Interview With Buddy Biancalana of PMPM Sports
Peter Schiller | Aug 12, 2009
Have you ever been playing sports and experienced a feeling that you thought was only seen in the movies that is called being “in the zone”? Ifyou have or even if you’d like to read more about people who have experienced this, please read on. I recently had the pleasure and privelidge of interviewing former MLB player and World Series star, BuddyBiancalana. In this interview, Buddy talks about his career, the World Series and life after baseball and his co-founding of PMPM Sports.
Baseball Reflections (BR): Looking back at your time in both KC and Houston, which teammates did you see “in the zone” on a regular basis (if anyone)?
Buddy Biancalana (BB): Bret Saberhagen was the one who was most often locked in, and at a very young age. It was a real pleasure playing behind him, because I could count on him to consistently hit his spots. Charlie Leibrandt could access the zone on a pretty regular basis as could George Brett.
BR: During your time in or around the game, who have you seen that is able to stay “in the zone” most consistently?
BB: The trio of great pitchers in Atlanta, Maddux, Glavine and Smoltz. All three were able to access deep levels of silence in their minds, which is one of the key components of being in the zone. Smoltz currently is not experiencing this silence, and therefore looks nothing like he did during his successful years. Most players don’t know where to look to find the zone and therefore, fluidity in their of motion.
BR: After over 20 years since you retired, do you now know what prevented you from playing longer? For example, was it your offense or defense or just an overall lack of being “in the zone” like you were in the World Series?
BB: Aside from a chronic back injury which is no longer a problem, I had no idea where to look to repeat my performance in the World Series. The major majority of athletes are focused on the surface level of motion, as I was. Motion forms at a deep level of the mind. By the time the motion comes out, it’s already been formed, and if not formed correctly, one has a very difficult time making essential last split second adjustments.This is why athletes often commit too soon. It’s essential for an athlete to have access to deeper levels of the mind in order to play their best.
BR: Between the end of your playing career and the beginning of Perfect Mind Perfect Motion (PMPM) Sports, what did you do?
BB: Most of all, I searched for a systematic way to teach athletes how to access the zone. But, I spent time in commercial real estate, the agent business and coaching in professional baseball. One of my favorite sayings is “those who are searching, are not always lost.” That was very true of me. I knew I was given my zone experience in the World Series for a reason, and the reason was to come up with a way to teach it systematically. My partner, Steven Yellin is the one who has figured it out, and this is what we, along with my son Bryn are teaching. Had I been able to successfully continue my career for many years after the Series, I certainly would not have been searching for what I have found. So thank God, for my back injury and that I could not repeat my World Series performance!
BR: Switching gears towards PMPM Sports, how did you meet co-founder Steven Yellin?
BB: A childhood friend and neighbor of mine introduced us about five years ago. Roughly two years later, Steven taught me his program. I quickly realized he had made a discovery and that he had found the “holy grail.” We formed our company and off we went.
BR: For those who are not familiar with PMPM Sports or who have heard of it for the first time here, can you please explain the PMPM Sports‘ goal and philosophy?
BB: We teach by design what most athletes experience by chance when playing their best. Time slows down, the discriminating intellect shuts down, and the motion becomes fluid and effortless. There are processes in the brain that are occurring when this happens. We, along with some brain researchers have quantified these processes and developed a program to enable them to happen systematically.
BR: What kind of skills and drills do you use in order to accomplish these goals?
BB: We teach proprietary drills and concepts that when done correctly, allow an athlete in any sport to connect at the deepest level of mind-body coordination. There are certain laws of nature, such as water boils at 212 degrees. There are also laws of motion, and by utilizing our drills and concepts correctly, an athlete is able to align with these laws of motion and produce fluid, effortless motion along with perfect timing. An athlete can have great mechanics, but if his timing is not good, his production will not be what it can.
BR: Does PMPM Sports recruit players or do they come to you? Likewise, do you have one training facility or do you use whatever is available where the athlete is located?
BB: Players typically find us through agents or coaches. However, we are in the process of aligning with a sports facility or two, where athletes will come to us. I’m sure we will always travel to some players, but to maintain the family life and build our business model, we need to establish a location.
BR: Which baseball players (past and present) have you worked with? Who of those are you currently or have most recently worked with?
BB: Many names we can’t mention for confidentiality purposes, but to mention a few, we worked with Cardinals Minor League Player of the Year Daryl Jones, Bob Keppel of the Twins, Golfer Lee Janzen and Nick Green of the Red Sox.
BR: Is it still just you and Steven or does PMPM Sports have more instructors? Are any of them former MLB players? If so, who?
BB: My son Bryn is teaching as well.
BR: What is a realistic goal for a baseball player to achieve after working with PMPM Sports?
BB: In our test pilot with five St.Louis Cardinal Minor League hitters, the five players showed an average increase in OPS of 100.8 points. Two seasons ago, four professional hitters combined to hit 317 points higher than their previous season. Lee Janzen has shown very substantial improvement as have many others.
BR: Does PMPM Sports have any sponsors that you’d like to thank that make it easier for PMPM Sports to do what it is that you do?
BB: We are grateful for the athletes and the professional MLB and NBA organizations who have given us the opportunity to share with them this great discovery my partner Steven Yellin has made. We feel this is a significant discovery and will have a strong impact wherever it is taught. We look forward to sharing this knowledge throughout the years to come. Look for our upcoming book, Perfect Mind-Perfect, The Seven Secrets of World Class Athlete’s.”