January 2012-Tip of the Month

"Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast"

(Special thanks to Michael N from Boise, ID for the quote)

As we inch closer to the beginning of everyone's Spring seasons I wanted to make January's Tip of the Month about something that we can do to fast track our ability to develop consistent and correct mechanics during our practice sessions.

Ever so often, students of mine will walk into a cage with me ready to fire on all cylinders. However, it may be that very fact which prevents the type of progress each of them desires. Something I continue to stress to all of my students is that in order to build enough muscle memory to execute a skill properly at game speed, you first must spend enough time going through the drill slowly. Too often I will see a student feel "it" once and on the very next rep they increase the rate of the drill. Most of the time the mechanics break down, as the student has not spent enough time executing the drill correctly.

Many coaches put an emphasis on the amount of focused effort during a drill, and rightfully so. But, we very often forget that the speed in which a drill is completed is just as important as the purpose for doing it.

If we cannot complete a drill correctly at 20-percent, how can we expect to have success doing it at full speed in a game? As catchers, playing a position with so many variables connected to the mechanics we use during games, we need to be extremely meticulous in our preparation for the season.

If you aren't getting the results you desire in a training environment....slow down! You may just find that by doing it slow, the mechanics you are attempting to build will become smooth, and lets not forget that smooth is indeed fast.

Thanks for reading!

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From behind the mask,