Thursday, 31 January 2013

What To Keep In Mind When Shopping For Last Year's Sports Equipment

ByMichael B Miller

When it comes to sports equipment you can save quite a bit of cash by buying models that came out last year, or sometimes even the year before that. Unless you absolutely have to have the latest fashion there are few arguments against saving 60 percent or even more on most types of gear. Depending on your sport or hobby however, there may be a few caveats to keep in mind.

In terms of sports equipment that needs to comply with changing rules from various associations, you must of course double check to make sure that the product you are buying is indeed still considered legal.

For example, in 2012 the USSSA put out some new rules for what bats are eligible both in baseball and softball, requiring a type of new marking on all new bats. New regulations like this can actually render old bat models more or less obsolete.

However, I have a feeling that this isn't what's nagging most in the backs of people's heads when it comes to choosing between last years models and the spanking new ones.

I mean, even all aesthetics and fashion aside, what about all the new amazing technical features and capabilities the manufacturer have come up with since last year?

Makers of sports gear usually do a good job in their marketing, and make us doubt if we will really get by with a version that isn't the absolutely latest one available. After all, the newest one promises entirely new levels of performance, durability and comfort.

As I am no more immune to this kind of marketing than the next guy, I have developed my own rule of thumb for this:

"If you worry about the price tag you are probably not at the level where the slight technical improvements over last year's version will actually make a difference."

Like all generalizations there are of course exceptions to this rule. But for most amateurs I find it holds true more often than not.

Take downhill skiing for example. The technical advancements for skis have, along with certain rule changes, really meant that some professional slalom skiers that excelled only a few years ago have no chance at finishing on the podium in this year's competitions (FIS World Cup). At least according to the commentators on the sports channel I watch, a handful of athletes get a lot more performance out of their gear - and end up at the top of the leaderboards as a result.

An amateur skier, who goes skiing maybe a few weeks every year at best, will probably not gain very much - if anything - from the absolutely latest technology in skis.

And in terms of baseball and softball bats, there's no substitute for good coaching, training harder and practicing more.

In terms of bat selection you will probably do fine with last year's model, or even one that came out several years ago. Provided that it is legal for play in your association, and that the appropriate size for you is still available.

Michael Miller is a self professed softball nut that has a website dedicated to everything softball, including softball bat reviews. In the blog section he will regularly post softball deals of the month, where he lists softball equipment he have found that is currently available for purchase at steep discounts.

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Wednesday, 30 January 2013

4 Better Ways to Support Your Kids at Their Games

ByKevin Dt McDonnell

As my daughter Amy advances through her high school fast pitch softball career, I have found that the players are not only on different levels of skill, but the views the parents have, can be significantly different as well. As a former ball player who made it as far as college, played softball for years, served as an umpire for a year and even did some coaching, I find what happens off the field sometimes harder to deal with. We all have our stories, but just like we monitor and learn on the field, we have to sometimes monitor ourselves as well.

The first thing I noticed is really simple. As bad as an umpire may be, getting on his case never benefits the team, the speed of the game, or him improving his skill set. Through the course of a season, we usually come across that guy who, for whatever reason, wants to be the center of attention, and actually seems to seek out a confrontation. Luckily we can cheer or boo, then let the coach deal with it.

The second thing we can do is actually cheer and root for other parents' kids. We all want our kid to be the next franchise player but face it, most of them will never have the tools, put in the time, or even care enough to get to that point. If your child isn't the clean up hitter, hope that kid does do well. I actually was watching my kids J.V. game and as the varsity played on the field next to ours, a mother approached me. She pointed to the varsity outfielder and told me she hoped that kid would miss a ball and lose the game for the varsity so that maybe her kid could come up and play there. Meanwhile her kid struck out 3 times on the J.V. field. I would rather earn the position then be the better bad player. That also spoke volumes for the mother.

Grow up! Being a guy, I have recently found that the ladies are vicious sometimes. Amy seems to get along with most of the girls, however, two of the girls recently had an issue in the locker room, and now one has a cast on her hand and is out for the year. Some of the moms are worse! Every so often you come across a girl who might grunt or a team with a cheer that may push your buttons. When a mom on your side starts to make that noise or mocks the cheer it sounds so much worse. Don't do it! The other team may get under your skin, but you may be driving your own team and their fans nuts. We work our jobs all day working with others, but at night and on weekends, we can't turn into animals. Behave. I myself have never encountered anyone with an alcohol problem at a game, but this also needs to be monitored by yourself as well.

The last point is just to simply stay positive and have fun. If you get home after the game and your spouse is talking about you instead of the game, view your approach. Even with your back round as a former athlete, whatever the level, sometimes we may not be the best teachers, or our points may not translate to our kids. It's incredible how we lose ourselves and at the end of the day we feel spent because we got upset for a weird reason and didn't just enjoy the game. Good luck and have fun.

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Tuesday, 29 January 2013

As a High School Athlete, How Can I Stand Out at Tournaments and Showcases?

If you're a softball player, hit four homeruns in a game. If you're a basketball player, score forty points. But if you can't do some miraculous feat then you have to look for other ways to attract attention.

When you joined your team you were probably told that one of the advantages of being on the team was the fact that you would be playing in a lot of events and at a lot of venues where college coaches would be in attendance, like the regional and national tournaments and showcases sponsored by National Scouting Report. This, of course, would give you some good college exposure. But, like you mentioned, everyone on the team is good and with so many teams participating the college coaches there obviously can't scout everyone. And suppose they could. In the short period of time that they were able to look at you, would you be able to do something great that would make them want to recruit you? Chances of this happening would be extremely slim. That's why colleges don't come to these events to scout everyone there. And not even your coach can change that fact by passing out your team's roster with a short resume of each player. You must remember this, college coaches already know who they are going to scout before they go to these events. They don't go there to discover good players; they go there to evaluate them.

You have to sell yourself (or have someone do it for you) first before colleges will look at you. Then you have to convince them of your abilities. The first step is the most important and often the hardest and that's why many of your better athletes are turning to a professional scouting company to promote them. This is the safest and most productive way to ensure that you are on top of the college coaches scouting lists. Of course, college coaches evaluate and compare scouting services like they do prospects - some are better than others. A good scouting service will do a thorough preliminary "sales" presentation of you and your abilities to all the college coaches before they ever get to one of these events. Therefore, if they are even remotely interested in you they will spend some time scouting and evaluating you. This, of course, tremendously increases your recruiting chances when it is done over and over.

A good thought to remember is: Prepare to be scouted and prepare to be recruited. Don't just wait around and hope that it happens.

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Monday, 28 January 2013

7 Ways To Play Better Softball Today

BySandy Mcsmithhomer

How might one eat an elephant? You eat it one bite at a time! Actually, it is the same way you should go about undertaking any giant task. Taken in its entirety, it can look very intimidating. Break it down into its elements, into small bite-sized tasks, and the whole project looks possible. The steps can be larger or the steps can be smaller. However, they each must be easy enough and "do-able". When you have done all the small-task steps, you will look back and find out that now you have the entire task conquered. It's exactly the same way with how to have a solid defense. Here then is how you can approach the elephantine task of fielding a softball, in seven simple yet actionable steps.

Step 1. Always be alert.. This means that you need to be ready at all times. Take note of who the batter is and their position in the lineup. Obviously for 3rd and 4th place hitters you may want to take step back and when you reach the bottom of the lineup you may want to come in. Of course this depends on the overall skill level of the team you are playing... Neglecting this step will most likely lead to poor results.

Step 2. Know how many outs there are. This can be extremely important because if the ball is hit to you, you need to know the best place to throw the ball ).

Step 3. Make sure you keep your glove down. Which means that have to bend your knees. Additionally, it means that keep your head down and eye on the ball at the same time.

Step 4. Never turn your head. This will require some confidence in yourself...

Step 5. Be vocal. One of the important points to note here is the more informed the entire defense is, the smarter it will play. This is always crucial because knowing the game situation is half the battle..

Step 6. Do not be scared to take smart risks when the potential reward merits it..

Step 7. Remember the proper positioning when getting ready to cut the ball. Now you are nearly there! Don't forget, having a strong defense is very possible. Its just a matter of remember some key elements and remaining consistent..

When you take the steps explained above, the large elephant-problem you had will be "eaten up" one step at a time, "devoured" and sorted out. Follow these steps and you'll have success. Once you complete your project, reward yourself for a job well done and remember that anything is possible! Congratulations on your own victory! You looked the task in the eye and won, one small step at a time!

Sandy Mcsmithhomer is an avid sports fan and father of three children. He specializes in helping clients select the best softball bats and gloves to meet their needs. He also enjoys reading and aviation. Read his softball bat reviews to help you locate the best equipment for your team today.

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Sunday, 27 January 2013

Softball: 4 Important Areas You Should Consider to Improve Your Overall Game

ByAdam C Moore

Softball is a game that requires an all-round performance from your body. It is important to note that when you throw a ball or swing a bat, it does not only involve the use of your hands. Both require total body coordination for efficient movement and top-notch performance. Do you want to play softball even better? Here are important 4 areas you should consider if you want to improve your overall game.

Power Play

Every action in the game of softball requires power. Hitting, throwing, and running are all quick or explosive movements that require a good turn of speed and strength. So you need to develop your body strength. This is a basis for muscular power and an assurance that you will play better. It also lessens the risk of sustaining injuries.

Work on your shoulder and knees, buffer your torso power, improve your posture and neuromuscular abilities with well-conditioned exercises.

Flexibility

Players need to be flexible when it comes to the game of softball. A wider range of motion in the use of your joints, guarantees greater athleticism and again down plays the risk of injury especially in areas like the chest, calves, hips and hamstrings. You need to work on your flexibility with a good program that mainly focuses on your muscles. And do not forget to stretch after every exercise in order to keep your muscles in good shape.

Coordination

You should be able to move without difficulty and second guesses in softball. The main movements needed are hitting and fielding a fast-moving ball. You also need to be able to throw at definite targets and implement play while you are moving. Your hands and eyes should work with great precision and efficiency.

Coordination might be a natural ability. But it can be developed even further through a variety of exercises.

Great Balance

Sportspeople must have great balance. This is linked with coordination and improves your game especially when most plays are executed without a proper sense of balance. You can build your balance game with boards and stability boards. You might also need to put your body in an unsteady environment for adaptability and see how well you react.

Speed & Agility

Softball is a pacy game; you need to be fleet-footed to be successful. You also need to be able to change direction with a little break in speed and laterally accelerate to make up for any lapses. Even the slightest of improvements can mean so much in a competitive game of softball.

Training should include working on footwork, running strategies, quickness levels, stamina sessions and the ability to react explosively in the blink of an eye.

As a former baseball player, I have also enjoyed coaching my daughter's softball team every season. I also have a passion for bats and have created a few different websites on them including this one on the best softball bats, which includes pages dedicated to the top asa bats.

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Saturday, 26 January 2013

Girls Softball Drills: Pitching Machines Hinder More Than Help

Attention all girls softball coaches and hitters. This will explain why performing softball drills with pitching machines hinder more than help. Due to pitching machines, most girls softball  hitters never really reach their greatest hitting potential!

Girls softball teams use pitching machines because it is very difficult to throw strikes from a live hand in batting practice. A pitching machine is the tool most used in softball drills for helping hitters practice their swing mechanics. The reality is that the machine alters a players swing and timing more than it helps.

It is commonly known to most, if not all, baseball hitters and coaches, to stay away from pitching machines. Pitching machines do not have the same action that a live hand does when the ball is delivered in either sport. The spitting action that a pitching machine depicts when the ball flies out of it, is deceptive to the hitter. This deception adversely affects the hitter's timing and, ultimately, the hitters' swing.

Although baseball players and coaches know this intuitively, the message has not been made clear to women's fast pitch softball and girls softball. Women and girls softball relies on these machines far too much.  Most girls softball coaches have not figured out the proper way to use the pitching machines for softball drills or how to help players improve their confidence when using a pitching machine.

Softball drills for hitters should always be performed at a slower speed and the human pitcher or pitching  machine should be a good 3 to 5 paces in front of the pitching rubber. This is the only way to improve the confidence of the hitter. The hitter should have every opportunity to know what it feels like to connect with the ball efficiently; this type of set up will give the hitter that opportunity.

Unfortunately, in girls softball, the pitching machine is placed to close to the pitching rubber and the coaches set the speed of the pitch near the speed of what the hitter would see in a game. This does not help the hitter for 2 reasons:

1. The machine "spits" the ball harder when the machine is turned up and causes even more deception. Most hitters have to change the mechanics of their normal swing just to be able to contact the pitch. Because of this, hitters tend to throw their hands at the ball and do not have the time to adjust to the timing of the machine. This can only lead to improper use of their body and hips, not to mention, the hitter is practicing incorrect swing mechanics that will not be used during a game. Over time, continued use of pitching machines in softball drills will train a hitter's muscles to consistently swing the wrong way, even during games. This results in decreased levels of performance as well as confidence.

2. The hitters confidence goes down because most hitters swing and miss or just foul off the majority of the pitches when a machine is improperly placed and the speeds are increased. If you are a believer in achievement through visualization, then you should agree that a hitter who gets continuous images in their head of swinging and missing or bad hits, will not get better, but worse.

The key is to pitch batting practice out of a live hand if at all possible. Just pitching under hand close up with the L-screen at a slow pace will greatly improve the confidence and skills of the hitter. If you have no choice but to use a pitching machine for softball hitting drills, please adhere to the following proper use guidelines.

Proper Use Guidelines for Pitching Machine Drills
When using a pitching machine for softball drills, set the machine between 30-40 mph depending on the age of the player. Place the machine 3-5 strides ahead of the pitching rubber. This will simulate the right pace that a hitter needs to see and feel in order to get her rhythm, timing, and swing down.

Proper use of pitching machines will also improve a hitters confidence and enable the coach to instruct much more efficiently. There is no reason why female softball hitters cannot be just as consistent as male baseball hitters. From a training perspective, this is the reason why baseball players experience more success with batting average and slugging percentage than softball players do. Most baseball players practice off live arms and if a tosser is not available, the player, more often than not, knows how to use pitching machines properly.

Girls softball needs the machines because it is hard to throw strikes from a live hand in batting practice. Use them properly and hitting will improve dramatically.

Coach Huber's hitter training program for softball players and coaches shows you which drills are best, how to do those drills, how to hit for power without extra strength or effort and how to build confidence. You can read more about it at http://aboutsoftball.net or find loads of great articles on softball tips and drills at http://hubiemagicblog.com

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Friday, 25 January 2013

BBSing, Computing and Networking Before the Internet, and Softball in Tampa, Florida

Act I -- Setting The Scene

Computer geeks with baseball bats? Whose crazy idea was that?

Let us drop back in time to roughly 1987. There was no Internet, but we had the BBS scene. Some kind soul would buy a computer, hook it up to a modem running at 300 baud, and publish the phone number. Other folks who owned computers and modems would dial it up and post some stuff. Heavy on text, virtually no graphics.

Note that these aren't Mb or even Kb. These are b. When the BBSes began upgrading from 300 baud to 1200 baud, that was a major event for those of us who could afford 1200 baud modems.

Logging onto a BBS cost the same as a telephone call. Thus, the BBS would get a lot of local calls but not much long distance. CompuServe was the only nationwide service back then, but I was too cheap to use it.

I lived in Tampa, Florida, which had roughly 50 BBSes. For three months, one was mine. I wrote it myself, in BASIC, just to see if I could. Once I was sure it worked, I shut it down because I missed my old Commodore 64.

Yeah, I'm a computer geek. I remember fellow geeks like Steve Cramer, Jack Stevens, Keith Cooper, W.R. Caudle, Jim Moran, Don Johnson, Mark "The Zookeeper" Adams, Tandy Way, Anda Lee, Tom Preedom, P.J. Poyntz, and ET, initials for Eric somebody that started with a T. Plus many others who didn't run BBSes but who were regular users. Scattered BBS weddings and romances, but not many because most of these computer geeks were guys. And geeks.

Act II -- The Softball Tournament

One day, this here geek right here had an inspiration. Here we were, users of roughly 50 BBSes who had never met before, all living in the same city. Let's meet! Let's play softball, BBS vs BBS, and see who's the best.

We wound up with four teams. I coached MIS/Shamrock because nobody else wanted the job. One BBS was called MIS (Medical Information Service), and another was called Shamrock. It took both BBSes to generate a single team. No single BBS had enough users interested in softball to field a team by itself. All four teams were mergers.

The rules were simple. Just show up and play. Our opponent didn't follow the rules. A bunch of macho teenagers who practiced, assigned positions based on ability, and just tried to be quite professional.

My team didn't do that. Send me an email. What position do you want to play? It's yours. Oh, more than one guy at the same position? We'll rotate. I had lots of right fielders, and I was one myself. It's where everyone with no ability wants to play, because the ball never goes over there.

At age 24, I was the youngest guy on the MIS/Shamrock team. Earl was next. A jazz musician at Busch Gardens who turned me onto some great music, the only black man on the team, and just a damn good guy. A Facebook friend before I pulled the plug on Facebook.

I had Ed, from MIS, lined up as pitcher. But then Jim, the Shamrock sysop, showed up unannounced. (Sysop means it was his computer running the place, usually with software he wrote himself.) Jim also wanted to pitch.

Ed was a muscular sucker. Semi-pro softball player, as were some other MIS guys. Jim was a pear-shaped old dude. Ed, the only guy who resented me being coach in the first place, kindly stepped aside. He figured Jim could pitch the first inning and then he'd take over.

Jim struck out the first three batters on the other team. Inning over. What nobody knew was that, back when Jim was a military man, his team was all-European softball champions. And yep, Jim was their pitcher.

"Michael," said Ed, "let Jim keep pitching. I'll play catcher."

Okay. Our turn at bat. I did badly. Somebody or other on my team said, "Choke up on the bat." I HATE those words. I always have. Back in my school days, when I was the most unathletic kid ever, the one chosen after the fat guy, some bozo would tell me to choke up on the bat. I'd rather choke up on the screaming idiot. Anyway, I struck out. Choking up on the bat wouldn't have made any difference.

Next up, some of Ed's teammates from his semipro team. Sysop's kid, and some dude named Vince who I doubt can use a computer even today but who was deadly on a softball field. And Ed himself. Those dudes racked up three runs. I think we scored seven. Hard to remember.

Top of the second inning, Jim struck out three more guys. Bottom of the second, here's Michael again. The problem before, I'd decided, was that regulation-length bat. I went to the back of my old red Pinto and pulled out my secret weapon, a Little League bat. I used it to prop my hatchback open. It was battered and beaten, because little brother Barry had used it when he was an MP and then a cop. It had never seen action in an actual game. He used it one-handed to bust skulls. I used it two-handed in the softball game.

First pitch, wide right, and I didn't care. Wham! The ball flew funny, since I was using a Little League bat in an adult game. And I freakin flew to first base. As a student, I was slow on the sprint. But not today, baby! Age 24, and finally all my moves were coming together. Today a base hit, next week puberty.

Next up, the way I'd lined them up, the three semipro guys. Base hit, base hit, Vince's grand slam over the fence home run.

We would eventually beat this bunch of well-rehearsed teenagers 19 to 3. We quit keeping our own score after inning three of the seven, which is why we only scored 19.

Then a semipro team showed up because they had the field reserved for practice. We played against them and lost 2-1. Not bad for a thrown together bunch of computer geeks, eh?

Act III -- A Good Thing Falls Apart

There were some issues on the MIS/Shamrock team. Someone from MIS accused our pitcher of being a ringer. He was not. He ran Shamrock. If there were any ringers, it was Ed's buddy Vince.

Ed also thought I should yank The Punisher out of right field. The Punisher was 6'9" and big-boned. And stocky. And, let's just come right out with it, fat. And slow. And he let a ball or two get away. But when Ed questioned me as coach, I decided to leave The Punisher in all game. The Punisher tired easily, but I didn't care. Jim was pitching. There wasn't much else for the rest of us to do, except hit the ball and score more points than Peyton Manning.

Ed also asked, "Who invited the nigger?" That would be Earl, my mate, and very much a BBSer. Damn right I invited him. Strike three against Ed.

Finally, Ed had the audacity to claim that MIS won the game, not Shamrock. Pitcher Jim, The Punisher, Earl, and I all came from Shamrock. Plus, Ed resented that I was the coach of this misfit bunch. So that would be strike four.

The best-ever team in Tampa BBS history split itself in two. Another day, another contest.

The MIS team was full of youngish macho hunks. Shamrock, aside from Earl and myself, boasted the over-40 crowd. Both teams had picked up a few players from the team we vanquished, since they also used Shamrock and MIS anyway. I coached against embittered Ed, and I let him keep ringer Vince.

I got a base hit every time, but I was just a minor player in this drama. I stayed in right field on defense. And I coached, even though I'm a football junkie. I don't remember the final score, but I know we kicked some he-man butt that day. I suspect that when the game was over, and everyone had gone home, Ed broke down and cried.

Michael LaRocca has edited over 300 published novels and textbooks since 1990, along with thousands of white papers and other shorter works. Learn how he can help you at http://www.michaeledits.com

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Thursday, 24 January 2013

Competitive Fastpitch Pitchers Don't Just Have a Strong Arm

ByRachel A Gavin

As any young or old person begins their journey as a competitive fastpitch softball pitcher, there are many things about the sport itself to keep in mind. Good mechanics, the mental aspects, and physical fitness are the most important areas. I will discuss each one in detail in order to portray a better picture of what success should look like.

First, every pitcher needs to learn good mechanics which should start with the basic fundamentals. This is where drills come in. Drills are taking each part of the pitching wind-up and breaking it down to simplify the whole process. You should begin with simple wrist snaps. Wrist snaps are simply flipping the ball with your throwing hand while trying your best to get back spin on the softball. After wrist snaps, move to the "K" position. In the "K" position, you will simply stand with your body in the shape of a "K". Your toes will face perpendicular to home plate with your body slightly angled towards your catcher. Your Throwing arm should be outstretched pointing to the sky and your glove hand pointing towards your catcher. Once in position, throw the ball down as fast as you can snapping your wrist (like from the previous wrist snap drill) right as it passes your back leg, and release the ball. Once you begin to feel comfortable with this, move on to walk throughs. Walk throughs are simple. It is basically the final pitching motion with a little extra step in the beginning. Do a couple of these to loosen up, and remember to incorporate the first two drills. Your mechanics will surely improve in no time with practice and patience, which leads me to my next point.

The game of softball is incredibly mental. Many things are required to be good at pitching a softball, but a steady mind is crucial. Having patience can be incredibly hard, but going through tough times as you learn will help in the end. Mental toughness can be gained merely through practice. Practice with a catcher until you get comfortable on the mound. After that, move to live batting practice with the boys or girls on your team. Having a live batter helps get the feel for what a real game situation would feel like. Then of course, when you feel comfortable enough (and your coach feels comfortable enough with you) you will move on to an actual game situation. Nothing builds confidence like a few good games against decent teams. Naturally, you will encounter bad games as well, but remember this is also what builds that poise you need to succeed. Those bad games will teach you all the things not to do, and the good ones will teach you all the things to do. Being able to step onto that mound with confidence and a slight edge of cockiness will put out results I guarantee.

Finally, I will talk about having that endurance you need to strike people out. Pitchers have to work harder than any other person on the field, so having the strength to go a full game is very important. Cardiovascular workouts are a must. Most pitchers should run at least one mile every day, and then run again after every time they pitch. Other cardio exercises I would suggest are things such as ladders, sprints, leaps, etc. Next, you will need to weight train. While still stressing cardio, you can train on weights and build up strength which will not only make you last longer but also help improve the speed of your pitch. I believe weights are important in every sport, but different sports weight train differently. In softball you will still emphasize endurance but while building muscle mass at the same time. Do light weight and a lot of repetitions. This simply means for example, instead of doing four sets of twenty pounds, do eight sets of ten pounds. This gives you a wider variety workout all in one and builds long, lean muscle. Now for the areas of the body to focus on, we need to incorporate everything. Some theorize that legs are the most important, some say arms, some even say wrist. I personal believe it's all just as important as the other. Your core is frequently left out, but it along with legs, arms, wrists, buttocks, and neck are all important components. You are using your whole body to pitch, so it is all vital to be successful.

You now, have the three main areas to focus on to become a successful fastpitch softball pitcher. Good mechanics, the mental aspects, and physical fitness will lead to lucrative career if you put in the hard work and dedication required. It's not easy being a pitcher, but being the hero of a team is well worth all you put into it.

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Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Softball Power Hitting

Girls Can Hit With Just as Much Authority as Boys With the Right Swing Mechanics
in girls' softball is less focused upon than baseball power hitting and there is no reason why girls cannot hit the ball with more authority and start hitting just as many extra base hits than the guys can. Some say that girls do not get a fair shake from their coaches who may subconsciously think their skills as hitters' are so far less, that they are not even getting the opportunity to learn power hitting skills. This is true for the most part, as girl softball players are mostly taught just to make contact and put the ball in play. What the softball community does not realize is that women have far greater of a work ethic than men when it comes to competitive sports, and they will improve just as fast on something once their focus is directly on the target.

Why Are There So Few Softball Players Who Are Good at Power Hitting?
There are very few power hitters in softball, but if you study the ones that can really hit for consistent power you will notice a few different aspects to their approach than what is regularly taught. Their ability to lift balls out in the outfield consistently gives them an edge to power hitting and getting more hits. Power hitters really launch their swing from their back leg and use a lot of muscles in the buttocks and hips. These types of hitters rarely leak forward and transfer their weight to the front foot. Their swing plane is not downward like what is taught, and many of them look like major league baseball hitters when they swing. If you look at the similarities of the Women's' USA Olympic Squad and major league baseball swings, they are not far off.

How to Improve the Popularity of Softball.
This makes one wonder why then the girls' softball players swing is taught so differently from the travel to college levels. Once women's' softball changes the focus from just making contact to a more level headed power game, the game is going to be twice as fun to watch and the girls are going to have a lot more fun. Any time you have a bat in your hand, the energy of the game lies in that stick. Unfortunately, for girl's softball, the popularity of the game can be stronger if the game was not so defense oriented.

The game has a chance to be as popular as major league baseball someday, but only if there is more excitement with the bats. It can happen because the girls have the energy for this to happen, and their work ethic is out of this world. More coaches have to give them the chance to open up their swing more. It is time for softball players to open up to this and take the game to the next level.

There are online resources and information for softball players and coaches to improve power hitting. The Hubie Magic Hitting System has shown consistent results for more than 10 years. You can learn more at http://hubiemagic.com and http://hubiemagicblog.com

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