Coaches Corner - Switch Up How You Think About Practice
Tired of the same practice routine? Take a minute and read one example of a practice Bree Nasti, Head Softball Coach at Adelphi University has created to help her players practice efficiently and deliberately.
“A few years ago, while coaching high school softball in California, I consulted with an expert in the field of sports psychology whom I was studying under and working with at Fresno State. Together, we discussed some of the challenges and nuances of softball, and, more specifically, the team I was working with at the time.
We designed a practice that was broken down into innings, with offensive and defensive tasks alternating much like they do in competition. Each half of each inning had an objective and an activity was designed for each objective. A point system was designed to reward our team for executing specific tasks we felt were relevant to our success in competition. Failure to execute resulted in points for the opponent, an imaginary team we were competing against. After each inning was complete, we were winning, losing, or tied. Practice ended when we finished our seven innings, and we either won or lost our game.
As always in a softball game, the possibility was there for extra innings. With this type of practice, individual activities were based in deliberate practice, and the design as a whole closely represented the nature of a softball game. Players knew when practice would begin, but not when it would end. This is one example of how we tried to integrate what we knew about effective coaching and deliberate practice into our practice habits, many of which had become routine.”
For more great tips and instruction from Coach Nasti, check out her Nike Softball Camp at Adelphi University. With two weeks of day camp for ages 8-18 of all abilities.
About US Sports Camps
US Sports Camps (USSC), headquartered in San Rafael, California, is America's largest sports camp network and the licensed operator of Nike Sports Camps. The company has offered summer camps since 1975 with the same mission that defines it today: to shape a lifelong enjoyment of athletics through high quality sports education and skill enhancement.