What can parents do to help their kids in baseball?

Parents all the time ask us what can they do with their kids to help them in baseball. Aside from the game of catch in the backyard, what is there to do to help promote fundamental drills and sound mechanics while having fun with kids?

Essential Ideas to Keep in Mind

1. Have Fun

Have Fun with Your Child!

Have Fun with Your Child!

Life moves way too fast and so does our time with our kids. So be patient, laugh together, and enjoy the moment. You will be surprised that when you make it a priority to ‘have fun’ that your relationship with your child will also grow. If you think back to your fondest memories with your parents as a kid, was one of them playing a sport with them?

2. Drills and Activities should have an objective

Too often do we teach things without identifying what our objectives are in the task. By identifying our objective, parents and kids will be on the same page, frustration will be less frequent, and ultimately parents will be able to measure and see how fast their kids develop.

3. Use Baseball as a teachable tool

We have experienced the moment when a player gets hit in a mouth trying to catch a ball or when a player misses hitting the ball, only to follow up by crying or pouting. At that moment, parents have a great chance to teach their kids how to act, how to let out their emotions, and truly define what parental expectations are.

BFTGU Backyard Activities

Simple, easy, and fun baseball activities that you and your child can do in the backyard! Most of these activities are rooted in our BFTGU’s Baseball Teaching System-  Early Innings baseball drills for 5,6,7, and 8 year olds

These activities will help you and your child in the following areas:

  • Reinforce and Supplement the Drills from Practice
  • Build a stronger relationship with your child
  • Develop an edge over future competition

BFTGU Backyard Fielding Drills, Activities, and Tips

  • “Hot Box”
    • Setup – Needs at least 3 players-two fielders and one runner, layout two “bases,” use a softer ball (i.e. tennis ball).
    • Game – Runner tries to run in-between fielders without being tagged out. Set amount of outs (usually 2 to 3 outs) and when it is reached switch roles.
    • Skills – teaches how to catch (receive the ball), tag a runner, how to move in a rundown, proper throwing mechanics, and of course very fast pace and fun!
    • Fielders can use a glove or no glove. Using no glove will teach soft hands when receiving. If glove is used, teach to receive the ball fingertips up and two hands to the ball.
    • Fielders can work on both swipe tags and lift tags
    • When a Fielder throws the ball, he/she should circle back
    • Make sure Fielders square their hips and feet to target when they throw.
  • “Wall Ball”
    • Setup – at least 1 players, solid wall (i.e. concrete or brick), tennis ball works great!
    • Game – with 1 player, player throws the ball at the wall and anticipates where the ball is going and then approaches the with “left-right” footwork and in a triangle position (two feet and hands).
    • Game – with 2 players, player throws the ball and the other player receives the ball with above technique. If the ball is misplayed then the thrower gets a point. Then the fielder becomes the thrower and the roles are reversed.
    • Skills – teaches how to catch (receive the ball), footwork and technique, coordination, concentration, reflex
  • “21″
    • Setup – Needs 2 fielders
    • Game (Advanced drill) – Playing catch to targets. Each thrower is trying to throw the ball at the other players chest and/or head. If the receiver catches the ball in front of their chest, the thrower is rewarded with 1 point. If the ball is caught in front of the face, then the thrower is rewarded 2 points. Each player alternates roles every time the ball is thrown to the partner.
    • Game (Beginner drill) – Instead of throwing to the chest and face, the receiver should place their gloves to one side or the other. Points are awarded based on the thrower’s ability to hit the correct target side, then its 1 point. If the thrower is able to hit the glove without the receiver movie it, then 2 points are awarded.
    • Skills – Teach ready, break, throw throwing technique. Starts the idea to throw to spots rather than just “throwing” without a purpose.