10U Rec. help organizing practicec
I am looking for a little advise on organizing Rec 10U practice. Is there a good site that helps with planning practices? I understand things will change as the year goes on. I'll have 12 girls total, 5 or 6 returning from last year and I know or have seen a couple of others.
I am pretty sure I've got 4 girls that can have a real catch. Stand somewhere between 50 to 60 feet and reliably throw and catch the ball. Swing and hit the ball most of the time at in BP. Another 4 that will probably still catching the ball if thrown well. Maybe still palm up, throwing elbow low, iffy being able to make the a full 60 foot throw with accuracy. They will probably swing and miss a good 50% of the time in BP. Then the last 4 I am not sure at all.
I have several parents that are going to be coaching with me. But not always the same ones for every practice. But I am assuming Iíll have 2 helpers for each practice.
I am hoping for 2 practices a week of about an hour or so until games. Then once a week (if possible) during the season. Games start the first week of April and being in the north east, I am expecting most of my practices to be inside until then.
I am thinking 3 stations for minimal sitting around and having a coach oversee. For the indoor practices, 2 on the tee, and 2 in the cage. Then the other 8 are paired up practicing having a throwing / catching drills, throwing each other ground balls.
Once outside, should I make it a priority to get bp swings every practice? I know I have to work in fielding & situations and base running as well. If doing BP, then do you use that time to let fielders make the full play? Use a couple of kids as base runners to get them used to reading the ball? Doing that takes time.
When doing infield, still keep someone on the Tee and other still throwing and catching drills?
Any advice is welcome.
Nothing specific but set up different stations and force the parents to be involved. At this age you will have as many parents as players.
I can not catch, fine stand here and see they do this and do not hit each other.
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JMO, but 1 hour of practice seems short. It takes us 18-20 minutes just for warmups, dynamic stretches, and throwing(one knee throws progressing out to long toss). The biggest piece of advice that I can offer is to plan your practices ahead of time and take into account the time it'll take for each station. At this age it's about teaching softball fundamentals, but also about creating athletes. I like to keep my practices at a higher pace with a high number of reps, especially when you have that much time before the season starts. Then as we get closer to the start of the season, we start allocating more time to game situations and the mental side of things.
Originally Posted by cnardone
I agree. If I can get 1:30 reserved I will, I just don't know if that will be possible. Figuring out how much time at each station is important, I don't want anyone to miss something, especially something they like to do.
Originally Posted by guyonabuffalo
For my travel team, I have three practices per week. One of those days is an hour of conditioning and the other two are two-hour practices. Each two-hour practice we hit and alternate infield one practice and outfield the next practice. At this age they should be learning how to play all the positions. Also important at this age is for them to have fun, so I would highly recommend planning for some sort of competitive game at the end of practice just to remind the girls why they're coming out there in the first place. Good luck!
fundamentals are priority one in preseason.
for those having trouble catching, have one station with two girls at most at a time, have a parent 10 feet away throw to them, players up against a wall or fence at least as tall as them (this keeps them from backing away or sidestepping). have glove in waving hi position, have parent throw right into glove (under hand is fine as long as it is fiarly level, not a lob). repeat ad nauseum. then move to player holding glove in front of chest/belly thumb down, same thing, throw right into the glove. repeat ad nauseum. then have them in full backhand mode, (glove thumb down in front of throwing arm). then move on to underhand catch below the belt. next stage is to have them go from ready to each of these, then them reacting on their own. might take several practices. also, instruct all parents (but especially those who having issue catching) in this drill, telling (do not ask) them to work on this outside of practice, obviulsy more advance girls can simply have a real catch (ie 40-50 feet) with parents.
for fly balls, helmet on drill with tennis balls (goal is to have ball hit their helmet or facemask) helps them get under ball, emphasis getting under and NOT basket catching.
lots of tee work, but make certain to watch, to help correct swings before bad mechanics get ingrained. at this level, not looking for perfect swings, more about stance, rotation, and not dropping shoulder or bat.
situations at that age are only going to be useful (other than field the grounder in IF and throw to 1B) once they see the situation in a game. if they did it right, praise them for it, if they did wrong thing, talk about it briefly in post game (and limit this to one or two situations), and say we will work on it next practice. really sinks in after they see it in game. baserunning and fielding situations I have HC or AC hit the balls, kids hitting fielders are standing around to much on bad pitches, swing and misses
10U Rec... Fundamentals will be priority all season.
Throw and catch every practice. Warm-ups, drills, competitions. Try your best to get the proper techniques in early.
If you have 2 practices a week, and you can spend one on hitting every week, it'll really pay off when the games start being played. That'll leave you another practice each week to cover fielding, position responsibilities, base running etc.
If you can swing it, scrimmage another team before games start. It's much easier to correct things in a scrimmage and find out where you are as a team, and what you need to work on. Teams here are always looking to scrimmage. Our 10u Rec team scrimmaged an 8u boys team once, just to get in the practice.
Remember it's Rec ball, so make it fun for the girls, keep good communication lines with the parents, and enjoy it as much as you can.
Thanks for the responses.
Definitely, fun then fundamentals. I want the kids have fun and want to come and play. Of course having some successes feeds into that as well.
@bmakj , I've done a lot of your first drill. Last year, as an AC i took it as my personal mission with a couple of girls to get them beyond those drills and catching the ball consistently.
I know a lot of coaches love trying to get the kids to play catch with each other. The problem with younger ages is that no only can't a lot of them catch, but they also can't throw very accurate. Instead of learning how to catch they wind up just chasing balls down for 10 minutes. We had a great 10U coach and I was the AC, but truthfully DD got better because we spent almost every day playing catch in the back yard. We used to count how many we could throw before it stopped hitting the ground. One day we got to 100 and no longer counted after that.
If you can talk to parents and find some who can play catch with their kids at home it will truly pay off.
When DD was 8 or so she liked to catch palm up. I fixed it on 1 session. I used wiffle balls and had her go from 3 to 9 in fairly rapid succession. Try a station with it at a practice or 2.
It sounds like the kids are lucky to have a coach who cares about them. You'll do fine.
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a lot of it is throwing directly into their glove. they have to build confidence that the glove will catch the ball , so they stop reching out palm up trying to shy away from it.
oh and encourage face masks! pretty cheap really, once had a girl who was afraid of the ball, I took a ball and bounced it off her face mask from a few inches away about half a dozen times in a row, asked her if it hurt, she giggle no!
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