- Talya DiGirolamo
Wow! What an amazing fall season! I was able to work with so many players in the area, see them improve, see them laugh and see the community that softball builds. I've met so many wonderful families and coaches this past year, I'm truly grateful every day for what softball brings to my life.
This past fall I worked with the Northside Youth Organization (NYO) and Druid Hills Youth Sports (DHYS), offering clinics throughout September and October. These months lined up well with the recreation league fall season and the girls did a fantastic job of working and improving over the season. I had many parents come up to me over the last couple of weeks of the season reporting that their daughter pitched their first strike-out of their life this season! Many pitchers got the opportunity to get on the mound in the game for the first time in their life... and came off the mound feeling good about their performance!
We focused on mechanics mostly. With NYO, we did pitching, hitting and fielding clinics every Saturday morning in September and continued with the pitching clinics throughout October. With DHYS, we held pitching clinics for all weeks in October.
Each week, we reviewed what we learned the previous week and added to it. Our hitters worked from the ground up. Feet first to maintain a solid foundation of balance and made our way up to hands, the path of the swing. In fielding we mixed it up by position, starting with Corners (focusing on grounders without much range), next week we did middle infield (focusing on grounders with lots of range), the third week we did outfield (lots of fly balls and attacking the catch) and the final week, we reviewed and repeated all we learned to make it stick. With pitching we started with the start and end of the pitch (i.e. presentation and snap), then filled in the middle throughout the weeks. Beginners worked on generally learning the mechanics with more experienced pitchers working on how to use leg drive properly.
Thanks to all players, families, coaches and organizations that allowed me to work with them this past fall! I absolutely love this sport and love all the built relationships that come with it!
I look forward to many more days out on the ball field!
And remember players to keep working over winter break! You put all that work into fall, maintain it so you still got it come spring season!!!
Please contact me if you're interested in group or private lessons over winter :)
And finally a special thank you to all the assistants who helped run the clinics this fall, including Toko Miller, Max Faass, Janelle Turnquest, Jessica MacWilliams, Lana Herrmann and Ashley Powers (Emory), Caitlin Weaver (Agnes Scott), Erielle Reid (Druid Hills HS) and Kelsey Nunley (USSSA Pride, U. of Kentucky).