Teaching kids to believe in themselves

What really is the most important life lesson coming from the 2016 Keystone Little League All-Stars’ wonderful and exciting journey of comeback games and championships?

They’re learning to believe in themselves … just as with the 2011 team members.

For sure, parents and coaches can teach a kid a lot of very important things in sports – any sport.

How to best catch a baseballl, shoot a free-throw or kick a soccer ball. How to swing the bat with the best body mechanics.

The right way to pitch. Those teaching moments come amid endless practices and lots of travel … exhausting travel to far away games. And while all kids have varying athletic skills at 11, 12 and 13 years old, what matters is how much a kid – a boy or girl competing or participating in any sport – believes in themselves.

Just as parents must do, coaches give the players consistent messages meant to teach.

Keep battling.

Keep your head up.

Learn from your mistakes.

Don’t take the strikeout at the plate out on the field with you.

There’s a lot of game (life) left.

Learning to play good baseball and is also learning how to succeed in life.

When Little League Baseball President Peter J. McGovern wrote the Little League Pledge in 1954, he ended it with, “But win or lose, I will always do my best.”

All life lessons … and all tied around work ethic.

Yes, work ethic … something that can be encouraged, but also something that really comes from within.

Since the 2011 Keystone team made it all the way to the world stage at the Little League World Series, the league has seen tremendous growth in the number of kids registering.

Why?

Because coaches are doing a great job teaching life lessons as they teach kids how to do their best.

Win or lose, this 2016 team affirms that … and it shows us how the league is working to build a successful tradition of strong youth baseball teams – and good kids.

We’re proud of you Keystone!