Softball is more than just a game: what it’s taught me

Softball has taught me countless lessons I will always take with me


Jenna Haskin

Softball has always been a part of me.

I’ve had a softball in my hand for as long as I can remember. If you asked me when I started playing, I wouldn’t be able to tell you an age, because I don’t remember a “before”. This sport has always been a part of my life, and I can’t imagine where I would be without it.

Softball has been there for me in times where I have needed it most; it has been a crutch to lean on. When I didn’t even feel like getting up in the morning, I knew I had to because I had practice that afternoon. When life was rough at home or a family member was sick, I could go to the field and forget about those worries for a little bit. Softball has always been my home away from home.

In all the years I’ve played, yes, I’ve learned how to throw down to second base again and again. And I’ve learned how to read the spin of a pitch after catching on each team I’ve been on.

But, truth is, there is so much more to learn than how to play the actual game. Softball isn’t just a sport.

When you’re on that field, you’re out there with nine or more girls and a lot of coaches. You learn how to work with different people and what to do in a variety of scenarios. You learn how to be a part of something bigger than yourself.

As a catcher, I have eyes on the entire field and get the chance to see everything play out. My teammates depend on me to tell them what is happening and what to do. I used to be the girl on the team that didn’t say a word. But now that I’m about to graduate and move on to go play in college, I don’t think there is a girl out there that is louder than me. I’ve learned to be vocal and communicate with my teammates.

What about when the game is tied and the winning run is on third base? Your team is up to bat. You have to believe in your teammate, whoever it might be. You have to know that they are going to get a hit for you guys and help your team win. You have to learn to trust them.

And if they don’t get your team that vital hit? You love them anyway because they are a part of your team.

Not only that, you learn how to fail. If you fail seven of ten times when you’re up to bat, you’re considered great. Because those other three times, that other 30%, that is where you succeed. Softball teaches you to enjoy the small successes in the game and in life.

There is a lot that you can be taught in a sport, but it’s more important to learn about the life lessons the game has to offer. You can show up everyday and not learn a single thing if you don’t want to, so you have to take advantage of what is in front of you.

Softball has never been just a game — it’s an experience and an opportunity.