Understanding the Zone

By Pierce Jones –


Tom Senninger, who is a German educator and adventurer, popularized a model called, “The Learning Zone”. There are four different zones that are crucial to pay attention to, not just in baseball, but to apply in your life and use to evaluate where you are. Oftentimes, we find ourselves carrying around what I would call “different characters” of who we really are; this can be due to different tasks or situations we find ourselves in. There are four key zones throughout this model that need to be touched on and evaluated in order to find what zone you are in, if you are satisfied with that zone, and how you can continue to expand in these zones. The key point to realize throughout this is that there is no “bad zone”, but if we become stagnant in an area, then that is where the problem lies, and we often find ourselves in trouble due to lack of growth.


The first zone is “Comfort”. The Comfort Zone puts us in situations where we often find ourselves in control and feeling safe but can also bring to the table a low risk, low reward situation. Now, why some might find that to be bad, the comfort zone does give us time to reflect and have that feeling of security, which can be crucial at certain times, and we should want to expand this zone.


The second zone is “Fear”. This zone brings many negatives and can cause stress, low self-confidence, excuse making, being affected by others’ opinions, and even procrastination. This is often caused by situations we are not prepared for or by trying to use skills and abilities that we have not yet developed. While in this zone, there is no time for learning due to the stimulus of stress flooding the body, but it can lead you into a zone that is beneficial, which is known as the “Learning Zone”. So, although you may be panicking and unsure of where to go, after the meltdown, it is important to be able to step away and find yourself in the learning zone in order for some good to come out of the fear zone.


The Learning Zone is unique in itself due to the fact that one still may experience some challenges along the way, but it allows us to just have a different outlook or to feel like we are close to having a full grasp on whatever the task may be. This is where we can find ourselves problem solving, acquiring new skills, and expanding our comfort zone. This is a very vital area due to the fact that it can completely change how we learn and how fast we can continue to develop and find new boundaries to conquer.


The “Growth Zone” is the fourth and final zone, and it is crucial in the fact that this is where one will find purpose, live dreams, set new goals, and conquer whatever may be at hand. This is a zone that can be exciting, and we often find ourselves trying to get to so that we can be satisfied.


Ultimately, all of these zones play a crucial role throughout our lives at different times, and truly can develop us into who we are today. I want to take a step forward, though, and have you analyze what zone you are in currently. Are you happy with that zone, and if not, what is needed in order to progress to where you want to be? The whole goal of the zone system is for it to work together and constantly broaden your comfort zone so that whatever scenario you may find yourself in, it becomes a task that is not an issue, and you are able to perform at the highest level.


I understand life moves fast and we can often get caught up in the thought process of “just keep moving forward”, but don’t be afraid to take a step back and look at the zones to see where you find yourself currently and where you could go.



– – – – – – – – – –


Important TBR Updates


  • Our September EPBC’s are sold out! We have released the Fall/Winter dates for our Elite Pitcher’s Boot Camps and registration is now open with spots filling up quick! Click here to register.  


  • Our once a year Youth Pitchers camp dates have been set for October 15th and 16th.  Space is limited to only 24 athletes. “Early Bird” registration (save $250) is good through August 22nd, click here to learn more and register now!


  • Our Elites Catcher’s Boot Camp is scheduled for December 9-11th. Details to follow.  If you’d like to be placed on our Priority Notification list, email Jill@TexasBaseballRanch.com.


Previous post:

Next post: