If you’re looking for new softball practice drills, you’ve come to the right place! Here are two of my favorite drills for improving fielding skills, teamwork and communication.
Softball Practice Drill #1: Rapid Fire Double Plays
The purpose of this drill is help your middle infielders turn double plays.
How it Works:
For this drill you need a shortstop, a second baseman, and a first baseman. You also need a coach standing between home plate and the pitching mound.
The drill will begin with the coach throwing a grounder to the shortstop. As the shortstop fields the grounder, the second baseman will move over to second base, and the double play will be turned by the shortstop throwing to the second baseman and the second baseman throwing to first.
As soon as the second baseman throws to first, the coach should throw a grounder to where the second baseman is normally positioned. The second baseman must move over to field the grounder and then start the double play by throwing to the shortstop, who is covering second for the double play.
Once the shortstop throws to first, the coach should throw another grounder to where the shortstop is normally positioned.
The drill continues this way for several grounders.
The coach should make sure that the grounders are being taken with two hands and that the fielder is quickly getting the ball out of her glove and throwing to second. The player turning the double play should also catch with both hands and make a quick turn.
Though the fielders will have to range to their left or right to field the grounder, the player should make every effort to get in front of the ball.
Softball Practice Drill #2: Take The Extra Base
This drill helps teach outfielders to get the ball back into the infield quickly and it also teaches base runners to run hard on the base pads.
How it Works:
This drill is practiced with players in all nine fielding positions. There will also be a line of base runners and a coach with a bat just in front of home plate.
The coach will hit the ball (or throw the ball) somewhere in the outfield. The runner at home must try to make it to second base or even third base or home. The runner wants to keep going until there is a play at a base or at home.
The coach should mostly hit singles and the outfield should be able to throw out the runner at second. However, the coach can also hit the ball in the gaps and down the line. The coach can also hit the ball over the outfielders’ heads.
The runner will learn to run the bases by running hard down to first base. The defense will learn to get the ball back in and throw a runner out without panicking.
The coach should make sure the base runner is running hard all the way. The coach should also make sure that the outfielders are getting in front of the ball (when possible), hitting the cutoff, and making strong throws.
The coach should make sure the infielders line-up correctly (depending where the ball is hit) and that they receive the ball with two hands and tag out the runner.