The Baseball Observer Nov-Dec 2015 vol 5 - Page 28

5. What are steps that a player can take to keep their emotions under control?

The baseball player can use the VAK framework to keep their emotions on an even keel and working in way that supports their development and performance.

Using the VAK framework, here are three things which have proven successful with baseball players, which they should practice, and which can help the player with the productive use of their emotions, both on and off the baseball diamond:

V--- Visualization --- The player can spend time visualizing their emotions

as it relates to their performance, both good and not so good ones. In this

regard, the player can see themselves mentally remaining cool, calm, and

collected when things are not going well on the field and they can see

themselves responding in an appropriate manner—not overdoing it—

when things are proceeding very well.

A--- Auditory--- The player can identify a key word or phrase and use it as

a way to keep themselves calm, to refocus themselves when things are not

going well and to recognize when they are likely to become unproductive

in the use of their emotions.

K—Kinesthetic--- The player can rely on a very effective, time-proven

kinesthetic method to assist them in staying composed and in control of

their emotions. This method is learning the process of deep breathing and

using deep breathing to center oneself and remain calm, especially in

those situations when the player is unproductive in the use and display of

their emotions.

6. How can a coach or parent teach the player to be responsible for their emotions?

A coach or parent can teach a baseball player to be responsible for their emotions by means of the following instructional steps:

I. Have a meeting with the player about the nature and scope of emotions---

that is what emotions are and how they can affect baseball performance

and the life of the player for better or worse, depending on how they are

managed. As part of this discussion, provide the player with examples of

emotions that can work for the player and that can undermine the player,

on and off the baseball field. This kind of discussion is very important and

fundamental because if the coach or parent wants the player to be

responsible for their emotions, then the player needs to know about and

understand the nature and scope of emotions.

II.Discuss with the player what it means to be responsible for their emotions.

This kind of discussion can center on the player’s willingness to be

accountable for all aspects of their game, including the mental and