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Building character, courage, and loyalty since 1956

Southeast Portland Little League

Positive Coaching

Since 2006, Little League has partnered with Positive Coaching Alliance to provide a framework and tools for local Little League volunteers to develop a culture of positive, character-building competition. Recently, Little League extended this partnership to include relevant information for the Little League Coach and the Little League Parent, with the addition of two FREE quick-courses. These quick-courses provide a framework to develop a positive coach-parent partnership and to be a powerful sports parent from the stands. 

Here's a little bit about PCA's philosophy from the perspective of SEPLL. The PCA emphasizes focusing on mastery of the game -- something over we have some control -- rather than winning -- which is often out of our control.

We all like to win. SEPLL hopes that every team will win its share of games this year. But none of us have any idea how competitive your team will be. At times your team may struggle to win games. That’s okay! You and your team’s focus should be on mastery of the skills of the game, not winning or losing.

Why mastery? It is something we as individuals have some control. Your teams's primary goal is for everyone to give their best effort at all times. Not only is it okay to make mistakes, we expect everyone to make them. You should even want to see mistakes. It’s a sign that your players are challenging themselves. People who don’t make mistakes aren’t growing. (Of course you know all that but your players may not and it's often hard for adults to remember.)

On the other hand, winning is often out of an individual’s control. Your players don’t get to choose their natural abilities, their teammates, their coaches, the umpires, their opponents or the weather. While hard work is an important part of winning, it often isn’t enough. Sometimes you and your players may do everything right and still lose. Other days you and your team may make a lot of mistakes and still win. It doesn’t always make sense. The important thing is for you and your players to work hard and try their best. Please help drive this point home with your players.  

Also keep in mind that baseball is a sport of failure. The best players in the major leagues only get a hit about 30% of the time. Babe Ruth, perhaps baseball’s best ever, struck out nearly twice for every home run he hit (1330/714). Cy Young, who holds the record for most career wins at 511, lost nearly 40% of his games and holds the record for most career losses at 316. Nolan Ryan, who’s in the Hall of Fame and known for his 7 no hitters, won only 52.6% of his decisions. Just like baseball’s greats, our hitters will strike out, our pitchers will walk batters, and our fielders will boot ground balls. When that happens, help your players shake it off and move on to the next play.

We hope that all of coaches, players and families will embrace the PCA philosophy. Click here to learn more about Positive Coaching and how to use positivity to achieve great outcomes for your players!

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Southeast Portland Little League

P.O. Box 42154 
Portland, Oregon 97242

Email Us: [email protected]
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