BY BARRY WARNER
Little League Baseball is geared to provide an outlet of healthful activity and training under good leadership, in an atmosphere of wholesome community participation. The organization is dedicated to helping youngsters become good citizens while learning the values of teamwork, sportsmanship and fair play.
Little League Baseball is open to boys and girls between the ages of 4 and 18, and offers different divisions for age groups and sexes. From 1951-1974, Little League Baseball was only open to boys, but in 1974, the rules were revised to allow girls in the program, based on Title IX. The organization is a 501(c)(3) non-profit whose mission is “to promote, develop, supervise and voluntarily assist in all lawful ways, the interests of those who will participate in Little League Baseball.”
Little League Baseball was granted a federal charter in the United States on July 16, 1964 (Title 36 of the United States Code). The highlight of Little League Baseball is the World Series, which is held annually in South Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Teams participate in state and regional elimination tournaments most of the summer leading up to the Little League World Series in the middle of August.
“Administrators of the New City Little League have many duties including knowing the regulations under which the League operates, plus appointing managers, coaches, umpires and members of committees,” New City Little League Administrator Paul Kahn told The Rockland County Times. “A Little League Baseball team offers the best possible vehicle for kids to grow and enjoy the game. Early on, each child should play an equal number of minutes in the game, but once a participant is 12 years old, the games become more competitive.”
“Behavioral guidelines for parents attending games should include cheering good plays by both teams—not yelling instructions at their children during the game and not making insulting remarks directed at the umpires,” Kahn continued. “I served as a coach and my three sons played on the New City Little League teams, therefore, volunteering as an administrator is a way I can give back to the community.
The New City Little League will host a series of All-Star games at Zukor Park this month to benefit ARC Rockland. “Since 2000, many thousands of dollars raised have been donated to support programs for developmentally disabled adults and children,” Kahn said.
The American Center for Disease Control and Prevention in addition to the Heart Association recommend playing Little League Baseball for the following reasons:
- Stronger heart muscles- Baseball is one of the best cardiovascular training as it strengthens the muscles of the heart, as well as improves the capacity of the lungs. Pitching the ball, running the bases to catch a fly ball and other activities offers a short burst of cardiovascular exercise.
- Stronger arms- To enhance joint flexibility and build stronger arms, the child can throw and catch a baseball after he/she swings the baseball bat. This works the biceps, triceps, chest and shoulders.
- Stronger legs- The major muscle groups in the legs are moved laterally after the child throws and squats down to recover a ball. This will involve the hamstrings, quadriceps and calf muscles. Running is a good cardiovascular workout and for toning and building up leg muscles.
- Better hand-eye coordination- A vast amount of coordination between the hands and the eyes are required for pitching the ball and batting. Improving the coordination of the eyes and hands will help the child develop better cognitive and social skills.
- Burn calories- All the activities of the game may increase metabolism and burn calories. Childhood obesity has become a serious problem in past years and baseball can help overcome this health problem.
- Stress reliever- Getting involved in a game of baseball is the best option to develop mental focus and concentration that refreshes the mind for everyday distractions.
- Sharpen the mind- Making split decisions on which correct strategy to implement on a certain play can help keep the mind sharp and alert.
The New City Little League will host a series of All-Star games from July 13, 2017 to July 19, 2017 at Zukor Park in New City for the benefit of ARC Rockland, an organization that services children and adults with disabilities and special needs.