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Fastpitch Softball Hitting Drill

FastpitchFan

Softball fan
Feb 28, 2008
476
0
Montreal, Canada
Fastpitch Softball Hitting Drills

Since we have great people here I would love if you could share your best faspitch softball hitting drill.

Every softball hitting instructor or coach is always looking for new, innovative and effective hitting drills.

Let me get started.

One of my favorite softball hitting drill is the Long Tee.

You set the T up at home plate. You put a large target behind second base (net, garbage can, player with a glove, etc.) and you have your hitter try to drive the ball right at that targets.

Key points: hit line drives, drive-through, hit the ball at the sweet spot. It teaches players how to stay long through the zone and they instant feedback as to where the ball goes. I have had a lot of success with it.

You can also set up multiple tees in a row like a long the 3rd base line and have several hitters try to do that at the same time aiming for a target in front of them at 75-90 feet.

What are your best softball hitting drills?

Marc
 
May 9, 2008
432
0
Hartford, CT
hitting drill

We use what we call a Dropper. (construction consists of a base, vertical pole, and PVC plumbing pipes formed as a downward chute with curve like and abreviated candy cane)).

Tennis balls dropped down the chute...player ready to receive "pitch".
Practice short fast swing......
Can get in 40-50 swings in about 7-8 minutes and off to the next station.

Tough at first as the girls cannot see tha ball coming down, just see as it comes out...not much time....
 
May 9, 2008
432
0
Hartford, CT
hitting

Pretty long swings...

I actually went to two Michele Smith clinics and she actually recommended or shorter quicker swing than what she has. She also recommends/teaches NOT letting go of the bat with one hand.

Been watching College ball on TV the last couple of weeks...they also have some long swings.

We have a couple of quick pitchers with a bunch of 9 year olds ...
shorter swing works for them.......
The older girls (12's) started this in September and they are hitting better.....

I'm looking forward to what others submit as I have one daughter who really wants to get better.....
 
May 9, 2008
432
0
Hartford, CT
hitting drills

Wasn't disagreeing, Mark...for for some of our players this is really working.

I'm posting as a coach and a parent ...

My daughter is still having hitting issues ... but I see many improvements in a number of other players since we started these hitting clinics and using a dropper....machine...flipping plastic covers...etc...

It could just be attributed to correcting stance...all the extra swings ... etc.....

We did have a Travel play come back to also play in our League this year and she was VERY familiar with the dropper so her coach must have used it at some point.
(still can't figure out why she came back to play in this league this last year in addition to her Travel team in addition to the Middle School team)

Today I'm working on fixing my little pitcher!
 
May 9, 2008
432
0
Hartford, CT
hitting

Their bats travel almost 360 ...
bats start pretty far back behind head and go almost past the start point.

When I played I was told that follow through and opening hips was the most important thing.
I was never a long hitter .. I broke the rules (late 70's) and learned how to punch it over infielders heads....if they moved back, I just short grounded it...but I could not hit into the outfield for my life.
I got on base a ton and just stole stole stole.

I don't think our coach ever had us bunt....long time ago....very rural area...


Since a lot of our girls are not getting around (1st base / right field ) ...
we have done flat bat and the bat is back past the catcher side shoulder, not behind them.
If you can see the bat on both sides of their head at load..they (bat) are too far back.....

The better hitters get their hips open and hit pretty far....the kids still working on this tend to not swing around enough to get their hips around.
Many newer kids just stand their and hope for a walk!

I completely agree that the players in the link you showed me are fantastic.....but if any (most) of our kids had a swing like that..the ball would be in the catchers mit before they got the bat over the plate....

We don't have a dropper at home...we use a tee and soft-toss into a tarp over the playscape.....
Looking into a portable net so we can bat in out basement (pitch there all winter).

Any comments would be much appreciated.
 
May 12, 2008
2,217
0
Well the thing is the movement foward/stride/hip shift/momentum development is done every time prior to the decision to stop or continue the swing. The way I define long or short swing is the time, commonly measured in the number of frames on a standard 30 frames per second video, from first movement of the bathead into the swing plane till contact. Best hitters in the world are around four frames by this measure. Five frames will get you a lot of fun in high school and college. Mostly I see seven frame hitters and they just won't do well once good pitchers start changing speeds and hitting spots. All the movement before the launch of the bat head into the swing plane is not something that hurts, but rather helps, as long as the hitter knows how to "dance" with the pitcher and knows how to quickly stop the foward momentum and turn it into rotation. And frankly the hitters you see on that link are some of the best hitters in the world facing the best pitching in the world so I would suggest that proves out the concept. I suggest comparing anything anyone tells you about hitting to slow motion video of the best in the world. That includes me, your own beliefs and anyone else no matter what their resume. You will commonly find ex pros in bb as well as past and current college fp hotshots teaching things they did not do themselves.

To add a little, the best hitters know how to turn the foward twisting momentum of the stride/hip shift into rotation. Elite hitters sometimes use a LOT of this momentum and sometimes a little. But they all use some. All of them. And you can't do that in a dropper drill.

As to the success you are seeing, as Scott Sarginson says, any system violently executed will show improvement. I'm not really talking about the dropper drill. I'm addressing the nature of an efficient effective swing as demonstrated by the best in the world when studied in slow motion video.
 
May 7, 2008
235
0
Assess each player individually. Analyze footwork, hips, arms, bat, etc. Each girl may need a different drill to work on at home...with team practice all of it. A batting instructor once told my dd to put the bat across her lower back. Lock the arms around the bat, plant feet rotate move upper body to the left and to the right to work on torque. I must confess that I do not see my children use this drill, so I cannot account for its effectiveness. Maybe someone has some input.

Ang
 

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