Outfielders | Improve Range In The Outfield
How often does a little league outfielder immediately step or run forward when a fly ball is coming towards him? Overrunning the ball is a common mistake for outfielders. Another mistake is outfielders who do not know the proper technique for going after a ball that is hit over their head. Judging fly balls takes practice and then more practice. If an outfielder is not positioned correctly it is very difficult to track a fly ball. Managing the position of a fly ball for an outfielder is not easy. Misreading a ball can lead to a base hit, double, or triple. Often times an outfielder’s first step is the most important part of catching a fly ball. An outfielder must manage his position in order to end up in the right place at the right time to catch the ball. Good footwork is a must when outfielders are looking to improve their range and catch everything hit their way.
The greatest outfielders of all time are known as the baseball players that had the ability to use their glove, legs, and arm to perform routine and exceptional plays consistently. Willie Mays and Roberto Clemente were two of the best outfielders. What were the assets that made both of these outfielders so incredible? They both possessed the ability to track down balls hit to the outfield with high speed, utilized their incredible throwing arms, and were consistent making both routine plays and amazing catches. Ken Griffey Jr. is another all time great outfielder. All three of these outfielders won gold glove awards and Ken Griffey was not only a great outfielder but also had great speed to steal bases and the ability to hit homeruns. Jimmy Rollins stated that the best piece of advice he ever received in baseball came when Ken Griffey Jr. Griffey told Rollins to always be coachable and to know his own abilities. These three all time great outfielder’s possessed great footwork, range and agility.
Kbands Outfield Drills
The Drop Step: This drill will incorporate the hips and the drop step of fielding a fly ball hit over an outfielders head. Using Kbands for this drill will give outfielders full range of motion, but will also enhance the ability to drop step and gain ground with power. The drop step enables an outfielder to move backwards. The point of the drop step is to open the hips and allow the outfielder to gain ground and sprint in that given direction. For this drill an outfielder begins by shifting with his right foot and taking a drop step back. Next he will shift his weight to the outside of his foot, turn his body to the right, and take off to sprint after the ball. The outfielder should run for 15 yards and then pull up jogging back to the start position. The outfielder should drop his head and sprint and then after 3 to 4 strides imagine picking up the baseball. They must be able to find the baseball on a dead sprint so it is important to turn their head towards home plate. Complete this drill by doing 6 resisted reps with the leg bands on each the right and the left side and then unclip for 4 additional reps without the leg bands. If the outfielder crosses his legs with the 1st step he will move laterally before he will move backwards. This will put the outfielder out of position for a ball over his head. Over extending on the drop step will slow acceleration. The outfielder’s center of balance and hips will be behind the extended foot and will not be able to roll over and accelerate into the sprint. A small drop step will allow the outfielder to move his hips over the ball of the foot and accelerate in the direction of the baseball.
Fly Ball Drop Step: The Kbands will help center balance, core strength, and leg drive. Coaches and trainers should incorporate the baseball in this drill by throwing the ball after the baseball player runs about 4 to 5 strides away from the starting position. The outfielder should drop his head and sprint. Just before he looks up the coach or trainer should throw the ball. This will allow the outfielder to begin learning how to pick up the baseball when moving at a dead sprint. Outfielders should run from heel to toe as the ball approaches the mitt. This will cause the outfielders head to stop bobbing up and down and smooth his eyes to catch the baseball. If the outfielder runs on the balls of his feet his head will continue to bounce and the ball will not be steady in his vision. This portion of the drill should be the same sequence as the drop step drill, 6 resisted reps with the leg bands and 4 non-resisted reps without the leg bands. Outfielders can complete both of these drills on the same day. Do 6 reps of the drop step drill with Kbands resistance to the right and 6 reps to the left. Then immediately do 4 reps without resistance to each side.
Athlete Performance Pack | Get Started Today
Kbands Training offers upper level training for all athletes. Our Athlete Performance Pack will assist baseball players in building speed, core strength and balance. Speed requires advanced training and the Athlete Performance Pack provides this advanced training. Adjustments can be made in arm action, core strength, and leg drive with proper training. The Athlete Pack comes with the core DVD agility speed training and everything needed to enhance athletic abilities. The core routine will help infielders, outfielders, and catchers become stronger and help them improve footwork. This program is a great way for athletes to experience professional speed, core, and agility camp training from the luxury of their own home. Trevor Theismann's program is designed to make athletes faster. The core building techniques will increase performance by putting each athlete's strengths together for an overall stronger more effective moving athlete. With every training session athletes will get a taste of what next level training is all about through agility drills and upper level speed building sprint work. Not only is the Athlete Performance Pack great for increasing speed but it is also a great way to save money.
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