Baseball Hitting Drills to Improve Swing Control
A good hitter can only become better through this series of repetitious drills that aim to hone and train hitting skills. To improve swing control and reflexes when hitting use these baseball hitting drills, which include hitting balls other than baseballs, aiming for the correct colored ball and hitting against a wall at an imaginary field."
The Qualities of a Good Hitter
To be an idea hitter in baseball, a player must achieve a balance of strength, coordination, control and determination. While these qualities are second nature to some players, both gifted and inexperienced players will benefit from baseball hitting drills. Before attempting any baseball hitting drills, make sure players are batting with the proper bat. Batting with an over heavy bat can have negative effects on the trajectory of the swing. It is imperative that batters learn to spot the strike zone so they don’t swing at bad pitches. When swinging, swing slightly downward to stay on top of the ball and avoid over-cutting. Batting stance is also important when practicing hitting. Always keep both the front shoulder and the chin tucked in towards the body. Hands should be back and the head should be pointing towards the pitcher so that both eyes can focus on the oncoming pitch. Finally, to put that added spring into the hitter’s step, they should always be on the balls of their feet. Once the stance has been perfected, it’s time to start on the baseball hitting drills!
Hitting soccer balls and colored balls
This drill, called the Power Bat Drill, helps hitters develop power in their swing by connecting with a heavier ball. By increasing the amount of force necessary at the point of contact, the hitter will develop a more powerful swing. To begin, slide a plunger handle-first into a batting tee. Place either a flattened soccer ball or basketball in the rubber cupped part of the plunger and swing normally at the ball. The goal for this drill is to hit the heavier ball without decelerating the swing at the point of impact. Concentrate on the mechanics of the swing and the level of deceleration will decrease. The next hitting drill, known as the colored ball drill, aims to sharpen a player’s mind and improve reaction times at the plate. This drill requires a number of different colored balls which can either be bought or painted. To begin, place the colored balls in a bucket. The pitcher carefully reaches into the bucket and selects a ball without allowing the batter to see the color of the ball. Before releasing the pitch, the batter calls out the name of a color. The batter may only swing at the pitch if it matches the color of ball called by the pitcher.
Finally, here’s a baseball hitting drill called the Wall Ball drill that involves a large number of players at once, and can be played in a more competitive manner to teach players to be aggressive when hitting. Divide the team into groups of 3. One team plays defense while the other bats using foam or wiffle balls. The goal of the game is to hit balls towards a wall where different sections correspond with different types of hits. The wall must have a top line that represents the "out" zone. If the ball touches the wall above the line, it is considered an out. If the ball hits the wall below the line without touching the ground, it is counted as one point for the batting team. If the ball touches the ground first before hitting the wall, it is not counted as a point but the offensive team continues to bat. Balls that are caught by the defense before touching the ground or wall are considered outs, as are pop-ups, foul balls and missed swings. Finally, to keep game play moving quickly, bats are not to touch the ground. After the batting team gets three outs, they switch sides, and the first team to ten points wins.
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| By Kenny Buford