We can enjoy sports activities in moderation, and need to be intentional about teaching our youth about the game but more importantly about life. Below is a letter I hand out to the parents of my baseball boys. My belief is that sports activities bring us together to create lasting relationships and strengthen our families. If they are not doing that then our priorities are all wrong in why we are participating. These activities are “part” of our life, not our life!
Smash Brothers Team Philosophy
To the parents:
This letter will explain my coaching philosophy. I love to coach baseball and have a deep love for the game. My plan is to teach your son the game. I will make mistakes. You will not agree with every decision that is made about where your son plays or where your son bats in the lineup. I know you only want the best for your son. So do we as coaches. I will seek to always be a positive influence on them and build them up as young men. I will also instruct them as needed.
The Smash Brothers team is about the boys not the parents. It is not about mom and dad. It is not about us as parents living our dreams through our children. These boys will have enough pressure on them from their coaches and don’t need more pressure from mom and dad during practices and games. Practices will be over when they are over. Let us coach them. It is important to tell them good job. Remember we are learning the game of baseball and even the pros make mistakes. This is about more than baseball or wins and losses. This is about the development of your son.
There are three main areas that we will focus on with the boys. These are fundamental for success.
Hard work pays off - They will be expected to hustle on and off the field. They will be asked to give their best in all situations. They will need to work hard because hard work pays off. Good things in life take hard work. Learning baseball is no different, it requires hard work and commitment. Boys that do not hustle or work hard will not get much playing time.
Respect for others - The boys will be expected to have respect towards coaches, umpires, teammates, and opposing teams. We will be a team that has a good attitude towards all people. We as coaches will be held to the same standard. We also ask you as parents to hold yourself to this same standard as we represent Clinton and the Smash Brothers.
Values in life - As many of you may be aware I am a man convicted by my faith. I value that deeply in life. I am not looking to force that on anyone else, but this is why we huddle up after practices and games to pray. Prayer is a value all young men should learn. I seek to teach leadership and positive outlooks even when we don’t come out on top, and there will be days when we do not come out on top. This is life. We will play baseball (a lot of it) but there is more to learn than how to hit, catch, and throw a ball. I, as the Smash Brothers head coach, want to instill in these young men values that will help them the rest of their life.
Forrest Smith is Minister at Clinton Church of Christ