Baserunning Drills for Softball Players
Our Revolution Softball Camps each summer consistently beat the competition for a number of reasons. Our NCAA coaching staff is pulled from the country’s top coaches just so every camper that joins us gets the type of individualized attention that they simply wouldn’t get anywhere else.
We know that it’s hard for softball players to truly feel like they’re improving when they’re doing a drill in the middle of a huge group. That’s why we pride ourselves on consistently having a low camper-to-coach ratio, like at our New Jersey Softball Camps. The programs our camp directors put together focus on sportsmanship, improvement, excellence, and fun. Don’t worry, though, we didn’t forget about the on-field skills everyone wants to get better at, too!
When talking about that, there are five specific pillars that each of our softball camps are built upon. They include the following:
- Batting: stance improvement, hit-and-runs, pull hitting, bunting, and hitting for power.
- Pitching: pitching motions, release points, and communication between pitcher and catcher.
- Fielding: catching pop-ups and ground balls, performing relays, and turning double plays
- Baserunning: stealing, pickles, and tagging up
- Nutrition and conditioning
One of our goals is to provide the type of instruction that softball players can take home with them and continue to improve long after camp has finished for the summer. Great softball teams are developed during the season, but great softball players are developed in the offseason, and we hope to help in that process as much as we can.
An overlooked aspect of elite softball players is baserunning. That’s understandable since there is a lot of attention given to things like pitching, hitting, and fielding (after all, those were the first three skills we listed above!). A softball player with above average baserunning skills can not only put their team in an advantageous position consistently, but they can also consistently put pressure on the opposition, which can alter the entire outcome of games. Here are two drills that will help you improve your running on the base paths.
The point of this drill is to teach players how to advance runners and put pressure on the defense while simulating game-type situations. This is more of a full-team practice drill, so it also gives fielders a chance to learn how to handle this kind of situation before seeing it in a live game.
In order to make this happen, you’ll need to field a full team out on defense, which includes having a pitcher on the mound. There should be a couple base coaches, and the players not out on defense are ready to bat. A coach will then put runners on base and relay a situation, including the number of outs, who is on base, and what the batter is doing. After signaling what they want the baserunners to do, those on offense execute the play while those on defense try to record outs.
Race to Home
This is another drill that simulates a game-type situation while also working on conditioning and baserunning. Split players into three teams with one lining up at home plate, the second one lining up behind first base, and the final team lining up behind third base. A coach will kneel in soft-toss position 10-12 feet from home plate, and you’re ready to get started.
One of the players at home will hit a soft toss from coach and immediately start sprinting to first base. As that happens, a player from both first and third base will sprint after the ball. Once both touch it, the runner stops, with that team receiving a point for each base they reached before being forced to stop.