27
Jan

Bus Image[Wintality] – win-tal-i-ty – noun; The act of mentally lifting your teammates up when they are down. “Her wintality just wouldn’t let me give up.”

When learning the mental side of this game, one of the easiest ways to explain something new is to explain what it isn’t. More often than not, the opposite is what 99% of the world is accustomed to seeing, so drawing on that knowledge helps. So here goes … Wintality is the total opposite of  the “look.” Not the negative talk, self inflicted “look” that I discussed in Wintality: 101. I’m talking about the “look” from one player to another that says “You just cost us our entire future.” The look that then translates into 5 more errors in the same inning, and hurt feelings that sometimes last a lifetime.

Wintality is a pat on the back, words of encouragement that render “I’ve seen you field a million of those in practice I know there’s nobody out here that works harder than you. I’ve never seen you miss 2 in a row so it’s all good you got this next one. Instead of a look with lasers, it’s the look that says “We practice together. We play together. And by golly even when we make errors we are going to stick together.”

In its rarest form wintality is one of the most contagious diseases on earth, yet also one of the rarest. I’m talking about wintality which manifests itself through ThrowYourselfUnderTheBusItis. (You may need to read that a few times.) This game is played on a field, and what happens on the diamond should stay on the diamond. But often times the on the field “look” translates into throwing someone “under the bus” as soon as the team leaves the field. Yet nobody can figure out why the team can’t win the tough games.

ThrowYourselfUnderTheBusItis is the strand of wintality that steps up and takes ownership of the problems and takes the eyes, stares and yapping off of the other player. Instead of “I’m sick of her not getting to those” it’s “I lost my focus and missed my location. I need to step up MY game. Hey before next game make me throw like a million outside curve balls in a row” Instead of “I’m so sick of her attitude. If she doesn’t want to play ball why doesn’t she just quit already?” Wintality involves “She’s my teammate. I know she loves this game, I wonder what I can do this week to reach out to her and find out what is going on off the field that she might be bringing onto the field.” It’s an attitude of “Hey driver, my teammate is injured right now (mentally), you want to run that bus over someone, then run it over me.”

Wintality like that requires a major commitment up front. It takes the belief that your teammates are worth that kind of effort. It takes the understanding that while you had no choice in choosing your teammates, you do have a choice in how you treat them. It takes the realization that in the long term their one physical/mental error meant nothing, but your response could carry through the rest of the entire season and set the tone for a lifetime.

Whether you are a player, a parent or a coach be honest with yourself. Do you give the “look.” Do you pile onto the bus when others are driving it?” Do you drive the bus? It’s not easy, that’s why it’s so rare, but what can you do today or this week to start spreading wintality?

Category : Leadership | Mental advice
27
Jan

Taryne Mowatt

I first read the word “WINTALITY” in January 2011 on the Auburn Lady Tigers Facebook page, and I’ve got to say I immediately fell in love with it. There are a million catch phrases out there, many cliché’s but seldom does one get to experience the sheer pleasure that comes from hearing a brand new word. A word that has meaning only to the reader or listener. A meaning that can be neither right nor wrong. For the next several weeks I’m going to have a blast making up an entirely new definition of the word so that it fits what I want it to, hey I’m the one typing so I’m allowed, and sharing it with you. I look forward to reading your comments to see what the word may have meant to you as you first read it.

[Wintality] – win-tal-i-ty – noun; The act of mentally believing you have already won even before the game begins or has concluded. “I’ve never seen anything quite like that girl’s wintality.”

Making up a definition for a new word is the easy part. Conveying it to others in a way that will help motivate and inspire them is something else entirely. Because nearly any kind of learning is best accomplished when relating it to something you already know. With this word that is rather hard to do, because unfortunately most players, coaches and parents are familiar only with its 3 polar opposites – negativity, pessimism and selfishness. You know what I mean a hard fought game that is tied in the bottom of the 5’th inning and a physical error is made somewhere on the field and the player slaps herself on the leg, her head hangs low and you instantly see that she believes she’s already lost the game. On bad teams that one look generally translates into 10 other errors in the same inning. On the best of teams her teammates try to pick her up, but the very fact that they have to try and pick her up, distracts them from what they should be thinking about.

Fortunately for me I got to witness “wintality” long before I ever had the pleasure of hearing the word. At the time I just watched a player demonstrate it and thought “there is something different about this girl.” This girl, being Taryne Mowatt of the University of Arizona. In June 2007 I watched as she battled the University of Tennessee for the Women’s College World Series Championship. Repeatedly the Lady Volunteers managed to load the bases and what I expected to see was “the look” described above. But no, that’s not what I saw. That’s not what America saw. That’s not what the world saw. What we all saw instead was a smile. Wait, or was that a grin. A giggle perhaps? The look that constantly came across her face in those situations implied “I let you do that on purpose because you can’t possibly beat me. I’ve already seen the score at the end of the game. The score’s at the end of the series. And I’ve already won.”

Taryne Mowatt doesn’t have ESP. She couldn’t really see the score at the end of the game. She couldn’t really know the series was going to go to Arizona. What she had, and still has is wintality. The ability to believe in her mind that she is going to win, and has already won before she takes the field and regardless of the situation on the field. The important question isn’t whether you’ve seen Taryne’s wintality or witnessed it in others. The important question is “Do you have WINTALITY?”

Category : Mental advice
27
Jan

Lander Field

If a picture is worth a thousand words then a gorgeous photo of a ball field being kissed by the sky is certainly worthy of several posts. Fastpitch.TV was generous enough to allow me to do a series of blog posts about different aspects of this photo. The story unfolds best if you read the posts in order.

EXCELLENCE: Requires Sacrifice

EXCELLENCE: Requires Recognition

EXCELLENCE: Requires Relationships

EXCELLENCE: Requires Absolutely Nothing

Category : Coaching | Leadership | Mental advice
18
Jan

No I’m not talking about picking your nose.

I’m talking about what you do when you are alone that is going to help you win that championship game that isn’t for 6 months from now. You know the one I’m talking about. You will be stepping into the limelight.  The fans will all be cheering. Your teammates will be encouraging you. Your coaches will be advising.

That championship game.

We all want to be there.

We all want to come through in the clutch in that situation.

So I’ll ask the question again … What do you do when you are alone that is preparing you to deliver in that situation?

Are you jogging on your own? Are you lifting weights to build your strength? Are you doing speed and agility drills to increase your explosiveness?

Are you only hitting with your team or are you taking 100 swings per day on your own?

Are you waiting for something magic to happen at one of your team practices that will increase your endurance or are you doing a lot of cardio work on your own?

Are you hoping your coach provides a magic energy pill or are you following a solid nutritional plan that will help you after a long fought weekend or will your body let you down like it did this past year?

I gotta tell you one thing I’m really good at is math. And girl have I got news for you. There are so many more days/hours/minutes when you are alone than when you are on the field for practice. If you REALLY want to win that game that is just 6 short months away … you need to be using those days/hours/minutes when you are alone to your advantage. Commit yourself to the fact that what you do before the game while you are alone is going to be what helps you win that game when you are with your team. Commit yourself to doing the kind of things that other players just wouldn’t be willing to do. Then you will go into that championship game, step up to the plate with the game on the line knowing that your work is what you got you there and then deliver.
 

Category : Mental advice | Training
14
Jan

As the season rapidly approaches you need to be in the best shape of your life.

P90X …. that’s old news.

Insanity … child’s play.

Cross Fit … boring.

In this 4 minute video Coach Dalton will help you get the MOST IMPORTANT MUSCLE in your body into shape and have you ready to seriously light it up this season.

 

Category : Training
24
Feb

It may just be a rumor at this point, but I just heard that we are in the 21’st century and that any good website provides a discussion forum so that followers can contribute ideas ask questions and learn from others. Can that be true?

If the rumor is true then I would hate for Cross Training to be the last site in the world to provide this interactive capability so I’ve added a new Discussion Forum page. Seriously! It’s right there at the far right of on your menu bar and you can even upload your own avatar for the discussions. I know right that’s only been around for 10 years and I already have it here now. Check it out.

All kidding aside I sincerely hope that the new forum will provide more interaction between those around the world and myself.

Category : Uncategorized
21
Feb

My students.

The heart my students have for this game.

The willingness of my students to do whatever it takes to become champions on and off the field.

Take Lauren and Kady for example, the two young ladies in this intro video. Both are great young players. Both could be comfortable kicking other players butts in the age group they are at. But they are both committed to kicking players butts when they are 22 (10 and 11 years from now.)

Not only are they willing to do what it takes to themselves become champions they are willing to do whatever it takes to help me shoot videos so that others can learn and improve. Oh they could just keep what I teach them a secret, but then who would they compete against? They both want to be driven by their competition to continue on the path of learning. To continue on the path of playing the best and rising above them. We’ve wanted to shoot these videos for a long time, but the weather here in hot-lanta GA just hasn’t cooperated. We finally had a break in the clouds long enough for them and their parents to zip straight from school, change in the car so that we could shoot the upcoming episodes that will be released via Fastpitch Illustrated Magazine. If you aren’t already a subscriber the link is just a few inches on your right.

So how do I accomplish what is needed each month to produce an article and great video training to go along with it? My students.

 

 

 

 

Category : Uncategorized