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Thread: Help with practice!

  1. #1
    Checking out the clubhouse 808state's Avatar
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    Default Help with practice!

    Hi,

    I've been coaching high school softball for about 8 years, the last 3 as head coach! I always try to look for new things and do a lot of research trying to get better.

    Lately I've been hearing the girls complaining about practice and how boring it is. I need ideas on how to keep it fresh...How do you run your practices? Any advice would be appreciated.

    This is what our practices normally look like 5 days a week...Should I start alternating things?

    Dynamic stretches 10 min.
    Form throwing/throwing 15 min.
    Hitting stations 30-40 min.
    Defensive drills 30-40 min.
    This is where we do different things daily like base running drills, situational hitting, live hitting, situational defense, etc...etc...
    End practice with base running

    Thanks


  2. #2
    I can talk softball all day Gags's Avatar
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    How much competition or game-type stations do you incorporate. Are the girls competing against themselves (personal best) or against each other? (Group 1 vs Group 2)

    Weíve had some practices where they wanted to spend the whole time trying to knock a stuffed snowman off a bucket.


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    I eat, sleep and breathe softball quincy's Avatar
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    Ignore me, you are more qualified then me,

    Kick ball.

    DW and DD do not why have not been kicked out yet.

    DD and me filled balloons all morning. I gave a cooler to opposing coach, what is this? You will figure it out?

    Nice person, once we started hitting them they figure it out.

    The other 6 teams were not happy with us, girls wee having a great time.

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    Checking out the clubhouse 808state's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gags View Post
    How much competition or game-type stations do you incorporate. Are the girls competing against themselves (personal best) or against each other? (Group 1 vs Group 2)

    Weíve had some practices where they wanted to spend the whole time trying to knock a stuffed snowman off a bucket.


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    We try to do it daily but I would say to be safe at least 3 times a week. I guess what I'm asking is...is it important to do "ALL" hitting stations or
    "ALL" defensive drills daily or picking a few will suffice? Just trying to see what changes I can make without sacrificing too much.

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    I can talk softball all day CanOfCorn's Avatar
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    Default Help with practice!

    Quote Originally Posted by 808state View Post
    We try to do it daily but I would say to be safe at least 3 times a week. I guess what I'm asking is...is it important to do "ALL" hitting stations or
    "ALL" defensive drills daily or picking a few will suffice? Just trying to see what changes I can make without sacrificing too much.
    I had a few drills that were group competitions for example a run down drill where the team was divided into three. Occasionally I would throw in ultimate softball (if you have space) just to do something fun and blow off steam.

    Really there are a few things we always did. Ground ball fundamentals, receiver outfield toss and we always throw around the infield in a game-speed sequence. Total time 20-30 minutes.

    I didnít make the throwing warm up long because I knew we would throw again and my throwing drills are at in game speed vs chatty toss between two girls. I do like form throwing but you have HS kids so ask yourself how much are they fixing in 15 minutes without supervision and how many actually need it because of bad form?

    I didnít always run a full infield or outfield but would switch up drills focused on different aspects like communication, relays, bunts, double-plays, cut-offs, etc. I am experienced enough to invent something based on a previous game failure and work it in once in a while and you can too.

    You donít have to hit everyday either. Again tee-work is good but once in-season the players are getting loose so few tee swings, unless there is a particular need. You are not changing someoneís swing so the focus moves to mental aspects of hitting, situational hitting and 5 on 5 on 5 drills trying to implement at in game speed the drills you did above. I also finish with base running unless it was an issue.

    Once in season each practice should emphasize fixing a weak area in the team that was exposed in a previous game (even if you won). Bunt coverage, communication, cuts, base running, grind out at-bats, situation hitting, executing routine plays without hesitation and the list goes on. Our goal was to execute an efficient game played crisply against solid competition with little input from me...the reward was bowling.

    CoC

    Edit:typo also would love to visit 808 for a practice...

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    Last edited by CanOfCorn; 12-12-2018 at 05:12 PM.

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    Checking out the clubhouse 808state's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CanOfCorn View Post
    I had a few drills that were group competitions for example a run down drill where the team was divided into three. Occasionally I would throw in ultimate softball (if you have space) just to do something fun and blow off steam.

    Really there are a few things we always did. Ground ball fundamentals, receiver outfield toss and we always throw around the infield in a game-speed sequence. Total time 20-30 minutes.

    I didn’t make the throwing warm up long because I knew we would throw again and my throwing drills are at in game speed vs chatty toss between two girls. I do like form throwing but you have HS kids so ask yourself how much are they fixing in 15 minutes without supervision and how many actually need it because of bad form?

    I didn’t always run a full infield or outfield but would switch up drills focused on different aspects like communication, relays, bunts, double-plays, cut-offs, etc. I am experienced enough to invent something based on a previous game failure and work it in once in a while and you can too.

    You don’t have to hit everyday either. Again tee-work is good but once in-season the players are getting loose so few tee swings, unless there is a particular need. You are not changing someone’s swing so the focus moves to mental aspects of hitting, situational hitting and 5 on 5 on 5 drills trying to implement at in game speed the drills you did above. I also finish with base running unless it was an issue.

    Once in season each practice should emphasize fixing a weak area in the team that was exposed in a previous game (even if you won). Bunt coverage, communication, cuts, base running, grind out at-bats, situation hitting, executing routine plays without hesitation and the list goes on. Our goal was to execute an efficient game played crisply against solid competition with little input from me...the reward was bowling.

    CoC

    Edit:typo also would love to visit 808 for a practice...

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Thanks for the tips! I also forgot to mention (stupid me) that we are a very small HS (80 students total) in a remote part of the island about 2 hours from town. So really 90% of our girls are just learning the game as freshman because we have no local leagues. The ones that do have any experience are the ones that play club ball and travel 2 hours each way for club practice, which is almost no one because of the distance. So that is really why we have FORM throwing amongst other basic drills...lol.

    If you're ever around during the preseason/season let me know and you could join us!!

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    NVfishing (12-22-2018)

  8. #7
    Certified softball maniac NVfishing's Avatar
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    Since you have lots of new players with the small team I'd think most drills would be new or semi new. A speed drill on the bases. Divide the team in two groups. One group at home and the other on second base. Hand the player in front at each line a softball. Then have a race. Both girls run starting at the same time. When they make it back to the base they started on they hand the ball to the next runner in the line. Which ever group finishes first is the winning group.


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