Overreaction Central

Found an interesting blog with several good posts.

http://www.coachisright.blogspot.com/

Protecting Our Young Athletes

“Should bunting be banned” is the common title of many blogs and news reports following the tragic accident in Winslow, Arizona.
(CBS/AP)  PHOENIX – A 13-year-old Arizona boy was killed in a freak accident after a baseball hit him over the heart as he tried to bunt, officials in his Little League said Friday. CBSSports.com reports that Hayden Walton went for the bunt during a game Tuesday night in the close-knit northern Arizona city of Winslow, said Jamey Jones, a Winslow Little League official. “He took an inside pitch right in the chest,” Jones said. “After that he took two steps to first base and collapsed.” He died the next morning at a local hospital.
Read more: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/06/04/sportsline/main20068965.shtml#ixzz1ORfSJtb1
I responded to this incident on the CBS site and actually more so in response to many of the comments that were made on this site.
Should we make a law requiring chest protection?  Why doesn’t Little League do more? What about other sports, isn’t golf and tennis safer?  ON and on and on.
One comment sites a blog that isn’t even available claiming 63 deaths by kids participating in Little League play.  Assuming that is correct let’s put this in a bigger picture.  Little League Baseball and Softball has a few MILLION kids participating in its leagues every year.  According to the Little League media guide, there are 45,000 (that’s THOUSAND) games leading up the the various world series championships each year.  And yet only 63 children have died (directly or indirectly) over their history (not just a single year) because of participating in these contests.
I think I would rather have my kids playing Little League baseball or softball than say, flying, riding a bike, riding or driving in a car on the freeway, skiing, skateboarding, etc., etc, etc.
Another comment points to Baylor University’s catcher, Clare Hosack, who took a foul ball to the face (she was not bunting as one commenter said).  She broke a few bones but had no concussion and was back behind the plate for the College World Series games two weeks later.  Furthermore, this amazing young lady CHOSE not to wear a helmet with a face mask which is allowed per NCAA rules.  Likewise, major league baseball players do not wear masks either and they are consistently facing pitches of 90 miles per hour and above.
And for you tennis and golf fans out there….in tennis the service of a professional player can reach 150 miles per hour.  Yet while I could not find an article about deaths from contact with a tennis ball (other than a bird), here is an interesting article about deaths of young athletes, including tennis players, from heart issues.  In golf, maybe there’s a reason for a lack of deaths, like, that you are (or should be) hundreds of feet, if not yards, from the person hitting the ball.
I could go on and on about the risks of sports, the safety of sports, the protections provided by certain equipment in sports, etc.  But there is a bigger issue here that is constantly in the forefront and that is how far we should go in protecting our kids playing sports.  I won’t even go into the adult side.  I was hit a number of times when I used to play slow pitch softball.  No, not by the pitch…I did move a little faster than that.  But I was a pitcher and was hit by batted balls on four different occasions.  Once I was hit by a line drive just above the heart.  I went to the hospital to have it checked out.  The doctor said that if I had been hit two inches lower it may have bruised my heart and I could have had more serious issues.  I still kept playing; at least for a few more years.
Parents constantly want their son or daughter to be the center of attention; to be on the best team; to be the star; etc., etc., etc.  We want it all.  We want that scholarship.  We want to be pro.  We want, we want, we want.  But when our little Johnny or DD gets hurt we want to blame somebody.  We want paid.  (I am not saying that this is the attitude of Hayden Walton’s parents, I am saying this as a general comment).  There was a lawsuit in New York by a player who broke her foot while sliding into a base at  a high school softball game.  She said she wasn’t trained properly.  I want to know how a player who had been playing since she was 7 years old could 1) never learn how to slide and 2) make her high school team not knowing how to slide.  I’m sorry moms and dads but we cannot protect our children from everything.  Maybe you can choose to NOT let them participate in anything, then they can sit on the couch watching tv all the time and die at 40 years old weighing 650 pounds and not being able to get out of the chair.
One of the comments on the CBS site asked why there wasn’t a law requiring chest protection.  Well, first, I don’t want a law requiring something to try to protect everything.  We have too many laws anyhow.  We shouldn’t need laws to tell us to do something we feel needs to be done.  If you feel your child should have a face mask, a mouth guard, etc., then buy it and put it on them.  If you choose not to do that then shut up.  Second, I simply have to point at one example that is indicative of our attitudes about many things, not just youth sports.  How many of you, especially if you live in California, are still texting while driving?  Enough said?
I pray that God will provide some comfort to Hayden’s family in this difficult time.  It is a tragedy that every parents hopes they will never have to endure.  My daughter was a softball pitcher and I can assure you that there were times that I worried about her safety standing 40 feet away from a kid with a stick trying to hit the ball she just threw.  But we have two choices when it comes to sports; when it comes to life:
Participate to the fullest or take your ball and go home. 

Protecting Our Young Athletes

“Should bunting be banned” is the common title of many blogs and news reports following the tragic accident in Winslow, Arizona.
(CBS/AP) 
PHOENIX – A 13-year-old Arizona boy was killed in a freak accident after a baseball hit him over the heart as he tried to bunt, officials in his Little League said Friday.
CBSSports.com reports that Hayden Walton went for the bunt during a game Tuesday night in the close-knit northern Arizona city of Winslow, said Jamey Jones, a Winslow Little League official.
“He took an inside pitch right in the chest,” Jones said. “After that he took two steps to first base and collapsed.”
He died the next morning at a local hospital.
I responded to this incident on the CBS site and actually more so in response to many of the comments that were made on this site. 
Should we make a law requiring chest protection?  Why doesn’t Little League do more? What about other sports, isn’t golf and tennis safer?  ON and on and on. 
One comment sites a blog that isn’t even available claiming 63 deaths by kids participating in Little League play.  Assuming that is correct let’s put this in a bigger picture.  Little League Baseball and Softball has a few MILLION kids participating in its leagues every year.  According to the Little League media guide, there are 45,000 (that’s THOUSAND) games leading up the the various world series championships each year.  And yet only 63 children have died (directly or indirectly) over their history (not just a single year) because of participating in these contests.
I think I would rather have my kids playing Little League baseball or softball than say, flying, riding a bike, riding or driving in a car on the freeway, skiing, skateboarding, etc., etc, etc.
Another comment points to Baylor University’s catcher, Clare Hosack, who took a foul ball to the face (she was not bunting as one commenter said).  She broke a few bones but had no concussion and was back behind the plate for the College World Series games two weeks later.  Furthermore, this amazing young lady CHOSE not to wear a helmet with a face mask which is allowed per NCAA rules.  Likewise, major league baseball players do not wear masks either and they are consistently facing pitches of 90 miles per hour and above.
And for you tennis and golf fans out there….in tennis the service of a professional player can reach 150 miles per hour.  Yet while I could not find an article about deaths from contact with a tennis ball (other than a bird), here is an interesting article about deaths of young athletes, including tennis players, from heart issues.  In golf, maybe there’s a reason for a lack of deaths, like, that you are (or should be) hundreds of feet, if not yards, from the person hitting the ball.
I could go on and on about the risks of sports, the safety of sports, the protections provided by certain equipment in sports, etc.  But there is a bigger issue here that is constantly in the forefront and that is how far we should go in protecting our kids playing sports.  I won’t even go into the adult side.  I was hit a number of times when I used to play slow pitch softball.  No, not by the pitch…I did move a little faster than that.  But I was a pitcher and was hit by batted balls on four different occasions.  Once I was hit by a line drive just above the heart.  I went to the hospital to have it checked out.  The doctor said that if I had been hit two inches lower it may have bruised my heart and I could have had more serious issues.  I still kept playing; at least for a few more years.
Parents constantly want their son or daughter to be the center of attention; to be on the best team; to be the star; etc., etc., etc.  We want it all.  We want that scholarship.  We want to be pro.  We want, we want, we want.  But when our little Johnny or DD gets hurt we want to blame somebody.  We want paid.  (I am not saying that this is the attitude of Hayden Walton’s parents, I am saying this as a general comment).  There was a lawsuit in New York by a player who broke her foot while sliding into a base at  a high school softball game.  She said she wasn’t trained properly.  I want to know how a player who had been playing since she was 7 years old could 1) never learn how to slide and 2) make her high school team not knowing how to slide.  I’m sorry moms and dads but we cannot protect our children from everything.  Maybe you can choose to NOT let them participate in anything, then they can sit on the couch watching tv all the time and die at 40 years old weighing 650 pounds and not being able to get out of the chair.
One of the comments on the CBS site asked why there wasn’t a law requiring chest protection.  Well, first, I don’t want a law requiring something to try to protect everything.  We have too many laws anyhow.  We shouldn’t need laws to tell us to do something we feel needs to be done.  If you feel your child should have a face mask, a mouth guard, etc., then buy it and put it on them.  If you choose not to do that then shut up.  Second, I simply have to point at one example that is indicative of our attitudes about many things, not just youth sports.  How many of you, especially if you live in California, are still texting while driving?  Enough said?
I pray that God will provide some comfort to Hayden’s family in this difficult time.  It is a tragedy that every parents hopes they will never have to endure.  My daughter was a softball pitcher and I can assure you that there were times that I worried about her safety standing 40 feet away from a kid with a stick trying to hit the ball she just threw.  But we have two choices when it comes to sports; when it comes to life: 
Participate to the fullest or take your ball and go home.

This entry was posted on Sunday, June 5th, 2011 at 04:08 and is filed under Coaching, Program Management. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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