Winning & Losinglook Behind The Curtain At 10u Baseball
For 10u baseball, the players are beginning to play the gameof baseball a little better. With that the parents seem to automatically thinkevery game is the World Series, life and death and nothing matters except thescore board.
Hey, I am true American too and I like to win just as much as the nextguy. But, you have it all wrong if you put winning as the only measuring stick.
What if you have a youth baseball coach that tells the players to not swing the bat and try to get a walk. It is likely at this age your team will win more that they lose using this approach.
Meanwhile, your kid is getting much closer to exiting baseball. Oh yes, we sure won a bunch of games! But, what did we gain or lose along the way?
Nobody can hit the ball. And if you can’t hit the ball…well things don’t usually work out too well for anybody.
Look behind the curtain. The immediate gratification of winning a ball game may be deceiving.
Catching On To The Gamestarting To Figure It Out
Although far from perfect and polished the 10u baseballplayers are starting to transform and show a little more consistency in theirskills. 10u baseball players are now more able to perform baseball skills thatyou have shown them how to do.
Their response to coaching, teaching and instructionis more immediate than the 8u baseball player. We start to see some fruits ofour labors. Some good results start to emerge in many young ballplayers.
There Is Another Waythe View From 20000 Feet
Coaching: In the 10U baseball coaching we still see the problem oflack of proper training for our coaches. When we turn loose our volunteer dadcoaches with little if any training and instruction on how to coach baseball weare in for major problems.
- Are you aware there is a more appropriate approach to youth baseball than the major league baseball model?
- Do you think the traditional approach to youth baseball is in the best interests of youth ballplayers?
- Is our current system the best model to develop ballplayers?
- Have you ever stopped to look at our youth baseball model from 20,000 feet? What does it look like? Are we providing a platform for players to build skills and fundamentals?
10u baseball coaches and baseball parents are onlygoing to revert back to what they know or are going to imitate their peercoaches. Coaches will gravitate to the approach seen in majorleague professional sports leagues.
That is the only system they know. No onehas shown them any other way. Often baseball coaches at this level have onething in mind.
What is the number one thing on the mind of most youth league baseball coaches and parents?
When we donot teach 10u baseball coaches and others any other way what else do we expect?
Read Also: Mens Size 12 Baseball Cleats
Station Youth Baseball Practice Plan
While coaching 9 & 10 year old little league baseball, many of my 11-players had not had much prior hitting instruction. To get a bang for the buck with our limited 1 1/2 hour practice sessions, we used a 4-station approach to keep them active and get a lot of repetition.
- It does require 3-4 adults , and often in our case, 2 hitting nets.
- Each station runs for 5 minutes.
- As players come in at different times to start practice, they are matched up with a buddy or two for stretching and throwing. 1st group to finish stretching/throwing goes to 1st hitting station, and so on.
Station 1: 2 or 3 players with a coach. Simply work on basic hitting mechanics such as stance, bat position, and 3-step pop-torque-swing for lead leg stride , rotation, and swing with a balanced follow-through. After 5 minutes group 1 goes to station 2 and 2nd group comes in.
Station 2: hitting from the tee. Each player takes 5 swings from the tee hitting into net. We have parent volunteer observing the players hitting techniques which theyve observed at station 1. Players rotate after 5 swings. After 5 minutes group 1 goes to station 3 and is replaced by group 2.
Station 3: soft toss hitting. Each player takes 5 swings into net. We have a parent volunteer toss with mix of tosses . Players rotate after 5 swings. After 5 minutes, to to station 4.
Rain Wet Day Practice
Make every effort to avoid cancelling practices unless there are extreme circumstances. Scout out your neighborhood to identify covered areas this includes 10 wide covered walkways at buildings such as schools, etc. A productive practice can be run using a covered walkway. Most, if not all, of the activities below and be run on a concrete surface in a school yard. As you go through the list you will notice that few practice activities require good weather, a field or a diamond.
Make it clear to parents that you have a rain day plan and that you have no plans of cancelling practices.
Also Check: Nike Dri Fit Baseball Shirts
Baseball Drills For 12 Year Olds +
Objective: This is a much more advanced variation of the dry swing drill. The drill aims to improve technique and power output.
Bryce Harper Drill
Objective: This drill will encourage your players to activate their hips when swinging allowing them to have a wider range of hits in their toolbox.
Hitting Net Drills
Objective: This style of drill is essentially a lot like hitting H.OR.S.E, however theyre much more suited to individuals and encourage older youth players to train their hitting technique independently.
Objective: This hitting game is great to get your batters focussed on hitting successfully and consistently.
To set this drill up youll need a hitting screen and some markers. Balls are pitched from behind the screen and each time the batter makes a successful hit they will be able to progress to the next marker which is placed slightly further away. If they miss, theyll need to move back to the previous marker.
Objective: This drill is all about improving accuracy. When youngsters start out, they tend to swing with the sole aim of hitting the ball. As they develop and get older, they need to develop their accuracy in order to exploit weak spots in the oppositions field.
Left or Right?
3 Infield Drills
Receiving And Pitch Framing Drills For Catchers
Good framing can alter the course of a ballgame, because having the ability to get that questionable outside pitch called for a third strike is a momentum changer. The best catchers in Major League Baseball can steal strikes at any point in time, so its important to help your catchers start to develop this skill.
To help with this, start saving the plastic lids from to-go containers . These are great tools for teaching how to frame pitches.
With your catchers in full gear, throw these lids at them like theyre little frisbees. The more they catch, the better. Theyre not the easiest to catch at first, but over time they become easier to handle.
This drill teaches catchers how to let the ball travel and be able to stick it where its thrown.
Letting the ball travel means allowing the ball to come to you behind the plate as a catcher, you want to receive the ball without reaching forward for it.
By teaching your players to let the ball travel and stick it, you will find your team stealing a lot more strikes. Atlanta Braves catcher Tyler Flowers is one of the best defensive catchers in the MLB, and this video helps dive into more of the philosophy of a strong receiving catcher.
Another simple and effective way to help your catchers become better at receiving, blocking and framing is to have them catch bullpens over and over again. These are their chances to work with the pitching staff and understand how each pitchers arsenal moves.
Also Check: Best Hitting Drills For Youth Baseball
Tips When Coaching Youth Players
Before we head further, let me give you one solid bit of advice. Never for one second think that only your players have to work on themselves. You, as a coach, need to develop with them and be a total guiding light for them. Youths around the age of 9 to 12 respond well to someone they view as a role model.
So, to be a successful and effective coach, you have to become their role model and lead by example. Here are a couple of tips that can help you become a better coach for your youngsters.
Batting Tee Drill For Hitting Inside Pitches
For hitting an inside pitch, you want your hands to be tight on your body. It is typically a hit for which you will need to master load and unleash it when the ball comes in contact.
If you are right-handed, try pulling the baseball on to your left side. If your left hand is the dominant hand, then you will have to do the exact opposite, i.e., get the ball o to the right side.
In the case of many fielders, they do the inside-out tactics on getting jammed. This will cause the ball to go to the other end in a feeble manner. If you can pull in at the right moment, using the correct techniques, then your swing will be laden with a better punch, causing the ball to go farther.
Setup: Place the front foot slightly ahead of the tee post. Move a tad closer, such that when you face an inward pitch, you hit the baseball with the thickest part of your bat.
For playing an inward pitch, you will first have to take your stance, and practice swinging in the air. Train yourself in a way that the ball contacts the thickest part of your barrel. For this end, swing in a way so that the ball placed on the batting tee always comes in contact with the barrel’s thick part when you hit it.
However, always remember, if your barrel is very close to your hand, it might lead to a foul tip, or the ball might go off as a weak ground ball.
Recommended Reading: Fantasy Baseball Who To Start
Tee Ball Vs Coach Pitch
A quick word on Coach Pitch before we move onto each age group
As we already know, Tee Ball is an adapted variation of the game taught to younger players to help them develop their baseball skills. It removes the difficulty of pitching freehand to players and allows younger players to focus and get used to making a connection with the ball first by using a batting tee.
Coach pitch is used with age groups usually under 9 years old with an overlap between ages 7 and possible overlap between 9-10 years old depending on the skills level of your young budding star.
Coach pitch involves the coach pitching the ball to the player. Now, its worth mentioning coach pitch isnt easy.
So, while you may introduce your 7 year old baseball players to coach pitch at some point within your practices, it generally recommended you dont use coach pitch until your players have had at least 1 years experience with tee ball.
Heres the age groups in a little more detail
How The Drill Works:
Coaches should have a stopwatch to time the players for completing the obstacle course, starting as soon as the player makes contact off the tee and stopping once the player touches home.
Don’t Miss: Mid-cut 4040v5 Tpu Baseball Cleat
The Hitting Vault Is The Most Popular Most Trusted And Highest Rated Online Hitting Community
It was created to teach athletes how to move their body to unlock their most powerful swing. Its designed to help coaches get optimal results from their athletes. Join and get access to over 100+ exclusive videos for members and step-by-step instruction so youll know exactly what to do next to unlock your power at the plate.
Final Thoughts On These Baseball Drills For 8 Year Olds
There are many other baseball drills for 8 year olds you can try, but at this age you need to keep it simple while you also make it fun.
The best baseball drills for 8 year olds dont just improve skills. They also encourage the kids to love the game.
Ive personally tried these drills with one of my kids at this age and its gone exceptionally well. We dont spend hours a day on it.
It takes maybe 30 minutes and thats plenty for this age group.
Read Also: Wool Baseball Caps For Men
Baseball Drills For 10 Year Olds +
Band Assisted Drill
Objective: To improve posture and encourage correct weight distribution when hitting.
Using a gym band, tied to a fence or a post, placed around your hitters waist, practice swinging. The band will actively encourage your hitter to stay in the correct position. You can begin with dry swings and progress to a batting tee and eventually live balls.
Objective: This drill is about training your stride when hitting. It will allow players to actively load their stride and improve hitting power.
The drill involves a batting tee and involves adjusting the hitters stride in order to calculate where the loaded front foot should be landing during the swing. Check out the YouTube video for detailed instruction.
Objective: This is a fun drill which aims to improve hitting power and accuracy as well as reaction speed. It involves two players, two tees and a hitting net.
Two players must line up at their respective tees and another player or the coach will shout a trigger word to signal that the players should hit the ball. The first to hit the net wins.
Coach Rolls To Pick Ups
Objective: This drill aims to improve fielding technique for grounders and develop lower back conditioning and increase stamina.
Triangle Target Throws
Objective: The aim of this drill is to improve your fielders ability to make accurate throws over a longer distance.
Pitching Stride Drill
High-Five Pitching Drill
Tips For Youth Baseball Team Tryouts
- Have the assistant coaches run the drills so the head coach can evaluate.
- Use a pitching machine if possible to deliver consistent pitches.
- Coaching a player during tryouts may give insight into their coachability and interest in being a good player.
- If possible, take video of the tryout. It could be helpful afterwards to review how a player did on a specific baseball drill.
- Determine evaluation process ahead of time so all coaches evaluate consistently.
- Utilize a batting cage
Read Also: Back Workouts For Baseball Players
How To Improve Your 7 Year Olds Hitting Skills
Start with easy-to-adapt batting drills first and keep multiple reps for each drill in their training chart. Split ball underhand, Bottle-Cap, and String drills are fundamental but helpful to reshape a kids batting skills to the next level. Ive shared a detailed guide on these above. You can also check out essentialbaseball drills for 10 years old players.
Bonus Video: Pitching Velocity Myths
I created an in-depth video on factors that produce pitching velocity, and common myths around them. Its definitely worth your time to check out.
Youth pitchers need lots of structure and instruction, but they also need to be doing the right things in the right doses. Drills are great, but there is more to it than just drills and its important to know where pitching mechanics, drills and velocity intersect.
Be sure to for more great pitching videos on velocity, mechanics, mindset and much more.
Read Also: New Era Men’s Baseball Hats
Double Barrel Fielding Drill
After the short hop drill is completed, infielders should break into a double barrel infield. This alignment requires two coaches . Players will field ground balls for a total of 15 minutes, following the template below:
- Round 1: 5-3, 6-4-3 and 4-6-3
In this round, the third basemen are throwing across the field to first, so the second basemen and shortstops will field grounders and work on their feeds and footwork to turn a double play without actually finishing.
- Round 2: 5-4-3, 6-2
During this round, the second basemen are working on finishing double plays and turning around throws from third. The shortstops are playing in and making throws to home as if theres a runner trying to score. Be sure to alternate hitting ground balls for safety purposes that way, the shortstop doesnt get in the way of the throw from third to first and take a ball off the side of the head.
- Round 3: 3-6-3, 4-2, 5-2
Here, the first basemen get to work on fielding a grounder, throwing to second and then getting back to the base to turn the double. The second and third basemen will throw home.