Free Softball Practice Drills – 444 Game (4vs4vs4)

September 4, 2011 at 10:10 am | Posted in fielding | Leave a comment
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Purpose: To play an actual game with only 12 players. Having scrimmages is a good way to practice when tournament is about to start, this is a good softball coaching tip.

Procedure: Preapre a regular playing field, balls, bats, gloves Divide players into three teams of four players. Each tearn has at least one pitcher and catcher.One team is at bat. The other two take the field. Only two players play the outfield. One of the coaches can play an outfield position. Play a normal game. After the first team makes three outs, the next team is up. After they make three outs, the final team is up. Simulating real game situations is the best way to prepare for competition, the 444 game is a great way to do so. One coach calls balls and strikes behind the pitcher. Each team should have a catcher. If not, stealing might have to be suspended, To keep the game moving at a fast pace, limit each team to one time through its lineup four at-bats. To familiarize players with starting behind the count, start each player off with two strikes (0-2). This game is a great opportunity to try players at different positions.

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Fun Softball Drills – King Cone

May 24, 2011 at 2:38 am | Posted in defense | Leave a comment
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Purpose:  This is a fun game where kids learn about throwing and catching. Good passing of the ball is an element of the tag play. Game situations should be taught when coaching softball.

Procedure: The team needs four bases, four cones, and soccer ball (bat, gloves, and regulation ball are optional). Make two teams. Place a cone on the outside corner of each base including one on top of home plate. Put a fielder at each base (total of three) along  with a pitcher and catcher. Everyone else stands wherever they want. The batting team has one kicker at a time. A soccerball is rolled at the cone near home plate. After a kick this person sprints around the bases. While this is going on, the ball must be retrieved and passed successfully to the people at first, second, third, and then home. After each catch, the fielder must knock down his/her cone before throwing to the next base.

Outs include the following: 1] A pitched ball which hits the cone at home plate, 2} a ball caught in the air by a fielder, 3) the batter knocking down a cone, or 4) two foul balls in a row. A run is scored if the barter reaches home plate before the ball gets there. Play three outs per inning, or have each player on a team get a turn at bat. For older kids, use a bat, regulation ball, and gloves. After a hit, the ball must be thrown around the infield in similar fashion. This time, after a catch the fielder must knock the cone over in a tag play.

Softball Throwing Drills – Biathlon

May 4, 2011 at 11:38 am | Posted in Throwing | Leave a comment
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Purpose: Just as in the Winter Olympic sport of target challenges and cross-country skiing, this game combines the talents of throwing and running. The object is to throw balls to designated spots while running against the clock. It is important to put fun drills in  softball coaching so players can enjoy while working hard.

Procedure: Stop watch, balls, gloves and bases. Scatter balls feme for each person at the following areas: pitching mound, home plate, first base, second base, third base, shortstop, left field, center field, and right field. Have the instructors or extra players (with gloves on) at home plate, second base, third base, and first base.

At the signal the player runs from each position on the diamond in successive order 1 thru 9: 1 (mound), 2 (plate), 3 (first base), etc. At Number 1, throw to the catcher. At Number 2, throw to second base. At Number 3, throw to third base. At Numbers 4-5-6, throw to first base. At Number 7, throw to home plate. At Number 8, throw to second base. And at Number 9, throw to third base.

Younger kids can throw to second base from the outfield positions. Time limits can vary for the age groups. Make sure the kids run or jog from station to station. An umpire tallies the scores, and has the right to award points even after errors by a receiver. No points are allowed for balls which roll to the target, or draw the receivers away from the bag. Scoring includes.

3 points: Perfect throw to the receiver.

2 points: Throw which is bounced, picked, or scooped by the receiver.

1 point: Throw which moves the receiver left or right of the base.

 

 

Free Softball Drills – Opposite Angle Drill

August 27, 2010 at 11:13 am | Posted in Bunting | Leave a comment
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Purpose: To develop the hitter’s bunting technique. Softball hitting must include bunting to have an over-all game.

Procedure:  The team will need softballs, a bat, and two helmets. A marker should be placed near each base line approximately ten feet apart. The batter assumes a good hitting stance. A feeder then stands approximately fifteen feet away from the batter to overhand toss the ball to the hitter. The hitter should pivot on her back leg as the feeder raises her arm to throw the ball. As the batter pivots, she should square her body to the feeder and slide her top hand down the bat to the midpoint of the barrel. The hitter should flex her knees and get into position to bunt the ball. To bunt the ball down the third-base line, the right-handed hitter should pull his left hand to her navel. To bunt the ball down the first base line, the right-handed hitter should push her left hand away from her navel.

The batter should catch the ball with her bat,rather than punch at the ball. The batter should never bunt the ball to the feeder. The batter should practice bunting with only her top hand on the bat, so that she can learn how to catch the ball with the barrel of her bat. The batter should never drop the head of the bat below her hands when bunting. rather, she should bend her knees to bunt a low pitch.

Free Softball Drills – Dive-Ball Drill

August 17, 2010 at 8:38 am | Posted in defense, fielding | Leave a comment
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Purpose: To develop the confidence to leave the feet, or dive, when finding a hard-hit ball on the ground. One good softball tip is just to “choose now”

Procedure: Prepare a bucket of softballs, and have some gloves. Divide the team into two or three groups, depending on the number of available coaches. The coach calls out the first player, who stands 10 to 20 feet from the coach, facing him.The coach takes a ball from the bucket, then yells, “Left.”  The player moves toward the left, and the coach leads him with the ball so that the player must dive for it. If the player catches the ball, he rolls it back to the coach. Knocking down the ball or stopping it with his body is as good as a catch. The player should kick aside any balls in the active “diving” area. The coach then yells, “Right” The player moves to his right. The coach leads the player with the ball so that he must dive to catch or stop the ball. Each player gets three or four turns before the next player’s turn.

The player’s main objective is to stop the ball and keep it in front of her instead of worrying about making a spectacular catch. Players should start off in the ready position Teach players to keep their gloves open as they run to make a backhanded catch. Teach players to run toward the ball to make a catch rather than reaching outward diving for it. A dive should always be a player’s last resort. As the players progress, add a player at first base, and instruct the fielders to throw to first after making a diving stop.

Begin this drill with the players kneeling, diving for the ball from their knees. This variation trains players how to dive even if they aren’t in the ready position.

Softball Drills – Short Hop Drill

April 9, 2010 at 8:33 am | Posted in fielding | Leave a comment
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Purpose:To develop proper technique for fielding short hops. Repetition of training will help master a certain skill. Building confidence through perfecting a skill will help in mental training as well

Procedure: You will need one softball per player, gloves, and caps. Divide the team into pairs. Players form two lines 10 to 20 feet apart with pairs positioned across from each other. Everyone kneels on two knees. There should be at least five feet between each player in line.When the coach yells, “Throw.” the players bounce their balls to their partners, who field them on one hop.Repeat the drill until the predetermined time is up. Next, each player puts his cap approximately three feet in front of her. On the “go” command the players try to hit their partners’ caps with the balls. The ball should arrive after one hop.

Fielding short hops is one of the most difficult concepts for youth players to master. This drill accustoms players to the short hop. Practicing in the kneeling position forces players to focus on the bouncing ball. In the traditional upright set position, players tend to turn their heads before the ball reaches the glove. Players should keep their eyes on the ball just as they would when practicing catching fly balls short-Hop drill. The players must ‘look the ball” into their gloves.

Variation

Two players stand facing each other and take turns throwing short hops to one another. Players earn points for throwing beyond the receiver’s reach or for missing the ball. The first player to reach five points loses the game.


Fastpitch Softball Drills – Pitcher Fielding a Bunt

November 20, 2009 at 2:24 am | Posted in Bunting, fielding | Leave a comment
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Purpose: This fastpitch softball drill familiarize the pitcher with coming off the pitcher’s mound after the windup to field a hunted or hit softball in front of the home-plate area

Procedure: Equipment required are A ball, a bat, gloves. Set up the drill with a pitcher, catcher, infielders, and bat¬ter .The pitcher throws the ball, and the batter bunts it toward third base. The pitcher fields the ball in what is scmetimes called “no man’s land.” Mo man’s land is the area between the pitcher, the catcher, and the third baseman. Sometimes, when the ball is bunted into this area, it is too far from the catcher and third baseman for them to field it easily, so the pitcher has the best play.

Softball Hitting Drills: Mini Heat Drill

November 6, 2009 at 1:51 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Purpose: This softball hitting drill is to develop the hitter’s bat speed

Procedure: Equipment required are A protective screen, a crate of whiffle golf balls; a wooden broom handle cut to the length of a bat and a batting cage. A feeder sits on a chair behind a protective screen. The hitter assumes a batting stance approximately fifteen feet away. The feeder throws pitches to each of the batter’s three hit ting zones. The batter should attempt to hit the thrown ball. The hitter should quickly cock his wrists in order to make solid contact with the ball. The drill can be done with the hitter using a regulation bat against either a whiffle golf ball or a softball.

Softball Hitting Drills – Fence Drill

November 6, 2009 at 1:50 am | Posted in Hitting | Leave a comment
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Purpose: To improve the Hitter’s technique so that his front arm doesn’t exit outward during the swing

Procedure: A player stands facing the fence. To measure the appropriate distance the fence, he touches the barrel of his bat to the fence and holds it parallel the ground with the knob of the bat touching his navel .The player should remember this distance from the fence and assume a hitting stance. He should move through five components of an effective hitting technique. If the player’s bat hits the fence is extending his front arm which is a technique flaw. The player should continue softball hitting drill until he develops the proper technique of keeping his front elbow bent and hands Close to his body as he swings at an imaginary ball.

Softball Hitting Drills – Color Coded Hitting

October 30, 2009 at 12:45 am | Posted in Hitting | Leave a comment
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Purpose: Improve hand-eye coordination and quicken reaction time in order to consistently hit a variety of pitches.

Procedure: Equipments that are required are Bats, softballs, pitching machine and L-screen, white and yellow dimpled balls and white, yellow and red tennis balls. As a warm up a pitcher flips a ball from each hand at the same time and instructs the batter to hit one of the two balls. For example, “High” for the high pitches, or Low for the low pitch. Another option is to use two different colored balls with the batter instructed to hit one or the other. Advanced hitters can hit at balls numbered from 1 to 3 with the goal of calling out the number on the ball before contact. For the main drill, gather up three different colored tennis balls: white, yellow and red. Set up a close range batting practice session or short toss drill from
behind a screen. The batter should practice a different hit according to the color of the ball White means bunt (e.g. safe color). Yellow means curveball (e.g. caution), so the hitter should try and stay back and hit the ball the other way. Red means fastball (e.g. dead red) so sit back and rip! For further practice, perform a softball hitting drill with the pitching machine using white and yellow dimpled balls. Try hitting the white one and bunting the yellow, Or hit-and-run the white, and hit to the right side for the yellow. But stress the importance of picking the ball up as early as possible. These exercises work on improving hand-eye coordination through concentration from release to contact and the actual grip of the ball at the pitcher’s “L” focus upon release. Remember: Hitters shouldn’t guess. These drills develop instinct and train the hands to react quickly and efficiently.

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