AMOS International hosts baseball and softball course

Fri 2 Mar 2018

Early in February, students from AMOS International, a Sports Business School based at Coventry University, participated in three days of lectures on baseball and softball development.

This was the second time the school has run this course, with plans to make it an annual event.

The course was led by Will Lintern, BaseballSoftballUK’s former National Development Manager and Head Coach of the GB U18 Baseball Team, and included sessions on gender equality, developing culture, delivering sport in developing countries, personal development and time management as an entrepreneur.

Other instructors included former BaseballSoftballUK employees Liam Carroll, currently GB Baseball Head Coach, and Tom Gillespie, now Executive Director of Play Global, a non-profit organisation focusing in international areas of conflict including India, Israel, Ukraine and Uganda.  They were joined by BSUK Softball High Performance Academy Guest Coach Tara Henry, co-founder and CEO of non-profit organisation Run the Bases, and Alan Dean, Director of Sports Science at Great Britain Baseball.

Day One

On Day One, the students completed BaseballSoftballUK’s Activator course, delivered by Will Lintern.  Students had the opportunity to learn the rules of baseball/softball, develop their communication skills as officials, and play the game.

Lintern told the students: “Baseball and softball teach you skills about communication, teamwork and perseverance that are applicable in careers in business and sports management.”

You can see a short video from the Activator session here

Day Two

The next day, at the AMOS International campus in Greenwich, students met Alan Dean, who provided insights from running his own small business on time optimisation and personal development.  Alan also highlighted how, as future leaders of sports organisations, teams and agencies, the students were likely to be more successful if they understood the true value of such a position.

In the afternoon, Tara Henry shared her vision of how softball skills and values can be used as a tool to foster gender equality, inclusion, positivity and group unity.  Henry, a former high-level college softball player and graduate of UCLA, recounted her experiences from trips to The Gambia and Malta, detailing how her Run the Bases organisation uses innovative techniques for relationship-building.

“Sport – and especially softball – has the power to break down barriers.  We give international coaches the opportunity to learn and grow in different coaching environments,”  Henry said.

Day Three

The third and final day of lectures was run by Liam Carroll and Tom Gillespie.

Carroll explained how he handles the mission of developing the best British baseball talent into world-class athletes and teams.  By developing culture within the programme, he hopes to further the mission of Great Britain Baseball: Inspire, Develop, Perform.

“Culture eats strategy for breakfast,” Carroll said. “You can have the mission, the values, and the plan – all the ingredients for success – but if your culture is corrupted, you can’t expect to hit your goals.”

Tom Gillespie, who is also an international scout for the Pittsburgh Pirates and Head Coach of the German National Baseball Team, closed out the lectures.  He spoke about using sport to help children and young people see past their differences and play as a team, with the all-important ingredient of respect. 

Of particular interest to the students were Gillespie’s insights into the challenges of setting up a non-profit organisation, and recruiting Board members with skills sets and backgrounds from outside existing networks.

Summing up

Through discussion and practical examples over the three days, the AMOS International students were encouraged to think about the elements needed to develop and grow a new sport, and they found that the deployment of international coaches is a key issue that has to be considered when planning development projects.

Student Mylene Loiseau said:“More than simply discovering a new sport and receiving a coaching award, the AMOS International students learned new values, while furthering our own personal development.”

Adapted from an article co-written by AMOS International students Mylene Loiseau, Chloe Bouju, Quentin Salomex, Chloe Sapena and Simon Labaere.

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