During this blog post, I’m going to discuss a variety of softball hitting drills that are perfect for running with your players during practice. We’ll also go over some hitting tips.
Some of the following drills are great to do with a heavy bat. If you don’t have the resources to buy a heavy bat that’s already made, you can take an old normal bat, pop off the end, fill it with sand, put the end back on, and it works just as well as any specifically designed heavy bat.
Perfect Swing Drill
For this softball hitting drill, your players will use a normal bat and swing through 10 times at the same pitch, trying to feel the bat travel, working on good bat speed.
You, the coach, will want to focus on technique and ensure that good mechanics are in effect, including the short stride, the closed front foot, the good back knee drive and turn, vertical axis of rotation, still head, and great bat lag.
Using a Batting Tee During Drills
The batting tee is the best device there is for learning to have good hitting mechanics.
But often the tee is misused. Young hitters will very often tilt their head because the ball is so close to them to try to get a better look. The tilting of the head causes a tremendous loop in the swing. Your player cannot swing through the ball like she should. Her bat lag is not good.
The way to correct this is for your hitter to concentrate on a ball that’s out in front about six feet and even with the ball on the tee. She’ll keep her ball eye only on the ball out in front as she swings through the ball on the tee. She should keep her head still, causing her axis of rotation to improve along with her bat lag.
Stride Progression Drill
This softball hitting drill utilizes a stride box. The stride box is my own device that I’ve come up with because it’s portable. It’s just two 4″ x 4″s bolted together at a 90-degree angle. They’re very easy to make, and we use them all the time in the cages, at home plate, and they’re really a very, very important device in our hitting program.
What it does is it keeps our front foot from turning open too much. It keeps our stride short, and it also will help us with a reminder of keeping a firm front side in our swing.
This drill’s goal is to make sure that the hitter keeps her foot closed and a firm front side.
During the first part of it, the hitter’s foot is already down, her back knee and hip are turned, and her barrel is down in lag position. She just flips the barrel through to the ball, making sure that she stays on the plane.
Then she’ll come back, her foot is down, she’s already taken her stride, and she’ll just turn and hit. This makes her feel a firm front side.
And the last part of the drill, she’ll come back into her stance, stride into the corner of the stride box, and go through her swing. You should remind your players to work very hard to make sure the front heel is down before the back heel comes up.
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