While coaching 9 & 10 year old little league baseball, many of my 11-players had not had much prior hitting instruction.   To get a “bang for the buck” with our limited 1 1/2 hour practice sessions, we used a 4-station approach to keep them active and get a lot of repetition.

  • It does require 3-4 adults (we used 2 baseball coaches and 1 or 2 parent volunteers), and often in our case, 2 hitting “nets”.
  • Each station runs for 5 minutes.
  • As players come in at different times to start practice, they are matched up with a “buddy” or two for stretching and throwing.   1st group to finish stretching/throwing goes to 1st hitting station, and so on.

Station 1: 2 or 3 players with a coach.   Simply work on basic hitting mechanics such as stance, bat position, and 3-step “pop-torque-swing” for lead leg stride (or replace), rotation, and swing with a balanced follow-through.   After 5 minutes group 1 goes to station 2 (2nd group comes in ; coach stays to get consistent instruction to all players) and 2nd group comes in.

Station 2: hitting from the tee.   Each player takes 5 swings from the tee hitting into net.   We have parent volunteer observing the player’s hitting techniques which they’ve observed at station 1.   Players rotate after 5 swings.   After 5 minutes group 1 goes to station 3 and is replaced by group 2.

Station 3: soft toss hitting.   Each player takes 5 swings into net.   We have a parent volunteer toss (angled from side & behind) with mix of tosses (inside toss = pull ; middle toss = up the middle ; outside toss = opposite field).   Players rotate after 5 swings.   After 5 minutes, to to station 4.

Station 4: coach pitch.   Each player takes 5 swings from home plate at normal pitching distance.   We have 2nd baseball coach pitch and observe the swing for any needed instruction learned at station 1 and developed through stations 2 and 3.   Players rotate after 5 swings.   (we have the 1st group players that have already hit “retrieve” their balls).

As the early groups complete, we’ll have the coach from station 1 get them ready for [tag]baseball fielding drills[/tag] while the later groups complete station 4 (or we’ll have them do live fielding with station 4).   We try to rotate our small groups from practice-to-practice as to who goes into station 1 first.

This keeps all players active for a 20 minute session with a good number of swings from the tee, from soft toss, and from live pitching.

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