Practicing doesn’t always have to be done with a teammate, friend or coach. While it certainly may be more fun, sometimes the grind must continue - even if it has to be solo. We’re going to break down a few drills that you can do when you’re eager to practice but by yourself.
Good, old-fashioned hitting right off of the tee. Tee drills are one of the most important exercises for improving your hitting skills. Grab your tee, baseballs and wood or metal bat, and start taking cuts.
TAKE IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL:
Power up your tee work. Instead of using a baseball, place a slightly deflated basketball on your tee. To get the most from this drill, make sure you put a proper swing on the ball and follow through with full power. This drill will help produce a stronger, more aggressive swing with a thorough follow through. Although power doesn't always equal home runs, this drill can turn ground balls into hard-hit lasers past the infield.
WORK ON YOUR SPREAD:
Focus on zone hitting during tee work. Zone hitting is hitting the ball where it is pitched. This drill will help you make purposeful contact with the ball and increase your spread on the field. Easily simulate a pitch over any part of the plate by placing your tee in different zones. Concentrate on sending outside pitches to the opposite field which is more effective than pulling an outside pitch. To work on your opposite field hitting, set up your tee on the back right of the plate if you're a right handed hitter or back left if you're a left handed hitter. This drill will help with your timing and barrel placement on outside pitches.
For this drill all you need is a wall, fielding glove and ball. Improving your scoop skills will greatly help your defense. Bad hops happen all the time on the field, so it’s always good to be prepared.
To complete this drill, start in your defensive position. If you’re a first baseman, set up as if you have one foot on the bag. Then throw the ball off of the wall and have it hop right before you catch it. If you play short stop, third base or second base, this drill can help you with those choppy ground balls. You will get the most out of scoop drills by concentrating on timing and glove placement.
Ground balls aren't always straight forward. Often times newer players have difficulty getting their glove all the way to the ground when going for a ground balls, resulting in the ball getting away. Use this backhand scoop drill to work on recovering these plays. Perform this exercise like a basic scoop drill, but get ready for the backhand grab. Once you are in position, bounce the ball off the wall and field the baseball backhanded. Be sure to get your glove to the ground when perfecting this technique.
GLOVE ON THE GROUND:
When fielding grounders, getting your glove on the ground is an essential skill. Our infield training glove is built to help players improve their hand-eye coordination. This shorter 9.5" glove forces you to bring the glove to the ball. Using our infield training glove with this scoop drill will improve your ability of getting the glove to the ball.
You don’t always need a catcher when you’re pitching. A net is the easiest tool for solo pitching drills. However with just a brick wall and tape, you can simulate a strike zone. Create a square with tape on the wall, make sure there is enough space for you to practice safely and get to work.
A proper follow through can make all the difference in a good and bad pitch. This bucket pitching drill isolates your arm movement and concentrates on follow through and form. You will need a bucket, baseball and a glove. You will be positioning yourself in a kneeling lunge while elevating your back foot on the bucket. Place the bucket at your back foot, then place that back foot on the top of the bucket with your knee firmly on the ground. Position your front foot as you would normally on your follow through. From this lunging position, rotate your shoulder towards your net or target, push up on your front foot and finish the second half of your pitching motion. Make sure to use proper arm form throughout the drill.
Use these solo drills to bring your game to the next level. Whether it’s hitting, fielding or pitching drills, there is always a way to improve, even if it’s solo.