HOUSTON – Like most athletes, University of Houston senior baseball pitcher Lael Lockhart Jr. was crushed when his season unexpectedly ended due to the coronavirus outbreak.
“It was kind of like... well, that really could have been the last time I played college baseball. It was an empty feeling knowing there was no real true ending to any of it,” said Lockhart.
Lockhart gets another year of eligibility thanks to the NCAA ruling, but it’s still strange not to play baseball at this time.
“It’s always been baseball during spring break so it’s kind of weird to have free time at this time of the year," he said.
So how do you keep a team mentally disciplined at such a strange time? UH head coach Todd Whitting has his team working with Brian Cain, one of the top mental performance coaches in the country. Whitting hopes Cain will help his players stay focused, give them a proper sleep schedule, and inspire them to use this time for good.
“They’re highly committed and highly dedicated to this, and there’s almost a hole or a void in their life that needs to be filled,” said Cain.
He said this is the perfect time for athletes to reflect and think about life after their career is over.
“Let’s press the pause button and let’s take this time to reflect and say, wait a minute, am I living in alignment with the best version of myself,” explained Cain.
For Lael and his teammates, a sleep schedule, healthy eating, and a home workout regiment will help during this time.
Cain recommended everyone check on their E to E ratio: Entertainment vs Education, and perhaps use this time to re-align our goals.