PRACTICE 4   Focus: Agility, Catching, Throwing, Base Running, Hitting

 

Agility Warm Up  (10 Min)

  • This agility warm up is performed with their glove tucked

  • Player starts at the top and shuffles to their left or right

  • Once outside the cone, player back pedals to the second cone

  • Once past, player drop steps and sprints to the centered cone

  • They immediately go to the ladder as described below

  • Repeat and alternate shuffle directions

  • Stationary feeds to a player with no glove

  • Have player get into a proper fielding position and roll balls directly to them so their feet can stay stationary

  • Focus is on getting the player into the proper fielding position and reaching out for the ball with their glove hand palm facing the ball and throwing hand over the glove hand

Throwing  (10 Min)
 
  • Player’s throw to coaches
  • Start with wrist snaps on the knees
    • Glove knee up, throwing hand knee down
    • Throwing arm is at 90 degree
    • Glove hand supports throwing elbow underneath
    • With ball in hand, wrist starts forward, comes back, and forward to snap
    • Arm does not move, just the wrist
  • Throwing from the knee
  • Start with glove shoulder facing target
  • Glove to ear, ball separation behind throwing shoulder, elbow up
  • On the throw, glove is tucked, wrist is snapped, throwing hand finished at opposite pocket
  • Attempt to get the player’s to go from shoulder to shoulder with their throws
  • Throwing from the feet in an athletic position  
  • Utilize same mechanics mentioned above
  • Targets can be used for fun, i.e. Hula Hoops or Buckets
  • Start close and slowly move back.
  • Can add a competition for fun having the players attempt to throw through a hula hoop at various distances starting close and slowly moving back

Catching  (10 Min)

  • Start by having the coaches toss players a tennis ball up close with no glove

    • Have them start in a stationary athletic position with the legs flexed giving a target with both hands out front​

    • Feed them the ball and have them catch it with their glove hand with their throwing hand covering up after the catch

    • Feed them balls from your knee in different areas encouraging the use of their legs working up and down (but still stationary)

    • If the ball is above their knee have them catch it finger tips up using their legs, below the knees catch finger tips down

    • Have 3-4 lines and feed them 3 balls each and rotate

  • Forehands/Backhands with tennis ball without the glove
    • Coaches start close and lightly underhand toss balls to the various 9 catching zones
    • In a stationary position, player’s move their catching hand to the ball finger tips up/finger tips down
    • The focus isn’t on catching the ball, but to get to the ball the correct way
    • Slowly move back as the players get comfortable with getting to the ball
  • Now with the glove, have the player get athletic by bending at the knees and having the feet outside the shoulders
    • The coach will again feed 3 balls each from a close distance on their knee and rotate
    • The players will give a target using two hands
    • Focus on having them catch the ball finger tips up or finger tips down in a stationary position

Base Running  (15 Min)

 

Hitting  (30 Min)

  • Tee
    • The player sets up in an athletic stance
    • Feet positioned straight or slightly inward with weight on the inside
    • Feet are positioned just outside the shoulders with equal weight on each
    • Have the player just get to contact for 5-7 reps 
      • At this point, the back foot and belly button should be pointed to the contact point​
      • The back arm should be close to a 90 degree angle
    • Next, have the player get through contact and to extension for 5-7 reps 
      • Have the player focus on making contact with the inside of the ball which forces the knob to the ball
      • At extension, the back shoulder should be underneath the chin which is down ​ 
      • At extension, the barrel of the bat should be facing the pitcher
    • Move the tee to the middle contact point and have the player take a full swing
    • Make necessary adjustments to a player’s swing
    • Hitting Drill
      • Set up the tee for a middle contact swing​
      • Set up two cones 10-12 feet in front that are spread 10 feet apart
      • Have the players take swings trying to hit the ball over and inside the two cones

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