Taylor Hooton Foundation > Hoot’s Corner > Podcasts > Episode 41: Breaking Barriers for Women in Sport – Rachel Balkovec
April 20, 2021
Episode 41: Breaking Barriers for Women in Sport – Rachel Balkovec

The ALL ME® Podcast

Breaking Barriers for Women in Sports – Rachel Balkovec

I’m a big believer in making the impossible possible and today’s podcast is about overcoming obstacles and breaking barriers, especially in sports. There’s nothing more motivating than a great story, especially when it comes to hard work, dedication, and commitment and today’s guest will discuss the challenges that she went through that lead to opportunity.

My guest today is Rachel Balkovec and Rachel and I will discuss how she overcame obstacles to become the first full-time female strength and conditioning as well as hitting coach in Major League Baseball. We will discuss her path to success, what she had to overcome, along with how she’s now working to mentor young women through a mentorship program.

About Rachel Balkovec

Rachel has just entered her first year as a minor league hitting coach with the New York Yankees. She is the first woman to hold that title in the history of professional baseball and is joining 3 other women that will be in uniform this season in various roles.  She joined the Yankees after completing her second master’s degree in biomechanics and statistics in the Netherlands. While in Amsterdam, she served as an assistant hitting coach for the Netherlands national softball and baseball programs and went on to complete her research at the world leading baseball performance research facility in Seattle, Driveline Baseball.

Previously, she was in several roles with the Houston Astros’ strength and conditioning department.  She completed the 2018 season with their AA affiliate, Corpus Christi Hooks and served as the Latin American Coordinator in her first 2 years with the organization.  The first time she made history in professional baseball was in 2014 when she was hired as the first full time female strength and conditioning coach in the MLB in the role of Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coordinator for the St. Louis Cardinals. She also worked in apprenticeship roles for Louisiana State University, The Chicago White Sox, Arizona State University, Los Tigres Del Licey Beisbol and EXOS early in her career.  The Omaha native is a former NCAA Division I softball catcher and has special interest in organizational culture and behavioral psychology in relation to coaching. She has an undergraduate degree in Exercise Science, a master’s degree in Sport Administration from LSU.

Resource Links

Rachel’s Social Media Links

  • Twitter – @_rachelbalkovec
  • Instagram – rachel.balkovec

Did You Know?

  • The Taylor Hooton Foundation has an education program on Nutrition and Dietary Supplement Safety
  • Up to 25% of Dietary Supplements are contaminated with illegal drugs and banned substances.

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