I received this suggestion for [tag]youth baseball hitting drills[/tag] from Michelle.  If you’re coaching a [tag]youth baseball team[/tag], I’m sure you can use this one to help build confidence in all your players.Youth Baseball Hitting Drills

From Michelle…
This is a [tag]baseball batting drill[/tag] I used with a player who is very good at fielding and catching but was afraid of staying in the batters box for fear of getting hit.

I had him stand in the batters box with his glove on and in batting position.  When the [tag]baseball[/tag] was pitched I had him start his batting motion and then catch the ball as it crossed the plate.  Since he was very confident catching the ball no matter if it was high, low, inside or outside, it helped him realize that he could, in fact, determine where the ball was crossing the plate and would be able to get out of the way of a pitch if he needed to.

He now has a lot more confidence in the batters box because now he thinks of “catching” the ball with his bat and he has been much better at determining balls and strikes.  This drill has also been very helpful for teaching bunting.

    1 Response to "Youth Baseball Hitting Drills – Fear Free Batting Box"

    • Richard Forbus

      Hey, this is a great drill that we have used even for kids not afraid of the baseball to build their confidence in reaction time to quicker pitching. One major issue you may face in a drill like the one suggested is the kid that has trouble catching the ball. Some of the kids that have such a paralyzing fear of the baseball aren’t just having the issue in the batter’s box. This creates a problem, especially in a little league setting, due to safety concerns for the kids.

      One other drill I have used in the past on a case by case basis only is to use a chain link fence, six feet high or so, and to have the kid with the fear stand on the other side of the fence. I will go to the other side (or have a youth pitcher who can throw hard do it) and throw from a full wind up full speed at the fence.

      The goal I have for the kid I am working with is to stand in the box without moving out to see the ball hit the fence. As a part of the drill, if the ball is coming inside at them (which I will include in the drill), they are to turn, roll their uppper body downward, and touch the ground behind them with their bat.

      For kids with this issue I personally do not throw any junk at them when doing it, i.e. a curve or anything else, no matter what their age may be. the point here is to get them the confidence to track pitches into the strike zone and learn the difference in how a pitch looks that is going to strike you and one that is outside or in the strike zone.

      You can’t work on hitting until you can get them to stay in and see the pitch. I have found that a lot of these kids can hit….if a coach is pitching, if a machine is pitching, etc. They panic when a kid is throwing hard and the possibility of being hit (as they have in the past, often times many times) presents itself.

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