Softball hitting drill for 10 year old

EdRalphRomero

wooderson
SoSH Member
Oct 3, 2007
3,904
deep in the hole
My daughter is 10 and loves softball.  Her strength has always been that she can put the bat on the ball.  However, this year I (and her coaches) have noticed a problem.  And I recognize this problem because I have the same damn problem in both my own softball game and in my golf game.  She does not release the head of the bat.  She "holds off" her swing, raising her left elbow.  As a result everything tends to go the right side of the infield (she is a RHH).  I'm 40 and in co-ed softball I tend to hit everything to right field (also a RHH).  So I guess my lousy genetics might have led to this. 
 
I have a hitaway stick (one of those sticks with a ball on the end of it that we use for her to practice swinging). 
 
I should mention her coaches are great, but don't necessarily know how to address this particular challenge beyond telling her to swing hard and swing through. 
 
Any drills/advice/tips very much appreciated. 
 

Green Monster

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Sep 29, 2000
2,135
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EdRalphRomero said:
......
 
Any drills/advice/tips very much appreciated. 
 
My boys are a bit older, one is playing college baseball while the other is playing at the high school level.  Wether its staying in shape during the off-season or trying to work through a slump, they have always had good luck with hitting off of a tee into a net.  I actually installed a curtain net in my garage just for that.  You can also pick up a popup net for around $100.  When trying to work out of a slump, they will video tape with their phones, take a few swings, review the tape,....... adjust, etc..  You can then gently toss balls to her from the side and let her repeat the mechanics.  Swinging a bat, like many things in sport, is muscle memory.  Therefore it is important to repeat the good swings over and over.  If she is anything like my kids, I highly recommend using the video as sometimes they would rather see it for themselves then have me point things out to them.  Of course at 10 years old she is going to need some guidance about what a good swing looks like........Good Luck!
 

Green Monster

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Sep 29, 2000
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Also, its worth pointing out that it is not bad for a RHH to hit to the opposite field......Keep the weight back, hands inside the ball and a line drive to RCF is a beautiful thing!
 

EdRalphRomero

wooderson
SoSH Member
Oct 3, 2007
3,904
deep in the hole
Thanks.  I think I am going to get a tee and net going soon. 
 
My concern is that she is starting to repeat a flawed swing and ingrain it.  While I totally get your point about going the other way (I have even gotten yelled at in co-ed leagues because people think I am hitting to the weakest fielder on purpose when in reality I just have a lousy swing) I am concerned that she will not have as much power as she should because she is not releasing the bat head and therefore not whipping the bat through the zone.  Your point about a "good swing" is just what I am worried about.  She has good hand-eye coordination, but I am afraid her swing is fundamentally flawed. 
 
Thanks. 
 

leftfieldlegacy

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Jul 31, 2005
706
North Jersey
[SIZE=14.3999996185303px]You mentioned that one of her strengths has been her ability to get the bat on the ball. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=14.3999996185303px]One way a hitter does this is by letting the ball get closer to the plate before she starts her swing. By delaying her swing, she would not have time to extend her arms and release her hands. All she can do at that point is to hit the ball to right, because the ball is too far into the strike zone for her to pull it. [/SIZE][SIZE=14.3999996185303px]Her swing might not be flawed at all, she just might need to learn to start her swing sooner. If you took a video of her hitting off a tee, as mentioned by GM, you might find she has a good release once she can practice hitting a ball that is in front of her thus allowing her to complete a full swing.[/SIZE]
 
 
[SIZE=14.3999996185303px]Another thing to look at is the timing of her weight shift onto her front foot. She could be shifting her weight onto her left foot too soon which essentially has the same effect as letting the ball travel deeply into the strike zone. In either case a videotape would definitely help identify the problem. [/SIZE]
 

PaulinMyrBch

Don't touch his dog food
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Dec 10, 2003
8,315
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Buy her this, the TCB-82. Use it for front toss from about 10 feet or so. It's the best training aid I ever used for my son. It's going to feel like she's hitting a bowling ball, but you'll see immediate improvement. Don't over use it. 5-10 swings per cage session is all it takes. Take a few with that, then go back to normal softball, then go back for a few with this, etc.
 
It's a great device.
 

Rsox4life

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 23, 2005
161
Chesapeake, Va
I am a high school baseball coach and I have found with most kids, regardless of gender, they have trouble feeling what they are doing wrong. I have also found that they can usually make the adjustments on their own if you put them in situations where failing to adjust will give them negative results. My players that have a hard time pulling balls on the inner third I do a drill called hit or be hit. I front toss underhand balls right at their front hip and ask that they hit it hard foul. You simply can't do that if you don't get the bat head out front. There's no inside outing a pitch that would hit you. You can also set the tee up in that same spot if you want. Do that a few times and she will make the adjustment. You hit inside and outside exactly the same it's only the angle of the bat that changes. If she is hitting everything opposite field she's probably not doing that correctly either.