How to Improve Softball Footwork
This next drill is one of my favorite drill. I use it all the time with my athletes. And guess what? The athletes love it, because it's a challenge every time. All you need is basically two tennis balls or even one tennis ball to start with. The purpose of that drill is to really work on quick acceleration and getting to the ball quickly.
All you want to do is to have the athletes standing in front into the defensive position or assuming a good athletic stance. Then you want a partner to be couple feet away. You can start with one ball only. Let's say I put one in my pocket right here. Put it right here. The purpose of that drill is I'm gonna let the ball bounce on the ground, and she has to get to the ball before it bounces a second time.
Now, it's not always possible. As I said, it's a challenge. Sometimes it's gonna be hard, but it has to be challenging yet it has to be doable. That's the idea behind the drill. All you want the athletes to do is to get in their defensive stance as soon as they see the ball leaving my hand.
They have to plyo step and then start and accelerate quickly and try to get to the ball before it bounces second time. Now, you always want to emphasize to do everything correctly. That means that, as soon as they catch the ball, they also have to work on the transition to get into their throwing stance.
Always emphasize correct mechanics in everything you do. Then I could back up a little bit further. Again, it was not that challenging for her. The next step into that drill to make it a little more difficult, using two tennis ball. And at that point, she doesn't know which one I'm gonna drop, okay. So again, she has to focus on making sure she gets a good plyo step, a good start, and gets the ball very quickly. Backing up a little, and that's a gonna be a little more challenging for her. There we go.
Sometimes, the ball's gonna bounce a second time, which is fine, because the athletes have comfortable feeling balls very low and getting there very quickly. Let's do it again. Excellent. So as you see, this is something that doesn't require a lot of space. All you need are two tennis balls per groups of two. Work in partners. Do that for a couple minutes, maybe 10 each and switch. The athletes will love it, and this is definitely going to work on their ability to get to the ball very quickly and work on their acceleration using the plyo step technique.
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