How To Improve Hand Eye Coordination | Chaos Power Three Drill
Baseball, softball, football, and basketball are some of the major sports which require above average hand eye coordination. Many athletes can improve their hand eye coordination through sports specific training either individually or in a team setting. However, many athletes do not practice specific drills which teach how to improve hand eye coordination.
Utilizing drills specifically designed to increase hand eye coordination can be advantageous for athletes of any age or skill level. By learning how to improve hand eye coordination athletes will be able to improve athletic performance and switch focus from concentrating on hand placement to other more specific details in the training session or during competition.
If a ground ball is hit toward a shortstop the athlete has several things to concentrate on: where should the throw go, is the runner on third base going to advance, thinking about moving the legs and hips into proper position for a strong throw. Good hand placement and hand eye coordination will make for a smoother transition from the glove to the hand and into a sharper, more accurate throw.
Proper Body Positioning For Fielding Ground Balls
Athletes can use the universal athletic position as a good reference for proper body positioning when fielding a ground ball. Proper body positioning will help make lateral movements smoother while helping the body transition from a slightly crouched position into a good throwing position for a strong and accurate toss. Good body positioning is also crucial when performing drills designed to teach athletes how to improve hand eye coordination.
Proper body positioning involves slightly bending the knees and pushing the hips back, keeping the back straight, core engaged, and hands in a ready position. Many athletes confuse pushing the hips back (sticking the butt out) with lowering the butt as if they are performing a squat. The squatting position slows reaction time, whereas pushing the hips back allows the body to use its natural stretch shortening cycle and store extra energy in the quads and glutes. This added tension in the legs allows for a quicker, more explosive first step. This is the difference between snagging a hot grounder or allowing a runner to score.
Body positioning is important when learning how to improve hand eye coordination. This natural athletic position allows the athletes body to function naturally, allowing greater reaction times for ground balls or line drives.
How To Improve Hand Eye Coordination Using The Chaos Ball
Coaches and athletes using the Chaos Ball for this or any other hand eye coordination drill need to know how the Chaos Ball functions. On harder (concrete, rubber) surfaces the Chaos Ball will generate more spin versus a softer surface (artificial turf, grass). Therefore, if athletes are performing drills to increase hand eye coordination on a softer surface the person throwing the ball will have to actively create more spin with the ball when it is thrown. This allows for more movement, which in turn will create better hand eye coordination for the athlete performing the baseball drill.
To perform the baseball hand eye coordination drill athletes and coaches will need
a Chaos Ball and a partner or coach to assist in the baseball drill.
To help athletes learn how to improve hand eye coordination athletes will need to perform this baseball drill from several different positions which mimic game like scenarios. Athletes will begin by lining up 6-7 feet directly in front of the coach or partner with the Chaos Ball and assume a good fielding position. Athletes will not use a glove for this portion of the hand eye coordination drill. Athletes will begin in a neutral position as partners mimic a “hot ground ball” by adding bounce and spin to the Chaos ball as it is thrown. Once the athlete fields the ball they will quickly move into a throwing position just as they would in a game situation. Practicing drills with the same movements and mechanics which are used in a game will help athletes make smoother transitions and have greater body control while fielding in game situations. Athletes will perform 10 repetitions from the neutral, forehand, and backhand. Repeat these repetitions for 3-4 sets to complete this workout.
Athletes will perform the hand eye coordination drill in the same manner but will shift their body so they must backhand the ball. Athletes will then go back to the neutral position, open up their hips and perform the baseball drill from the forehand position. All different body positions for the hand eye coordination drill should be performed for 3-4 sets of 10 repetitions. Allow 40-90 seconds of rest between sets.
As athletes go through these baseball fielding drills it is important they do not stab at the ball as it comes to them. Athletes should think about receiving the ball instead of jabbing at it with their glove.
Adding Footwork Into The Hand Eye Coordination Drill
After performing the hand eye coordination drill athletes should grab a baseball glove and perform the Baseball Hands and Foot Speed Drill located in the baseball training section. This will help to further advance athletes by forcing them to focus on footwork as well as good body and hand positioning for fielding a baseball or softball. Perform this baseball drill immediately following the hand eye coordination drill.
Athletes should also utilize drills which challenge core strength and rotational power so they can continue to improve on throwing strength and accuracy as they work through their training session. Improving core strength and rotational power is critical as athletes field ground balls and must quickly come to their feet and deliver an accurate throw.
Athletes who want to continually improve on all aspects of their fielding should go to the baseball training section. Here athletes will find drills to continually improve their fielding, hitting, top end speed, and agility.
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