Concord Baseball Player Shines in this Sportlight

Yes, that says "sportlight", and yes, it was on purpose 🙂

After speaking with Kyle Hill’s dad, Tom, as well as speaking with Kyle, I decided this was a great subject for my next spotlight. Kyle was a part of my Athlete Academy program for several months before starting to play on several baseball teams this spring. Over those several months I saw major improvements in Kyle in just about every facet. He got stronger, he got more flexible, and in turn his play got better. Below is some information from Kyle himself about his experience in Athlete Academy.

“I originally started Athlete Academy to get stronger and to become a better player in general. Before starting I did not have much prior knowledge on how to correctly work out and gain strength.

I pitch, play center field, and also play shortstop for Concord High Baseball. I've played baseball since before first grade and played on numerous levels from Babe Ruth up to Concord Cannons. Since doing Athlete Academy, I have noticed a major difference in my performance on the field. My bat speed has improved greatly, making it easier to hit faster pitching, I have become a faster runner on the base paths, and there is also a difference in velocity while pitching.

These improvements are all thanks to Athlete Academy and I would have never gotten better in this way without it. The best part of Athlete Academy is having a coach like Coach Adam there to push you and make you get better and also having the other athletes there to support you as well.”

I am extremely proud of Kyle for taking the steps to get him to the enormous potential he possesses. Great job, Kyle! Can’t wait to get out and see some games this spring!

-Coach Adam

Athlete Academy: Don’t Over Specialize – Burning Out

In my last blog, I wrote about some of the dangers of overspecializing from a mechanical standpoint, like why it may actually hinder rather than help a child’s ability in a given sport. As a quick reminder, when I talk about over specializing, I mean having a young athlete do one sport, and only one sport, year round without ever being introduced to different movements or events.

Today I want to talk about the mental aspect, which is the high burnout factor that over specializing can lead to. You may not feel this way about everything, but as human beings we need change because change leads to growth. That growth can be physical or mental. When a child is put in the same sport, doing the same movements over and over and over again, without being exposed to something else, eventually that child will most likely become disinterested in the sport. Often times, they will quit entirely because they get sick of it.

Imagine you are fed nothing but chicken and rice every day, for every meal your entire childhood. What are you going to do the SECOND that you are given the option to stop eating it? You may never eat it again. Same thing can happen with kids and sports. Not only will they become sick of it, but even if they do keep playing they will never reach their full potential. Disinterest breeds disengagement, and a disengaged player will never reach their full potential.

Lastly, it boils down to the pressure associated with overspecializing. Imagine you have been pushed to play a particular sport your entire life. In season you’re hyper focused, in your off season you are bouncing between 2-3 rec or travel teams, and you spend 8 weeks of your 10 week summer vacation at camps dedicated to the same thing. Now what happens when that kid goes to high-school, has to make a team for the first time but doesn’t make it? That kid is likely to: A) feel like they let everyone down, or B) stop moving entirely because they have nothing else to fall back on.

Don’t create more burnout. There are already hundreds of thousands of adults my age who don’t move anymore because it got so stressful and so frustrating that it wasn’t worth it anymore and they stopped entirely. Don’t add to that statistic.

-Coach Adam