings of Traditional Approach Overemphasis on technical skills.at the expense of decision-making skills Overemphasis on direct instruction; command style teaching Mindless drills out of context of the game; these skills are hard to apply to game skills Example: BP 20 swings/5 swings Risk of Boredom

4 What are tactics? A tactic is a plan used to gain advantage in a contest A strategy is a season plan of action

5 The Tactical Triangle Tactical skills include: decisions players make to use various technical skills in certain situations; plays they use; where they position themselves. Read Decision- Making Apply Knowledge

6 Applying the Tactical Triangle A crucial baseball situation: a runner at third base with less than two outs. He s only 90 feet away from home plate and from scoring a run. He knows that mistakes should not be made on this part of the diamond. So before each pitch he must mentally cover the bases of the triangle: first, read the play; second, review the information gathered in step 1 to help him make a sound decision; and third, make the decision to move forward or go back. Doing this develops.game Sense

7 So.AN ALTERNATIVE.. There is a different way to teach the game one that allows players to learn the game through game-like practices that create realistic and enjoyable learning activities and allow players to develop Game Sense This is

8 The Games Approach To become an effective performer in a baseball game, a player need perfect practice under conditions as similar as possible to the environment in which the new learning will be applied. Game speed Game conditions

9 The Games Approach Is Athlete centered Gives ownership for improvement to the player Is Holistic

10 The 3 Elements of the Games Approach SHAPING FOCUSING ENHANCING

11 How can a coach practice? Change rules Change # of players Change size of the field Modify the goal of the game and scoring Modify the equipment KEY: Redesign the Game!

12 How can a coach play? Explaining Stop Play and correct Use Questioning Method Freeze Replay

13 How can a coach play? Present Challenges Handicap the drill helps keep results competitive

14 How to Make It Work for You Begin practice with a game Redesign drills to make them more game-like Try freeze replays and let the players come up with the answers Design drills to help players grasp tactical principles

15 Sample GA Drills The Bunt Game Divide team in half 4 infielders, catcher, pitcher on one team Other team bats No strikeouts, no walks, no steals Pitchers must throw fast balls Infielders must stay on dirt until ball hits home plate

16 Sample GA drills Bingo, Bango, Bongo BP with a twist Baserunner at first to start Hit and run Sacrifice Suicide Hits Drag Bunt/Run

17 Sample GA drills 21 Outs 9 players in field Rest of players bat Change players occasionally No walks, no steals Pitchers can only throw fast ball/changeup Clear bases after 3 outs Use stop watch; time for 21 outs No bunting

18 Sample GA drills Outfield Minus One Divide team in half Place cones approximately 4 metres left of 2 nd base and in outfield Batters can t hit to left field; only RF or CF Pitchers can only throw fastballs/changeups Award points instead of runs

19 Sample GA drills PFP 2 Need pitcher/1b/2b/c/3b Runner on 2 nd Hit fungoes to 1B or P just like regular PFP If ball hit to P, C can call base TWIST: Put batter in box; toss hit instead of fungoes

20 Sample GA drills Long Pepper Three outfielders, pitcher (machine), hitter, catcher Outfielders stationed straight-away 55 meters away (deeper if more challenge wanted) Batter gets 25 points each trip to plate Hard ground ball one point; chopper three points; Fly ball at fielders 10 points; (scoring can be anyway you want it) Emphasize hitting at target and hitting hard

21 Sample GA drills First Third Challenge Full infield All others are runners Practice all double steal defenses and offenses Offense gets 1 point for each run scored Defense gets 2 points for each out Play to 10

22 Sample GA drills Long Tee Need hitters paired; each one has a tee Each tee hitter has a partner with glove Tees 50m apart Use cones to define an area Players hit to other tee Forces concentration and keeping hands in zone Devise point system

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