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Most Useful Tips on Improving Softball Hitting

Most Useful Tips on Improving Softball Hitting

When playing softball, the most complex roles that every player need to master is softball hitting. Players who cherish playing softball have special connection to it for better mental and physical development. It is one of the games that require the mind and body working together for top results. Knowing how to throw and hit a ball is not enough, it is prudent to perfect the skills in order to avoid being left behind. Here are the most useful tips on hitting the softball that you require.

Understand personal techniques

To advance in softball, players are advised to understand themselves and develop individual tactics. While it is okay to look at others and how they do it, trying to copy them will not help. Work on your techniques and improve on them from time to time. A good way to do this is making every game a learning session. Work closely with the team leader and coach to get a review of personal techniques and how to improve on them. This will make it easy to fine tune every aspect of your hitting so that moments taken in the game helps to bring top results.

Getting the perfect grip on the bat

To be sure of a perfect hit every moment, you need the right bat grip. Professional softball coaches insist that you should grip the bat with a handshake. This gives you better control and makes targeting easy. Place the bat in the front and where possible pinch it between index finger and thumb. The objective is keeping the wrist loose, get top speed and make it possible to explode the hands to the ball. Remember that this requires patience to try, practice and perfect until it becomes part of you.

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Top Softball Player Qualities

Want to become a top softball player? Build on these qualities

To be successful in softball, players must do a lot of practice, maintain focus and learn continuously. It is about maintaining the right attitude about the coach, team members and loses. Though the qualities of a player may depend on the position you play in the team, there are core qualities that every player must depict to help win the game. Here are 4 main qualities that will make you become a top player and team member that you should develop.

  • Top speed: In softball, a typical play only lasts about 5 seconds or even less. Good players must be fast in order to quickly get out of batter box, steal bases and catch fly balls. It is because of this that many coaches insist that players think and train like athletes. To build on speed, players have to practice running and accelerating as fast as possible.
  • Explosive strength: Being able to develop a lot of power is very critical. As a pitcher, being powerful makes it easy to throw balls at lightning speed so that the batter can miss it. Besides, the batter needs a lot of power to hit the ball and get it outside the field out of the defensive players range. To develop a lot of power, a player must eat well and participate in a lot of training. Make sure to focus on improving the wrist, legs, hands and core muscles that deliver the power you need in the field.
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Softball Beginner Drills: How to increase the softball Bat Speed

One of the fundamental skills of a hitter is that of handling a bat. Usually, hitters are trained to hold a bat and hit in an almost similar way that result to the same bat speed (40 – 45 mph). This is a very good practice when beginning your tuition as a hitter. Nonetheless, there is always a notable distinction between pro hitters and novice hitters by examining just the agility of hitting (bats peed). Often, expert hitters always win by hitting easier, faster and accurately whereas learners don’t.

A study that was carried out by Ralph and Karen (Human Kinetics, 2012) to examine the relationship between the bat speed and the performance of a team’s has affirmed this popular hypothesis [1]. According to their publication on the research, a faster bat speed is likely to boost the chances of a team’s win by almost a half. Thus, this edition seeks to enlighten you on a few proven tips and drills that will help you or your team to increase your chances of winning through increasing the bat speed.

Points to remember …

Hitting is an art. It isn’t majorly a talent as many would love to put it. It is therefore important for any hitter to remember the following before reading further:

  • That all hitters can become perfectionists, as long as they practice regularly
  • The tips and drills below are only effective if practiced not if read.
  • Most of the drills and tips are greatly effective if shared and practiced by a partner/friend. So, don’t be solo, share this.

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Parenting Tips: Words your Young Softball Player Never Should Say

Words are one of the basic building blocks of a character. We are what we do; we do what we learnt; we learnt what we heard. In simpler terms, we all are what we heard. Whatever we speak is likely to be our very true character. The words a coach or a player speaks can inspire or demoralize. As such, it’s just words that build good player and it is words that destroy the ace players. There are popular words that a parent should always look out for and discourage a trainee kid from using them. Most coaches do not love the following phrases:

“…I just can’t …”

If a player becomes fond of using this phrase from an early age, there could be likelihood that such a player will not become any better player in softball. Just think of it again, if “…I just can’t do it…”, why then should I be considered in the school team? When this phrase persists, it does not only demoralize the individual player of his/her ability but it also lowers a coach’s desire to train such a player to perform better. Always train your child to know that he/she will do it until he/she becomes defeated.

“…why her/him…?”

A player is not a coach. Sadly, there are some players that will always want to be “better” than their training coaches. So be it, if they are better; but all players must heed to their coaches/trainers. If a coach opts to do a player replacement or a disciplinary action to a player, it could be beneficial to the entire team. Thus, all players ought to support their coaches in making team decisions as opposed to objecting their decisions. It is not to mean that coaches do not make mistakes, but it means that coaches should be allowed to make individual decisions and be corrected later not while gaming.

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Why Jogging is a BAD Idea for Softball

Let me tell you why jogging is a bad idea for softball.  You see traditionally, baseball and softball have been very conservative sports.  In other words, we do things the way it had always been done.  Things started to change a couple of years ago in terms of conditioning for softball.  Conditioning is a big part of the game.  You don’t have a choice.  You need to be fit in order to perform in the highest level.

For a long time it was believed that doing some conditioning and cardio was good for you.  It will make your legs stronger, its good for pitchers, good for catchers and coaches will make the team run and run and run and run.  Here’s the thing, softball does not require a high level of cardio vascular fitness to play at a high level.  We need speed, power, agility, and strength but we don’t need a lot of aerobic endurance.  Don’t get me wrong.  I’m not saying you don’t need that, the base of aerobic fitness.  Of course you do.  All athletes, no matter what sport needs a base of aerobic fitness.

What do I mean by base of aerobic fitness?  If your players or yourself can run 20-30 minutes at a decent pace without huffing and puffing then you have a good enough cardio base.  At that point, you should be doing something else that matters for softball.  You see, spending too much time on cardio work can actually be detrimental to the game.  Like sprinters, they don’t do a lot of cardio because it hinders the ability to run fast.  When you do a steady state cardio work, as jogging for a while it’s as far as it can be from what we need on the field.

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Softball Performance – Tips & Tricks for Softball Hitters

Softball hitters are the engine of a softball game. Hitters do make the game lively and enjoyable. As such, I am pretty sure enough training on drills and emphasis has already been made to bring up perfect hitters.  But drills alone aren’t all that one needs to win. A few tricks will supplement a winner. When all teams are equally prepared, the winning team will only need utilize just one simple trick to gain an upper hand in the competition and outperform. Thus, in this edition, I wish to take my hitter readers through a simple “recipe” to outplay and outperform in the field.

#1. Be consistent in training: train, train and train always

To be a perfect hitter in softball is a daily full-time job. I mean it. Any sincerely good hitter will confess that hitting doesn’t come easy as it looks when other people do it. To be a good hitter, you have to invest loads of time in training. One important tip is that you should be consistent and learn to throw repeatedly with only one single style constantly. Of course you can add some showoff and pomp but only when after you are absolutely sure of winning.

 #2. Be confident: …if you think you can do it, you will surely do it.

It’s not just an issue of telling yourself you can. It means knowing you can. Obviously, such confidence in anything can only come from adequate training/learning. So, tip #1 will be a key to tip #2.  When you are confident, you will be sure of the perfect swings and perfect releases regardless of how a pitch is hurled at you.

#3. Learn the pitching discipline

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5 Common Mistakes Softball Coaches Do

5 Common Mistakes Softball Coaches Do

All parents believe their daughters are all expert players. All players believe they have an able coach. Yet, most coaches often view the exact opposite. Softball coaching is not purely a skill. It is a combination of a skill, a talent, an experience, a passion and an ability to lead. Honestly, if one shows me the performance of a softball team in 10 games, I can easily guess the age and experience of the coach. Softball coaches often grapple with the challenge of balancing between the nurturing of players and the team pressure to triumph in the games. Unlike other aspects of softball, it costs just one simple regular mistake to bring down the good girls. For a good team thus; thou (coach) shall not do the following mistakes.

  1. Become a Game Winning-Hunter

The aim of sporting is not always about the medal and trophies but also about training morality, having fun and inculcating other skills in players. All trained coaches know that. However, at times the pressure to win abounds; the result then becomes to use all means just to train trophies. When this happens, game malpractices are not only pardoned by the coach but are also encouraged when they work to meet the goal of winning. The result of it becomes injuries, suspensions and ultimately cultures immorality that ruins the team at the very peak of its success. All good coaches should learn to embrace one simple rule: obey the rules no matter what happens. Either, he/she should learn to embrace success yet cope with failure.

  1. Training Silent Softball Players
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The Most Important Player on the Field

The player in the play, the most important player on your team at that moment!

The player in the play, the most important player on your team at that moment!

By Ken Krause

Ok, quick question for all you softball fanatics. Who is the most important player on the field? Is it the pitcher? The catcher? The shortstop with the sure hands and strong arm? The center fielder with wings on her feet? The cleanup hitter who can change a game with one swing?

Take a second to get your answer before I give you mine. Ok, are you ready? The most important player on the field is…

…whoever is in the play at the moment. It could be any of those players I listed above. Or it could be the weakest player on either team.

The reason is our sport is so conditional. In any other sport you can try to manipulate the flow of the game to take advantage of your best player. But in fastpitch softball, you’re kind of stuck.

Think about it. In basketball you can try to work the ball to Lebron James or Tamika Catchings when the game is on the line. In hockey, you want Sidney Crosby to have the puck, or Roberto Luongo in the goal. In football you’re going to hand the ball to Adrian Peterson or try to throw the ball to Calvin Johnson. And you’re preferably going to have Tom Brady or a Manning to do it.

But in softball, you have very little control. If you need a long fly ball and you have your weakest hitter at the plate you’re stuck. Sure, you can pinch hit for her, but odds are if the hitter coming in was that much better she wouldn’t be available to pinch hit. She’d be playing already.

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Softball Performance Tips – Building to Become Success

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By Ken Krause, Life in the Fastpitch Lane blog

You see them all the time — that fastpitch softball team this is always touting its great win-loss record. They place an article in the local newspaper, or you go to check out their website, and there’s a list of tournaments they’ve won and their record is something unbelievable like 64-5. Yet you’ve seen them play, and you know their players, and they just don’t seem that good.

Some coaches do it on purpose, because for them it’s all about the win-loss record. They are known for sandbagging, i.e. playing in tournaments or leagues that are below the caliber of their teams to rack up easy Ws. Or they play to win in games where everyone else is trying to develop their weaker players.

Others do it more accidentally. Sometimes you don’t know how good your team is going to be so you pick tournaments or leagues you think are right, only to find out you’re better than you thought.

Here’s the thing, though. If you’re winning every tournament you enter, you’re probably not challenging your players enough. Winning a tournament should be an accomplishment, not a regular expectation. You want to play the best competition you can handle, so at the end of the day it takes your all to come out on top. Anything else is cheating the players.

How can it be cheating them when it feels so good to win? Because they’re not developing at the level they should. In order to be the best you have to play the best. If you’re playing teams you know you can beat easily it’s like power lifting with light weights. It looks good, but it doesn’t do much to make you stronger.

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Softball Success Tips: Do the Hardest Thing

Finally, after 10 innings and almost 3 hours o...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

by Stacie Mahoe

If softball success was easy, everyone would be an all-star, but its not and, while everyone may get a trophy nowadays, not everyone is an all-star.

What’s that thing they say about success? Oh yeah, the only place success comes before work is in the dictionary.

Therefore, in order to achieve softball success, you must be willing to do what others are not. You must be willing to put in the work, not just when you feel like it, but all the time, day in and day out.

The “secret” to success for most people is actually not some secret formula or mysterious strategy.  It rarely has anything to do with the latest trend or training at the best facilities.  In fact the “secret” most successful people know is pretty boring and UN-glamourous.  In order to achieve “great” things, you must do the work and possess the willingness to do the hardest thing.

What hardest thing? You know, the thing you don’t particularly like doing.  The thing you would gladly skip if no one made you do it.  The thing you practically can’t stand even though you know it’s good for you and you know doing it will improve your softball performance.

You must be willing to do that thing.

So many players and coaches say they want to be successful, win big games, accumulate amazing stats, and win the biggest prize…and yet they are unwilling to do the work it takes to get to that level.  They often put off the hard stuff or dog the tough training.  They pass up the opportunity to train harder, focus better, increase intensity, or put in more time than their competition.  They might sustain full blown commitment and effort for a short period of time, but grow weary of the discipline and dedication required as the season drags on.

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