In 30 years of playing both amateur & professional baseball, I’ve been a part of many good and not-so-good practices. Here are few ways to evaluate if your baseball practice plans are good ones.
Plus, I’ve put together a simple, effective template you can use for your practices – and customize as needed.
#1 biggest mistake in baseball practice plans
Baseball practices don’t have to be long to be effective.
A time-efficient practice plan can cover everything that needs to be practiced in an up tempo, no-standing-around-and-wasting-time sort of way.
Don’t Waste Time, It Creates Bad Habits
Wasting time causes a very negative domino effect:
- I know that as a player once I start standing waiting for what to do next I start to get sloppy and sluggish, with my body and more importantly my mind.
- Once players start going through the motions they are not learning anything or getting better.
- Having quick and efficient stations keep the players engaged throughout practice.
If players go into each practice knowing they are going to work hard for a short amount of time, they will be mentally ready each and every practice.
The opposite is true if practices are long, drawn out and inefficient.
The Benefits of this Practice Plan
I came up with this basic practice plan from looking back on the positives of spring training during my time with the CO Rockies, NY Yankees, Pirates and MN Twins organizations, and then adapted it to be age appropriate for players older than 14 years old.
What I personally like about this practice plan is everything has a purpose.
- Playing catch has a purpose (90 to 150 feet are the most common distance of throws during a baseball game) that is why we practice these distances.
- Individual drills for position players focus on improving individual deficiencies.
- Team defenses along with infield/outfield has the team working together on defense.
- Batting practice rotations are quick and all aspects of offensive strategies are addressed.
- The defensive rotation during batting practice is a great place to work on anything that needs more attention (ie. Base running, extra ground balls, live reads off bat, double plays, throwing to bases, picking balls at first base, etc.)
Like I said before, I have been a part of many good and many poor practices in my playing career. Practices that resembled this downloadable, printable practice plan I’ve put together for you… (1) seemed to be more engaging and (2) our team gave more effort & learned more.
I believe that your team will feel the same way.
I hope this baseball practice plan is helpful for you. Enjoy!