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Friday, February 18, 2011

Baseball Exercises

Baseball Exercises
By guest author: Jim Bain

The thought of baseball exercises being important to young baseball players doesn't always get the proper amount of attention from coaches and parents that it should. It's somewhat understandable, as one equates youth with unlimited energy and abilities, but training should begin as early in a player's career as possible.

Ahhh, did you catch the word training instead of exercises? The difference in words, although they are interchangeable, shines a different light on the subject.

Players are never too young to begin a strengthening and conditioning program. In fact you are doing a disservice to the player waiting until he/she is 11 or 12 years old, because proper strength and muscle building requires time to develop and the longer you wait...the longer it takes for the player to catch up.

Let's look at some exercises through the terminology of training and Baseball specific.

Wind Sprints are a tried and true method of developing endurance as well as speed. Endurance is required to not only play 7 innings of baseball, but to be able to play 7 innings at peak performance level. Does an inside the park home run count for less in the 6th inning than the 1st? With a 0-0 score it is of equal importance, but if the level of performance has shriveled due to fatigue, the 6th inning run may not score.

Sprints in sets of 10, 30 to 40 yards in length will have the player(s) embarking on a quality endurance program. Having the players run the drills as a unit, such as pitchers together, catchers, infielders, etc. will also build a team unity which is invaluable during the course of a long season.

Squeezing racquetballs or tennis balls, is an excellent exercise for developing wrist, forearm and finger strength. The drill can be performed by the player anywhere at anytime without the need for a partner or any special weather conditions.

One may not realize, but strong fingers are a huge part of swinging a baseball bat. Think about it. You don't hold the bat in the palm of your hand, at least you better not, where there is no strength. You firmly clasp the bat in the fingers using the palms to merely keep the bat from falling out of your hand.

Strong wrist and forearms, which operate in conjunction with the hands, are the strength mechanisms which yield the snap and power of the wrist when swinging a bat or throwing a baseball.

These are but two exercises, or rather training exercises, which a young player needs to begin as soon as possible. Strength, endurance, team building and much more are accomplished through drills, exercises and training which is started young, with the intensity level increased as the player develops.

Jim ( Coach ) Bain is a former Minor League Player and Coach of Youth Baseball for over a decade. He has drawn from fellow successful coaches' experiences and combined them with his own extensive experience to create a Baseball Teaching Website. The site is packed with 100s of tips, drills, history and instruction on how to play and coach the game of baseball.

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Hello Baseball Friend,
I welcome any comments or suggestions. If you have a question or a topic that you would like to read about, please leave a comment and I will try to address that topic as soon as I can. Good luck in the coming season!
Have a great day, Nick