The key with defense is mastering the fundamentals, and mastering the mechanics of both fielding and throwing. Today, I am sharing a fantastic warm-up throwing progression drill that you can implement into your practice plan, to ensure that your players know and execute the proper mechanics and fundamentals.
Throwing Progression Drill for Softball Defense
The first thing fundamental you want to make sure is happening, is that the wrist snap is palm down.
Bring the players down on one knee, because all we’re going to focus on is warming up the upper body to get ready to throw without using our legs. They’ve got their glove knee out in front, and the toe is slightly turned inward so they don’t open up their hips too soon. Remember if the toe points out, the hips will also be open. So the toe is slightly closed. This is a good position to warm up the upper body.
Next, with the glove arm, the player is going to hold their throwing elbow. And all they’re going to work on is wrist snap, finishing palm down. You’ll notice that she’s not throwing it with her forearm, she’s snapping it with her wrist.
Next, you’re going to move the throwing progression now a little bit further out to make it more realistic. And now they’re going to start warming up their actual throw. Start at about 40 feet, and then eventually get to 60 feet and then a game-like throw.
Players should keep their glove side in when they’re throwing. If you are using this to warmup, this is a time where you should really focus on hitting the target. How many times are you out there and you’re just talking, and you’re not really aiming at your target? If you want to master your accuracy, this is the time to do it. So when you get out there with your partner, see who can go 25 for 25 in hitting strikes to each other. You’ll be amazed at how difficult it is.
You should also see your players stepping towards the target and remaining balanced throughout the entire throw, with a nice, high elbow, good wrist snap position and follow through. You should also see them release that back hip or back foot, and after she releases, the back foot should come forward. Look for shoelaces facing down on the back foot.
The last step of this throwing progression is to work on being able to glove it and throw as quickly as possible, maintaining the proper mechanics of catching and throwing.
Looking for more awesome throwing progression drill tips? Then be sure to check out Championship Coach Sue Enquist’s other Softball Coaching Videos! Sue will share some great tips and softball throwing, hitting and much more! And don’t forget to Like Us on Facebook, where we share more great drills, tips and suggestions.