The Heart of a (One-Legged) Youth Athlete

The fundamentals of playing baseball are throwing, fielding, hitting, and running.  If you learn and develop these fundamental actions you can play baseball.  Pretty simple right?  But what if you only had one leg?  Not so simple anymore.

The athlete who “has heart”

“Heart” is a word thrown around the sports world.  Every athlete wants to be known as one who has heart.  When someone says “he/she has heart” it means that player is tough.  They come through in the clutch.  They don’t give up when faced with adversity. I have witnessed a lot of athletes in 30+ years of being involved with sports.  What I witnessed recently has to be at the top of the list of an athlete who has heart.  I mentioned earlier the basic fundamentals of playing baseball, and how having one leg might complicate things.  It doesn’t matter when you have heart.

Playing little league baseball on one leg

While coaching my son’s little league baseball teams for the past four seasons (ages 4-7), I’ve noticed how challenging it is for youth athletes to develop the basic baseball fundamentals. The YouTube video below shows a little league baseball player by the name of Adam Bender who has one leg.  Adam doesn’t let  anything stop him.  He throws, he fields, he hits, and he runs with the best of them. Watch the video below, and let it inspire you and your youth athletes. Do you have an example of a youth athlete who has shown tremendous heart in playing sports?  Please share in the comment section below. Jackie Bledsoe, Jr.  is sports parent of three, and writes on sports parenting. He has played sports for over 30 years, including the collegiate level, and coached youth sports for the past eight years.  Photo and Video Credit: YouTube

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