There has been a lot of books and research that have come out in terms of developing expertise. These include:
* Malcolm Gladwell's "Outliers
", highlighting the importance of 10,000 hours of practice to become an expert.
* Dan Coyle's "The Talent Code: Greatness Isn't Born. It's Grown. Here's How
," which highlights the importance of 1) "deep practice", 2) Ignition, and 3) Master Coaching/feedback.
* Harvard's Anders Ericsson's "The Cambridge Handbook of Expertise and Expert Performance
", which is the seminal research tome that started it all.
One key take away from all of these books, from the perspective of a youth baseball coach, is that baseball is simply a vehicle to teach kids skills, habits, and the effort necessary to be successful (or an expert) in any field. These books have also gone a long way to dispel the myth of being born with talent. The key is to practice with purpose, which includes a specific goal in mind, at full effort, with feedback that allows you improve your process.
This is one of the reasons that one of our favorite baseball quotes comes from Ted Williams, whom many still consider the greatest "natural" hitter of all-time. His quote is "the natural hitter has worked longer and harder than any player out on the field."
The other quote comes from legendary USC Baseball Coach, Rod Dedeaux - "Most players never reach their potential because a lack of quality instruction rather than a lack of ability."
As a coach, you have a very important job that can literally be a life-changing experience for a kid. LJYB as an organization spends a lot of time trying to get the best individuals we can to handle this big responsibility.
Key Points to Remember
* emphasize effort over achievement, process over product
* praise in public, scold or correct in private