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Monthly Archives: April 2017

Run Bases in Softball

Tactics for running from home to 1st base is quite similar to baseball, as far as running hard through the base, never slow as you approach the base, and veering to the right after hitting the bag, as an overthrow will be to the right side of the runner’s view.

The same tactic for an extra base hit, of swinging out towards the dugout, hitting the inside of the base and taking a straight line to second base, is identical to baseball.

Once on first base, the goal of advancing is identical to baseball, but the tactics utilized are totally different, as leadoffs are not allowed in softball. There are two methods of getting a good leadoff and jump on the ball to advance to second base.

The first thing to remember is the runner can not leave the base until the ball leaves the pitcher’s hand, so timing is critical. This applies to every base, not just first base.

The first method is to place your left foot on the back half of the base, your right arm leading towards second base as your body is cocked towards the pitcher. As the pitcher releases the ball, push off the base with your left leg, take three steps forward, always facing and looking at the ball, hop, hop and stop, always being prepared to advance to second on a ground ball or passed ball, or to get quickly back to first base.

The second method is to place your right leg against the front of the base leading with your left arm. Take three steps, hop, hop and stop. Either one of these methods are fine, unless there’s a particular reason for using one or the other, it’s a matter of personal choice.

To lead off of second base you use one of the two methods described for first base, but the path you’ll choose to third base will determine where you’ll take your lead to.

If you’re looking at a situation where it is imperative you reach third base as quickly as possible, such as in a sacrifice bunt situation, you will take your 3 step, hop, hop, stop lead in a direct line to third base. The old “shortest distance between two objects is a straight line” rule.

However, if you’re in a normal situation of scoring being your ultimate goal, you will take your normal lead off, except you will not go in a straight line to third, but rather veer outwards toward left field. This will allow you to approach third base, on a hit, in a manner in which you can ” Cut ” the base by hitting the inside corner of the base with your foot, and project a straight line to home plate.

Leading off third base, again uses the identical sprinter’s start. The runner will take their three step, hop, hop, stop lead, however when they stop their lead, it is critical the runner’s shoulders are square to the infield, as they must be able to quickly return to third base. Should their shoulders be square with the catcher, they most likely will be thrown out by a good catcher, because they won’t be able to turn their body around and return to third before the ball arrives.

Batting Cage Nets in Softball

1. They help to contain the balls during batting practices

It can be quite difficult and tiring to gather stray balls during practice. However, the tunnel ensures that the balls are contained within. This makes gathering the balls much easier and therefore enables the practice sessions to continue smoothly.
The containment of the balls within the tunnel also ensures that they are not lost when hit far away or out of the field. You can therefore save a lot of money by simply ensuring that balls are contained.

2. They protect any spectators from injury

The tunnel is very important for the protection of spectators and other people that may be in the area. It keeps the balls contained during the practice session. This prevents the balls from flying and hitting other people who are in the area. This is especially important when training as a team as you will protect your other players from injuries.

The tunnel also ensures that you do not damage other equipment or property that may be nearby.

3. It helps to improve the quality of practice sessions

The tunnel will ensure that the balls are contained and players can give it their best at every practice session. They will not be worried about injuries, damage or scattering balls. They can therefore go all out.

4. It enables players to practice in a small or limited space

Batting cage nets make it possible for you to practice in a small or limited space. It is therefore possible to give it your best shot even when training in your backyard. You would not have to worry about injuring anyone or damaging anything that may be within easy reach.

Learn to Bunt in Baseball

Not what the coach had hoped for. Not what you had hoped for. You are feeling down and wishing the coach had never called for the bunt. You know you have let your team down. Why did he ask me to bunt? I can hit the ball and I was due. I would have been the hero.

Do you ever want this to happen you? No, everybody wants to be the hero. The game was close and the coach knew that even good hitters only get a hit three out of ten times. A good bunter can lay down a sacrifice bunt eight out of ten times. So get prepared. Learn the proper mechanics of bunting and practice, practice, and more practice. If you get that bunt down and get the game tied up, you would have been the hero. They would have called you a great team player.

Bunting a baseball is a skill that all players can master. Not all players can hit with power, or hit for a high batting average. But bunting is a baseball tool that every player should have. There are no good excuses for not knowing how to bunt. And once you learn how to get a good sacrifice bunt down, you might even learn to bunt for a hit. Being able to get on base by bunting will help your batting average rise significantly. Strive to be a complete player and add bunting to your arsenal of baseball tools.

Over the last twenty plus years, Tom Read has been a coach, parent, and a fan of organized baseball. He has shared this experience with his sons and many other players on his teams. Many have gone on to play at the college level.

Movement in Volleyball

Always try to keep your feet as wide as your shoulders. This gives you a stable base. As you become more accomplished as a player, your base will become wider as you get stronger. If possible, keep your head between your knees when you move so that you stay balanced when moving laterally. When moving forward or backward, keep your body weight distributed evenly on your feet and not on your toes or heels. Keep your head slightly in front of your trunk. If you lead with your head, your body will follow. If you fall back with your head, your body will again follow and you will be caught out of position. Your feet should be pointing straight ahead. Avoid having your toes out like a duck or in like a pigeon.

To maintain a stable body position, keep your knees in line with your toes. Often beginners are not strong enough to hold this position. This is one of the reasons why we focus on strength being your foundation. Beginners tend to have their knees cave in and do not stay in line with their toes. Your knees should be slightly bent so that you can move easily in any direction. The size of the step you take when moving toward the ball depends on how far you have to move. It is always best to step first with the foot closest to the ball in the direction that you want to move. If not, you are most likely going to cross your feet, which gets you nowhere on your first step and costs valuable time.

When you think of the best athletes in the sport and how smoothly and gracefully they move, what do you think of? These players are so efficient in their movements that no wasted motion occurs. They seem to glide as they move. As you become more accomplished and experienced in volleyball, you will notice how much better that you will move as well. You learn that if your knees are not bent you cannot move. If your body weight is not balanced on both feet or you are leaning in one direction more than another, you do not have time to get to a ball that is moving the opposite way. This awareness comes with experience, by moving over and over again.

When moving to play a ball, try to face your target or the position or player to whom you are sending the ball. Track the ball coming toward you by focusing on the bottom half of the ball. You want to beat the ball to the place on the court that it is moving toward by working to keep the ball between you and your intended target.