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little league training drills – little league training drills – baseball-humour

little league training drills
Training drills for Little League baseball players are designed to develop fundamental skills while keeping sessions engaging and age-appropriate. These drills focus on aspects such as hitting, fielding, throwing, base running, and overall coordination. Here are some effective drills tailored for Little League players:

Hitting Drills

  1. Tee Work:
    • Purpose: Develops proper swing mechanics, hand-eye coordination, and consistency in contact.
    • Setup: Place a batting tee at the appropriate height for each player’s stance.
    • Drill: Players take swings focusing on hitting the ball squarely and driving it to different areas of the field.
  2. Soft Toss:
    • Purpose: Simulates a live pitching motion and helps players work on timing and hand-eye coordination.
    • Setup: A coach or partner tosses underhand pitches from the side.
    • Drill: Players practice their swing, aiming to make solid contact with the pitched ball.
  3. Front Toss:
    • Purpose: Builds confidence in hitting while facing a live pitching motion.
    • Setup: Coach or partner stands in front of the hitter and tosses balls from a short distance.
    • Drill: Players focus on timing and driving the ball with proper mechanics.

Fielding Drills

  1. Ground Ball Drill:
    • Purpose: Improves fielding technique, footwork, and glove-hand coordination.
    • Setup: Coach hits ground balls or uses a fungo bat to hit grounders to players.
    • Drill: Players field the ball, focusing on staying low, using proper glove technique, and making accurate throws to a designated target.
  2. Fly Ball Drill:
    • Purpose: Develops tracking skills, communication among players, and catching technique.
    • Setup: Coach or partner hits fly balls to outfielders or infielders.
    • Drill: Players call for the ball, track its trajectory, and make catches using proper mechanics (two-handed catch for younger players).

Throwing Drills

  1. Long Toss:
    • Purpose: Builds arm strength, improves accuracy, and develops proper throwing mechanics.
    • Setup: Players pair up and gradually increase the distance between them as they throw back and forth.
    • Drill: Players focus on using a crow-hop or step-through motion, aiming for a target with each throw.
  2. Accuracy Throw:
    • Purpose: Enhances throwing accuracy and reinforces proper arm action.
    • Setup: Set up targets (e.g., buckets, cones) at various distances.
    • Drill: Players throw to hit the target consistently, adjusting their mechanics as needed to improve accuracy.

Base Running Drills

  1. Base Running Circuit:
    • Purpose: Develops speed, agility, and base running technique.
    • Setup: Create a circuit with bases or cones set up in a diamond shape.
    • Drill: Players practice sprinting from base to base, rounding corners, sliding (if applicable), and reacting to signals from coaches.
  2. Lead-off and Sliding Practice:
    • Purpose: Teaches proper lead-off technique and sliding fundamentals.
    • Setup: Use a designated area on the base paths with a base and safe sliding surface.
    • Drill: Players practice taking leads, timing their return to the base, and executing proper slides (front or hook slide) under the guidance of coaches.

Agility and Coordination Drills

  1. Agility Ladder Drills:
    • Purpose: Improves footwork, agility, and overall coordination.
    • Setup: Lay out an agility ladder on the ground or use markers for footwork drills.
    • Drill: Players perform various footwork patterns (e.g., in-out, side-to-side) through the ladder quickly and accurately.
  2. Catching Pop-ups:
    • Purpose: Enhances hand-eye coordination, tracking skills, and confidence in catching fly balls.
    • Setup: Use a pop-up machine or have coaches hit pop-ups with a fungo bat.
    • Drill: Players practice judging the trajectory of the ball, calling for it, and making catches using proper mechanics (two hands for younger players).

Tips for Conducting Effective Drills

  • Keep it Fun: Incorporate games, challenges, and rewards to keep players engaged and motivated.
  • Emphasize Fundamentals: Focus on proper technique and mechanics from the start to build a strong foundation.
  • Rotate Stations: Use stations or circuits to rotate players through different drills, maximizing practice time and variety.
  • Provide Feedback: Offer constructive feedback and encouragement to help players improve their skills and confidence.

By incorporating these drills into Little League practices, coaches can help players develop essential baseball skills in a structured and enjoyable manner, fostering growth and enjoyment of the game.

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