Softball Re-certification is available to those coaches who have been previously certified in the Sport of Softball. If you have not been to a coach’s certification class in athletics you do not qualify to re-certify. To Re-certify, a coach must make sure that the Volunteer application and protective behaviors training is up to date. Please check the Certified Coaches List found on the Coach’s Corner page. Re-certification is not valid without an up to date volunteer application, protective behaviors class and concussion awareness.
Re-certification should only be done when you are close to expiration of your original certification. Please do not take the course until you have less than 3 months to go on your certification. Please check the Certified Coaches List found on the Coach’s Corner page. Certification is good for 4 years.
Special Olympics Softball is available to all persons age 8 and above, having been identified by an agency or professional as having an Intellectual disability, or a closely related disability which means having functional limitations in both general learning and in adaptive skills ( such as recreation, work, independent living, self-direction, or self-care), and having registered to participate in Special Olympics.
Application for Participation
The Application for Participation in Special Olympics is commonly referred to as the Medical Release. This form is good for a specific 3 year period. The dates of the forms effectiveness is printed on the top center of the form. It is only good for this time period. Example – September 1, 2010 through August 31, 2013. Coaches should make copies of this form after completing all information. Please do not leave off any information. IF there is information that does not apply please write does not apply in that space. This form must be signed by a Physician, Physician’s assistant, Nurse Practitioner or a Clinical Nurse Specialist. It must also be signed by either an adult athlete ( with witness signature) or a Parent/ Guardian. Athletes will not be able to train or compete without the release. Coaches should have a copy of the medical release with them any time they have an athlete with them. Coaches are also responsible for updating the forms whenever a change has taken place, such as, medicine changes.
Coaches have a lot of responsibility. It is imperative that coaches find enough assistant coaches to help cover all of the duties of a coach. The following is a list of responsibilities of the coach. This list will not cover everything a coach has to do in order for the team to be successful.
- Coaches must have enough help to supervise athletes at all times.
- Coaches must have a proper practice facility that is both safe and meets the needs of the athletes.
- Coaches must have medical releases with them at all times. Coaches must be aware of all medical issues of their athletes.
- Coaches must know first aid and have a phone available to call for help if needed.
- Coaches must train their athletes for no less than 8 weeks prior to competition. The training must be appropriate.
- Coaches must select sports and events that are appropriate for their athletes age and abilities.
- Coaches must insure that all athletes are uniformed appropriately.
- Coaches must know how to complete entry forms and do so on a timely basis.
- Coaches will be a positive influence on their athletes.
- Coaches must keep a written training plan for all of their practices.
Special Olympics divisions Athletes based upon their age, gender, and ability, with ability being the primary indicator. This aspect of Special Olympics is what separates Special Olympics from all other sports organizations. Every Athlete will receive an award. Athletes disqualified will receive a participation award.
Softball Divisioning is done through a bracket system. Brackets are determined by number of teams competing and the time allotted for the Softball facility. Teams are guaranteed at least 2 games in all brackets. The sport of Softball may not allow the event director to split Athletes by age and sex, which is acceptable.
Individual Softball skills will be divisioned by Age, Sex and preliminary scores. The scores are turned in by the coach and must reflect the true abilities of the Athlete. The event director may have to combine age divisions and gender divisions while using the preliminary score as the primary indicator for Divisioning.
All Special Olympics paperwork is now available on-line. Coaches may complete the entry forms, medical release, down’s addendum, and coaches card on-line, then print the forms and submit. The medical release and down syndrome addendum must be signed by an authorized person. All entry forms and medicals are due by the deadline that you will see on the schedule. Most can be mailed in but some must be hand delivered. You must pay attention to the directions in the schedule. The deadline is the date that paperwork must arrive, not when it is to be mailed. Mail your forms in time for the paperwork to reach the Event Director by the deadline. Please do not mail certified mail to Area or Sectional event directors, you may mail certified mail to the State office for Summer Games and Winter Games registration.
Special Olympics Oklahoma offers two different forms of Softball competition, Individual Softball Skills and Unified Softball. Individual skills are for those athletes not ready to play competitive softball or for those athletes that are not able to find a team to play on. Unified Softball has 3 levels of play, with the Low level utilizing a Tee for batting and the Highest level using ASA Slow Pitch Softball rules.
1. Coaches Must have enough help to supervise Athletes at all times.
2. Coaches must have a proper practice facility that is both safe and meets the needs of the Athletes.
3. Coaches must have medical releases with them at all times. Coaches must be aware of all medical issues of their Athletes.
4. Coaches must know first aid and have a phone available to call for help if needed.
5. coaches must train their Athletes for no less than 8 weeks prior to competition. The training must be appropriate.
6. Coaches must select sports and events that are appropriate for their Athlete’s age and abilities. Softball can be a dangerous sport. It is very important that coaches not play Athletes in levels that they are above or below, for their safety and the safety of others.
7. Coaches must insure that all Athletes are uniformed appropriately.
8. Coaches must know how to complete entry forms and do so on a timely basis.
9. Coaches will be a positive influence on their Athletes.
10. coaches must keep a written training plan for all of their practices.
Special Olympics Inc. has coaching guides available on their website with 8 week training plans written out for you. You can access those plans at www.specialolympics.org These guides have a wealth of information that every coach should have. Please go to this website and read the Softball coaches guide.
Below you will find the Special Olympics Oklahoma rules of Individual Softball Skills and Unified Softball.