Advanced Youth Baseball Training Tips and Techiques

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Friday, September 25, 2009

New Youth Baseball Hitting Drill Makes Batting Practice More Productive

By Terry Scheele

Hitting a baseball is one of the toughest skills to master. And equally tough to teach. So to help players maximize their abilities and develop into better hitters, it's important for coaches to make batting practice as highly productive as possible.

Traditional "soft toss" has always been a favorite of coaches and is a great timing drill. But I've discovered a far better method that's particularly helpful for players at the youth baseball level who need to learn the basic fundamentals that are essential to proper swing development.

I call it Quick Toss and it's proved to be an excellent teaching and training drill for the young players I coach. It's a little different from traditional soft toss - which uses a slow, arching toss from the side, and may lead to bad habits such as over-striding, casting, and the big wind-up. Instead, Quick Toss suspends the ball directly over the plate and in the "proper hitting zone".

Quick Toss conditions players to react to the ball more instinctively- just as they would at the plate - which results in better timing and mechanics. It also promotes a more compact, consistent swing that develops "naturally" and gives the player a solid foundation to build their hitting skills upon.

Over the years, I've tried many hitting drills and numerous batting trainers. But none of them could effectively re-create the likeness of actually being in the batter's box. And nearly all the batting aids only offered one way to swing at the ball, which didn't do much to help players improve their swing.

So rather than have them practice traditional soft toss or use a one-dimensional training aid, I came up with Quick Toss. And believe me - if practice develops the perfect swing, then this could be the perfect practice.

Using this method, I'm able to target specific areas of the strike zone. This allows me to train my players' to hit the ball on the corners of the plate and give them a better sense of the strike zone..

As I monitor my players' development during batting practice, several noticeable improvements stand out:

* The bat went to the ball much quicker, which improved bat speed.

* They learned to "hit the ball where it's pitched," with improved accuracy and ball contact.

* The timing step was short and quick, improving balance and bat control.

Quick Toss is a new twist on a traditional drill, but it's made a big difference. It's certainly helped my coaches and me make the most out of every practice.

A father of two young athletes and a long-time youth coach, Terry Scheeledeveloped The Quick Hitter to make batting practice more effective and productive. His innovative batting trainer is used by baseball and softball teams nationwide -- from youth baseball to the college level. To view video demonstrations and learn more information on how The Quick Hitter improves hitting skills, visit

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