When you’re coaching a youth team you know how important it is to keep the practices fun as well as instructional. Here are two drills that are fun and result in quick improvements in the basics.
Works with all ages but love to introduce it to young players.
Use only 2 words in a hitting drill using ‘golf-ball’ size whiffle balls.
The coach is on a knee or sitting on bucket 15 feet or so from hitter. He pitches balls to hitter. Hitter says ‘Ball’ when he sees the ball as it leaves the coach’s hand and says ‘Hit’ when they make contact with the ball.
With youngsters throw 10 balls with hitter silent, then teach them Ball-Hit and watch their contact improve dramatically.
Nerf Ball Baserunning
I use a Nerf ball to teach the younger kids (7-10) baserunning. I stand at home and throw the Nerfball to different players in the field.
Using “stop motion” techniques I slowly go through the basic baserunning options. This really helps the kids see the strategies for running.
This also helps the defensive players in seeing the “bigger picture” when fielding. And we all have fun!
NOTE: “Stop motion” is done by walking through a scenario step by step. Then when the kids have the idea I speed things up.