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Discussion: I never dreamed it would be this hard to start playing again.

Posted Discussion
March 16, 2012
Grey Dawg
Men's 50
8 posts
I never dreamed it would be this hard to start playing again.
I started playing last year. I had not played any tournaments since mid to late 90,s last league play was 2004. When I played it was D and C class and B Industrial USSSA out of the Atlanta area I was a average player. I started umpiring and playing golf and got away from playing. Some of my golf buddies invited me to play senior softball. I scouted out the league it looked fun and joined Spring 2011. BASSA out of Pasadena TX is were I play now. I thought I was still athletic and I could step right back in was I ever wrong. I battled hamstrings on both legs and a sore heel and only played about 15 games the whole year. I am working out hard on my game and conditioning this year and best of all I have a reason. I love how the game challenges me as I have aged. I have posted a little about bats to get up to speed.I love the knowledge on these boards. We have some tournament players in our league they have helped me a lot with advice. I will close this thread with I love this game more now than I ever did.
March 16, 2012
cyborg45
78 posts
Any time off, let alone 8 years, is tough to overcome as we get older. Didn't play much last year due to a separated shoulder early in the year. This year has been really an eye opener with my first year in senior softball. Normally a good hitter with good power, my first outing was pretty humbling. Moving back to the outfield also seemed really strange. Lots of work to do. Good luck.
March 17, 2012
ShaneV
Men's 55
381 posts
I thought I was going to miss a year in 1989 when I entered treatment on the advice of a judge. Managed to play a little that year. Thought maybe I would have to quit playing softball after I quit drinking because it seemed like everyone played softball as an excuse to drink. Still somewhat true today however not so much with seniors. I find many in senior softball do not drink anymore or very little. Many also try to eat right and stay away from the typical concession stands at the parks. At least three of our guys had surgery in the offseason to correct problems that could and often have ended softball careers. When I see the guys in their 70's and 80's playing, I think that's what I want to do. I hope I can retire between 66 and 70 and spend all my time traveling and playing softball.

ShaneV
March 17, 2012
Wes
Men's 65
311 posts
My last full year of playing was 1959 in high school---
I started senior ball at 65---took three full years, including winter work to get back to a level that I was not embarrassed to take the field
wes
March 17, 2012
17Black
Men's 50
219 posts
I also played on multiple teams, multiple tournaments until I was 40 and then "retired" never thinking I would play again.

at 48 got a chance to play Over 50 ball again (one of my leagues allowed two guys per team maximum between 48-50 but they can only hit one home run per game)

Those 7-8 years took a toll on me. Ruptured (not torn) both achilles tendon's first two years, planter faciutis in feet (spelling?) multiple hamstring and back issues.

I started taking a yoga class with six team mates at 49 and the instructor tailored it for guys our age to help with conditioning-----since then, no more major injuries for any of us---but if anybody else tries this I advise doing it year round and off season too (as we do)

If you haven't played in a long time, timing of your swing can be an issue for a while, and it depends on your condition and how many reps you can take to get straightened out again. Can take 1-3 years with other guys I've seen who took time off and got back in the game.

I would have never thought when I was 22 I'd still be playing over 30 years later!!!
March 17, 2012
Grey Dawg
Men's 50
8 posts
Thanks to all for your stories feedback. I hit about 150 cuts off a tee today trying to work on timing and bat speed. Watching a lot of the softball hitting on you tube there is some good stuff on there.
17Black the yoga thing sounds cool,I know it would help me hope to keep the. Wes I know what you mean last year I was embarrassed also I had guys a lot older and in better shape running for me at first most of last year. ShaneV I agree I want to play a long time also and will have to workout hard and eat right. Cyborg I play the outfield also I had to get use to wearing glasses no issues now seeing the ball well off the bat.
March 18, 2012
Tater50
336 posts
HMMM!!! I do not post very much on this board; but stories like these are very interesting & worthy of reading.

Grey Dawg: way to go & glad you are a part of us.

Tater50
Columbus LX
March 18, 2012
goforit
97 posts
Its great to see other stories like mine, i stopped playing softball in 1988. I ran into and old friend of mine outside of St. George Utah in 2005 and he told me about senior softball so i decided i wanted to play again. I found my old glove and practiced alittle and got lucky and hooked up with some great guys that were starting up a team called the Arizona Mob, After we broke up acouple of years ago i started playing for Master Collision out of Colorado. I've been blessed to come back and play on good teams with great guys.

Keep having fun everyone

John Giesler
March 18, 2012
Olden Slow
Men's 65
175 posts
I stopped playing in 97..Just started back in Novemeber at the ripe young age of 63..Taken me a few months but am now back playing 3 times a week. Really sorry I missed all the years. But I am glad to be playing again...Still adjusting but get better each game I play..
March 18, 2012
pitcher55
Men's 55
130 posts
i'm 58,and a pitcher. both of my hips are titanium.i've had two lower back surgeries,i severed both rotater cuffs in my shoulders, with a total reconstruction in the left one. my back hurts alot, all the time.two surgeries on my left hand. i quit playing with the young guys after '09, and started playing senior tourneys 10 months later. i'm the slowest runner on the team.the only way i can still play is, i never quit. it hurts me to play but i love this game and enjoy the comoradery with the team.i'm hoping to play into my 70's. i know i'm gonna pay for it down the road but, I LOVE TO PLAY SOFTBALL!!!
March 19, 2012
steve65
Men's 65
175 posts
I played while in the army --that was in 1966---did not play again other than pitch to the kids in the yard until a church league in 2009--played in senior league half a year in 2010 and then played on travel team last year as well as a couple of leagues. I could not run from home to 1st the first year in church league and legs were always hurting. Last year for the first time ever I played the outfield and ran for many teammates. so at 64 I was acting like a child again and had a ball doing it--In my opinion Senior softball with all of its flaws is the best thing to come along for many of us.
March 21, 2012
17Black
Men's 50
219 posts
I'll be honest with you (in my reponse above about yoga)

When a team-mate suggested it a few years ago I had major reservations as I really had "no idea" what yoga was------and in the back of my mind saw people meditating, chanting and humming a lot LOL.

That ^^^^^ is not what it is---------and if you can find the right instructor, it's everything "mature softball players need"

Most of it is all about stretching. Our team instructor works on different parts of body every session--------Every session includes hamstrings-------then one week will be concentration on shoulders and neck, maybe lower back the next, upper back another, with new exercises introduced often.

It "really helped" and cut down on those kinds of injuries-------certainly players will still get bruised sliding, diving or getting hit with balls, but the YOGA improved the quality of health in the game, and big time when playing multiple games in a short period (like tournaments)
March 21, 2012
E4/E6
Men's 60
850 posts
Olden Slow, Tom, you call THAT playing? =)
March 21, 2012
Olden Slow
Men's 65
175 posts
You're killing me here John...Don't let all my secrets out..I'm not very good but I am always entertaining :-o)
BTW; You guys going to Vegas ?
March 22, 2012
Webbie25
Men's 60
1972 posts
Good thread. I played class A ball until I was 54 in 2006 and a shoulder surgery made me decide to quit playing with the kids and try Senior ball. I never dreamed it was so competitive. Yes, keeping the old bag of bones together is the hardest part. Played my first games in 1969 so this is my 44th year playing. It is still the best fun. But the trick is 'never stop playing'. It is sooooo hard to come back after several years.
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