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Last update: 2007-06-30

Episode 18 - Dealing With Slumps

2007-06-30 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

Slumps are a reality in baseball. But, mentally tough baseball players are able to limit and contain slumps. Mentally tough players have 3 game slumps, other players have 3 week long slumps. We discuss four steps to limiting and containing slumps: 1. Maintain perspective - slumps start and end. 2. Maintain your confidence. If you don't feel confident, then at least act confident. 3. Relax - don't put extra pressure on yourself. Don't try hard, instead try easy. 4. Contain the slump to just one part of the game. If you are in a hitting slump, leave the slump in the batter's box. Don't tale your slump onto the mound, or onto the field with you. Remember - everyone has slumps. The secret is to make them short and contained.…

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Episode 17 - Superstitions

2007-06-15 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

There is no ignoring it - superstitions are part of baseball culture. In this episode, we discuss the good and bad side of superstitions, and give players some advice on developing good pre-game routines, and preventing superstitions from becoming distractions and excuses.…

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Episode 16 - Visualization

2007-05-31 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

Visualization is a powerful tool to help you prepare to compete in baseball. It is used at advanced levels of baseball, but is rarely taught to high school and youth players. Visualization is essentially playing baseball in your own mind. Done effectively, it prepares you to step on the field and directly impacts muscle memory and the mind-body connection, which is so important in baseball. There are two types of visualization in baseball. Visualizing a situation - like standing in the batter’s box or on the mound. This is done with as much breadth and detail as possible. The player tries to totally create the entire scene in his head - using all senses, sight, sound, smell, taste and feel. The second type of visualization is performance-based, where the player actually visualizes the act of hitting the ball, throwing the pitch or fielding the ball. This is more narrowly focused visualization that directly links vision with muscles. Both are important tools to help players improve mental toughness.…

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Episode 15 - Competing Against Yourself

2007-05-15 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

In this episode we discuss "competing against yourself". To consistently improve and build skills in baseball, you need to compete against yourself. This is what separates players who excel at the next level, whether that is varsity high school, college or professional baseball, is this pursuit of excellence. The discipline to challenge yourself to get better and better, regardless of the competition.…

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Episode 14 - Focus

2007-05-01 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

We discuss FOCUS. Focus is the ability to narrow your mental attention to a specific act or a specific object, like a baseball. There are two secrets to FOCUS: First, focus on controllables. Controllables are what you body does, what your mind thinks and how you behave. Second, focus on now, the exact current moment. Don't be distracted by the past or the future. In baseball. complete focus should be on the next pitch. That is all that matters. Click here for the concentration grid discussed in the podcast.…

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Episode 13 - Relaxation

2007-04-15 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

We discuss RELAXATION. Baseball is a unique combination of skill, power and rhythm. To succeed, you need a clear mind and relaxed muscles. Three tools for relaxation are discussed in detail: 1. Deep breathing 2. Focusing your eyes 3. Clearing your mind Each player needs to develop his own personal routine, using these tools to relax and perform at his best.…

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Episode 12 - Responsibility

2007-04-01 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

Mature, mentally tough baseball players need to take RESPONSIBILITY for their own baseball performance. Here are the keys: 1 . Take responsibility for all aspects of your game - mental and physical 2. Control and responsbility go hand in hand. If you want to control your game, you need to take responsibility. 3. Take reponsibility for your relationships and behavior toward teammates, coaches, umpires, opponents and fans. The only way to learn from mistakes is to take responsibility for them. Don't make excuses. Take responsibility, learn and then move on.…

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Special Edition - Making Your Own Team

2007-03-24 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

This special edition of the Diamond Edge is a follow up to Episode 10 on Tryouts. This special edition is for players who did not have a successful tryout and did not make the team they wanted to. Some self-reflection help and perspective is offered, along with words of encouragement for passionate baseball players.…

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Special Edition - Baseball and Academics

2007-03-15 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

This is a special edition of the Diamond Edge. The focus is "Baseball and Academics". Brendan Sullivan, co-founder of Headfirst Baseball, is interviewed. The interview was originally included in the Coaches Corner podcast. But, there are great insights in this interview that every serious select baseball player needs to hear.…

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Episode 11 - Re-defining Success

2007-03-15 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

In this episode, we discuss how select baseball players can re-define success to go beyond wins & losses and personal stats. Don't let your success be defined by the scorebook. Instead, create your own definition of success based on what you can control and how you play the game. If you focus and get better at the process of playing baseball, your winning percentage and personal stats will naturally improve. The homework assignment is to develop the metrics that you will use this season to measure your success after every game. It is how you will answer the question "how was the game?"…

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Episode 10 - Baseball Tryouts

2007-02-26 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

This episode is dedicated entirely to helping players perform well and succeed during baseball tryouts. The key message is that smart coaches pay attention to and assess each player's mental make-up during tryouts. They are looking for mentally tough, mature baseball players that play with a confident, relaxed, intense focus. Coaches look for players that they want to have in their dugout, players that they will enjoy coaching. This is something that is 100% within the control of the player. A number of specific recommendations and tips for tryouts are provided in the podcast.…

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Episode 9 - Positive Self-Talk

2007-02-24 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

In this episode, we discuss positive self talk. Self-talk is the conversation you have with yourself, either silently or out loud. Positive self talk helps you become a confident, relaxed and focused baseball player. Positive messages focus on what you can do, while negative self talk focuses on what you cannot do. Self-talk is 100% within the control of the player. You control what you say to yourself. Positive self-talk is not easy. It takes self-discipline. Positive self-talk is skill that you need to work on. The homework assignment is to write down three core positive statements about yourself as a baseball player this season. The second part of the homework assignment is to start creating game situation self-talk statements during practice drills. This is a skill and a routine that you can develop now, if you work at it.…

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Episode 8 - Confronting Fear

2007-02-17 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

In this episode, we discuss fear. Fear of failure is a real part of baseball, because baseball players fail a lot. Fear is an acid to mental toughness, eating away at confidence, intensity and focus. To control fear, you must directly confront your fear. What potential consequences are you most afraid of? Fear is something that you create in your own mind. Your mind creates exaggerated consequences of failure that must be confronted and challenged. In the homework assignment, players are asked to identify and analyze the fear that they have experienced on the baseball field.…

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Episode 7 - Intensity

2007-02-15 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

In this episode, we discuss intensity - what is intensity, what is the right level of intensity, and how to control intensity. Each player must determine his own "optimum" level of intensity and learn to control his intensity level for peak performance. The homework assignment is to review your past season and ask yourself a set of questions about your intensity level. This will help you determine if you need to increase or decrease your intensity level.…

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Episode 6 - Being Part of a Team

2007-01-30 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

In this episode, we discuss what it means to be part of a team and the importance of positive, supportive relationships with every teammate on your team. The homework assignment is to identify three players on your team that you can develop a more positive, supportive relationship with.…

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Episode 5 - Confidence

2007-01-15 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

In this episode, we discuss confidence. Confidence is something you need to work on and develop, it does not just happen. Confidence is a process, the process of setting goals, working hard to make progress, and then feeling good about yourself as you succeed. You need to take control and responsbility over your own confidence.…

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Episode 4 - Setting Goals

2006-12-30 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

In this episode, we discuss setting goals. Goals are important because they give us direction, force commitment and because they are an important part of building confidence. You need to have both long term goals for the season, and shorting term goals. Goals should be within your control and focused on "how" you play, not just results. Also, don't forget to set goals for the mental side and improving your team skills.…

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Episode 3 - Expectations

2006-12-15 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

In this episode we discuss "expectations" - why are they important and why you need to take control of your own expecations. The homework assignment is to determine your own expectations from playing baseball over the next couple of years.…

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Episode 2 - What are Life Lessons?

2006-11-30 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

In this episode, we discuss what is meant by the term “life lessons”. We discuss what a life lesson is using an example, then identify how the lessons from the baseball diamond can be applied in other parts of your life. The homework assignment is to identify two “life lessons” that you have learned from baseball over the past several years.…

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Episode 1 - What is Mental Toughness?

2006-11-15 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

In this first episode, we first introduce the concept behind the Diamond Edge podcast. Then, we discuss what is meant my mental toughness, using three examples - Derek Jeter, Greg Maddux and Albert Pujols. We list the key ingredients of mental toughness, and discuss its importance to success. The homework assignment is to think of examples of mental toughness that you have witnessed, either on the playing field or in school. <a href="http://www.podcastalley.com/"> My Podcast Alley feed!</a> {pca-77a5131081c447ac7791ff580798caab}…

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Orientation

2006-10-31 :: mark.gallion@gmail.com (Mark Gallion)

This provides an orientation to the Diamond Edge podcast and recommends an approach for players, coaches and parents to get the most out of the podcast.…

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Diamond Edge

A podcast for 13-18 year old baseball players, to help them improve mental toughness and learn important life lessons from baseball.

Diamond Edge


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