Head Coach v Specialty Coach

So you’ve made the team and you start practicing, but your head coach doesn’t like something you do with either your pitching or hitting. If you already go to a trained specialty coach then you may have a conflict of interest and some disagreements. Confusing the player is counterproductive and you will hinder progress and actually make things worse. As a player or parent you can handle it a few ways.

Tell your coach

Most coaches will ask at the start of the season who goes to pitching or hitting lessons and they may want to know who it is. That’s a great start, but some coaches will leave you alone and others will try to tweak. Make sure they know you get extra coaching on the side.

Explain yourself

You should be able to explain to your coach why are doing things a certain way. If your coach doesn’t like way you are stepping or using your hips, you should be able to explain it. For example: I tell my players to exaggerate movements on the tee and front toss drills so that these subtle movements become second nature when it’s time to go live.

Be polite

Yes sir, Yes ma’am, but ignore (but not always). Some coaches are jack of all trades but master of none. They may have passed down knowledge that they heard over the years “squish the bug”, “hello elbow”, “nice level swing”, or some other phrase that is repeated that can’t be explained properly. If a coach does point something out that you hear from your specialty coach then of course make that adjustment.

Have the coaches talk

This doesn’t have to be a cold war summit, so egos should be set aside. You both want the players to get better and confusing them with different drills that undo progress is detrimental to player development. It’s important to pick and trust a process. There are many different coaching styles and methods, but there should be common ground when it comes to doing what is best for the player.

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