Baseball Drills for Youth
When searching for baseball drills for youth, it’s important to look for a variety of drills that improve players’ overall skill set to keep them from getting bored at practices while developing the necessary fundamentals of the game. These drills focus on hitting skills, and include a tee drill to improve line drives, a hand isolation drill to improve coordination and a drill using golf balls to increase concentration and reflexes.
Making Practice Fun!
When learning the rudimentary skills of baseball, the trick is to make that learning as fun as possible to keep the players’ attention from wandering. By varying the baseball drills for youth that are used at each practice, players will be able to hone a variety of skills without getting bored. Here are some excellent examples of baseball drills for youth that will keep kids coming back for more while turning them into exemplary little ball players!
Perfecting the Line Drive
The first drill uses a tee to teach youth how to consistently hit line drives. Set up a tee approximately 20 feet away from the backstop. Players perform this drill in partners: one player bats while the other feeds balls to the hitter. Tell them to visualize the spot on the backstop that they’d like to hit and aim as straight as they can. After 10 hits, the players switch positions.
If a player is unable to hit line drives consistently, try adjusting the height of the tee. Remind the batter not to aim for the underside of the ball, because that will send the ball flying too high, or the topside of the ball, as that will drive the ball into the ground.
One Hand at a Time
Here’s another hitting drill that isolates each hand for added power and coordination. This drill is also performed in partners with one player batting and the other feeding soft toss pitches to the batter. The pitcher kneels about 10 feet in front of the batter, and throws slow pitches into the batter’s strike zone.
The batter begins batting only with their stronger hand. Players are encouraged to begin this drill with a smaller bat than they usually hit with, or to choke up high on a regular bat. After 10 pitches with the strong hand the batter switches to their weaker hand for 10 more pitches, and then the two players switch positions.
By working each hand in isolation, youth baseball players are learning how to make the hands work together for a more powerful swing, while developing muscle memory that will be useful in further batting practice.
Go, Go Golf Ball!
Sometimes it’s useful to vary the size, shape, and weight of the ball when performing baseball drills for youth. This drill uses whiffle or golf balls to help train the eye to watch for the ball when batting. This drill is also performed in partners, with one player batting while the other soft tosses whiffle or golf balls into the batter’s strike zone.
The batter stands facing the backstop, hitting as many of the smaller balls as possible. As players’ reaction times improve, increase the speed of the pitches. Players should be aiming to hit line drives as often as possible in this drill.
Not only does this drill help to increase players’ concentration and reflexes when batting, it can also help to train players to hit line drives. If a player is unable to hit a successful line drive, analyze their swing. Perhaps they’re aiming for either the low or high end of the ball, which will send the ball into the ground or high up into the air. The trick is a nice, even swing that hits the center of the ball dead on.
Need More Baseball Drills For Youth?
Kenny Buford has been coaching baseball for well over two decades. You can get instant access to his championship baseball practice plans by visiting his website: Youth Baseball Drills and Coaching Tips
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|By Kenny Buford