During the off-season these girls are physically preparing themselves for the tryouts and season ahead.
On Tuesdays and Thursdays, they meet after school to condition and to work on throwing, fielding, and hitting. On Wednesdays, they arrive at school at 6:15 for early morning hitting workouts.
Coach Tadlock, varsity softball coach, said via e-mail, “Workouts are optional but strongly encouraged. Some workouts are geared towards returning players, some for new players, some workouts are position specific. Some are after school and some as before school to meet the needs of the potential players.”
Brittany Belscher, senior, frequently attends these workouts.
“The workouts are a great way to get into shape and to better your skills to prepare for the season.”
Martha Calvert, junior, is another avid attendee.
“I really like how they help me get ready for the season.”
The softball prospects agree: these workouts are beneficial to their stamina, skills, athleticism and overall team dynamics.
“[The workouts] prepare athlete’s for tryouts. [They] give girls a chance to brush up on skills, meet possible future teammates, learn the coaches expectations, terminology, and be involved in the culture of the program,” said Tadlock via e-mail.
“The workouts are hard, but they are definitely worth it because you get a chance to work on what you’re not good at and what you don’t want to do. You get to key in on negative aspects and fix them. It’s easier to focus on the things that you’re good at, but in order to improve you need to do them,” said Belscher.
Calvert said, “The workouts are a great way to become a team again and you get to see your future teammates, which is good.”
“I like as a coach being able to get an idea before tryouts what the needs of program may be, talent level of incoming players, physical shape of players, and I just love starting the ‘coaching’ process. [I dislike] if participants come and do not take it serious or work hard. I also dislike only being able to work with 8 players at a time. (NCHSSA rule),” said Tadlock via e-mail interview.
However, these workouts are not just for returning varsity players. In fact, returners recommend that new players come out to the workouts.
“I would definitely recommend them to any other players who have not gone to any workouts. They are a good way to get in some practice before the tryouts, and they are a good way to show the coach that you’re committed to softball and it is a priority to you,” said Calvert.
Belscher agreed, “[New players] should come because they better prepare you for the season and it helps build the team up. You get to meet new people so the tryouts are less scary, and you feel less overwhelmed.”
One thing is for sure: the softball team plans to use the off-season workouts to their advantage. They know that when February comes around, they’ll be in great shape and ready to take on any competition.