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Breaking Bad Habits at the Plate

'Deprogramming' of kids is the toughest part of the job for high school baseball coach

OKLAHOMA CITY – It was an easy question for Steve Schwarz to answer. The longtime Westmoore High School coach has had to develop many players during his tenure, and freely admits that “deprogramming” kids of some really bad techniques is the toughest part for him.

“Breaking bad habits is the toughest thing for a coach to do,” Schwarz said. “Especially when they have been taught something their whole life. You keep showing them a thousand times, but the best way for them to do it is repetition, repetition, repetition. If you can’t get them to cut it out and keep repeating it the right way, they’re never going to figure it out.”

While Schwarz has seen it all, there is one particular bad habit that just grates on his nerves and is also the toughest to make disappear.

“The old school habit of putting their elbow up in the air while batting,” Schwarz said. “Because it’s got to come down. That’s 1930s stuff that we still see all the time. Dads teach them stuff they were taught as kids. That would be my most annoying one by far.”

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