Quick Tips Presented By T-Ball America

Teaching T-Ball Today
Playing Baseball and Softball for Life!

T-Ball America is the national youth sports organization dedicated to the development of the game of t-ball. T-Ball America wants to make the game of t-ball fun for the participants as well as instill an interest in both baseball and softball so kids will continue to come back to play every year. Providing the resources to put kids in a position to succeed, T-Ball America offers a variety of programs and services. It is the center for information on how to improve existing t-ball programs and establish new ones. T-Ball America is happy to work with national, regional and local youth baseball leagues, civic or community groups, parents and kids.

* T-Ball America is a Youth Sports Club company.

Friday, May 31, 2019

Circle Fielding Drill

A big role in catching a flying baseball scientifically is something called ‘binocular vision’  which  some scientists think is not fully developed until age 7 or 8 in most kids. T-Ball coaches should recognize this and may be try alternate drills in practice to catching a fly like just having the player’s glove make contact with the ball.
Now the T-Ball Drill of the day:
Circle Fielding Drill
Goal
Learn how to catch ground balls
Equipment
You need anywhere from 2 to 4 soft covered balls you can you also use balls larger in size than the baseball size
Description
The circle drill is a fun drill that we use with older kids with their gloves however in t-ball it is recommended to do this drill without gloves at first. Not using gloves will motivate younger
t-baller’s to catch the ball with their hands and upon feeling the ball into their hands to squeeze it. I recommend the no glove theory as long as the balls used are safe. It is an excellent precursor to using gloves.
1. If your team has 12 players make a circle or form a circle about arm’s length apart.
2. To start the coach should take the position in the circle and when he says “go” the coach will throw a ground ball to another player in the circle
3. Upon either catching the ball or just stopping the ball whoever that the ball was thrown to will pick it up and throw it to another person in the circle
4. A player can throw to anyone in the circle but never to anyone right next to him on either side.
5. The coach will count the number of balls that players field cleanly.
6. The goal for all the players is to catch the ball cleanly. However the coach should emphasize that stopping the ball can be just as good an option.
Important tips
A challenge in this drill is to use two baseballs. Coaches can subdivide the players into two smaller circles. One of the advantages of having to multiple circles is that you can divide the players by ability and adjust the circle size the same way. Coaches can challenge the circle giving one point for just stopping the ball and two points if they catch it cleanly. Once the players are doing well playing this game without gloves, coaches can then have the players get their gloves. Coaches should make it a point that players have to throw overhand. Spreading the players out enough in the circle will help but not guarantee uncertainty about who will catch the ball if it goes in between two players.
Benefits
In games like the circle game t-ballers are learning to follow instructions and learning to keep their heads down when catching grounders.
For complete drill and more free tips go to:


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Teaching T-Ball Today!
Playing baseball and softball for life!
We put t-ball players in a position to succeed!

All of Marty Schupak sports instructional videos are available FREE, at
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Click here:  Schupak Baseball
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Schupak Baseball

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

T-Ball Tip- Stop The Ball Goalie Fielding Drill

This drill is from Marty Schupak's newest t-ball book:
T-Ball Drills: For Ages 4-7
Available January 1st, 2020
Stop The Ball Goalie Fielding Drill 
Goal
Teaching players to move their feet on ground balls.
Equipment
Cones and a bucket of balls and gloves.
Time
5-10 minutes.
Description
This is a drill kids love. Parents and coaches can use this drill in a team practice situation or at one’s home. It is so important that young kids even as young as tee ballers learn the concept of trying to keep the ball in front of them. This combined with the concept of moving their feet will become beneficial habits once they get older.
  1. Two cones are set up 10 to 15 feet apart depending on the age and ability of the players.
  2. One player will stand between the two cones.
  3. Coaches should have a player backing up. Either the player that just went or the players that is going next.
  4. The coach will throw ground balls between the cones, and the player will try to stop the ball with his glove. The object it to keep the ball in front of him. This is similar to a hockey goalie stopping a puck.
  5. Coaches can use a time limit or a predetermined number of balls.
  6. For t-ballers it is encouraged to use bigger balls at first.
Important Tips
It is important to adjust the width of the cones by age and/or ability. Coaches should toss the ball on the ground without a regular pattern so the players will not anticipate which side he is throwing the ball. Coaches should also allow the player to get somewhat set between each toss. We want players to move their feet toward the ball instead of just reaching for it. A great concept to teach young players is that many times successful fielding plays are made without catching the ball cleanly. Keeping the ball in front of them gives them almost as good a chance of making the play as catching it cleanly. Coaches can set this up as a competition which kids love giving one point for each stop. For older players this drill is a dual purpose drill combining the stopping of the ball with general conditioning. Doing this drill for an expanded period of time making the space of the cones wide can be very taxing physically for older players.
Benefits
Teaching players why it is important to move their feet toward the ball instead of just reaching for it. Also we are conditioning young players that stopping a moving ball can be just as effective as catching it.
All of Marty Schupak sports instructional videos are available FREE, at
Click here:  Schupak Baseball
Also available FREE through your local library at Hoopla.
Keyword: 

Monday, May 27, 2019

Color Ball Reaction Drill

This drill is from Marty Schupak's newest t-ball book:
T-Ball Drills: For Ages 4-7
Available January 1st, 2020

Color Ball Reaction Drill

Goal
Get players to react on visually recognizing the color of a ball.

Time
2-4 Minutes

Equipment
A plastic golf balls with 2 different colors.

Description
This may be the most advanced drill you’ll see for t-ball players. When I first introduced this drill it was for my team of 10, 11 and 12 year olds. I adjusted it a little bit for t-ball players so instead of catching the ball the player just has to slap or knock it down to the ground.  It is still very challenging for kids this young but don’t be reluctant to expose them to it especially the older kids on the team. This is an excellent at home drill that you should make your parents aware of. The two color plastic golf balls I used were white and yellow. I used the wiffle ball type with the holes in it.
  1. Take 2 different colored plastic balls about golf ball size.
  2. Say yellow and white using about 6 for each color.
  3. Explain to your players when the yellow ball is tossed, he has to use his left hand.
  4. When white ball is tossed, he has to use his right hand.
  5. The coach or parent will toss the ball underhand about 10 feet from the player.
  6. The player must recognize the color of the ball and knock it down with the appropriate hand.
  7. Go through using all of the balls.
Tips
Adjust the distance depending on the ability of the player. You can also help the player out tossing the ball extra high and if you see he is unsure, yell out the hand to use. You can try this drill with larger balls but make sure they are soft. If you want to challenge the better athletes (usually done after t-ball) designate one color for left, one for right and one to let go. As long as the ball is non-threatening and soft, there is nothing wring with letting hit the player’s body. Or you can do 2 colors for one hand and only 1 color for the other.


All of Marty Schupak sports instructional videos are available FREE, at
 Amazon Prime.
Click here:  Schupak Baseball
Also available FREE through your local library at Hoopla. Keyword: 
Schupak Baseball

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Cross Sports Drills/Basketball Throw


  When you start coaching your t-ball team, the gathering of information from your library, the internet and speaking to other coaches cannot be overlooked. Another source that I have used in my 25-year coaching career may surprise you. I have developed some of my most creative and popular drills from other sports. This is what I call "cross sports drills."  Whether it is a drill in football, basketball or even ice hockey, you may come up with a diamond in the rough that you can use with adjustments for t-ball and coaching baseball beyond t-ball. Here is an example: Using a regular sized basketball put your team in a straight line and if you can utilize assistant coaches or parents have three lines. Without a baseball glove, I have the first person in line in the ready position. I then roll or bounce a basketball simulating a ground ball that the player has to catch. The t-ball player is forced not only to catch the basketball with two hands but because of the size of the sphere, he or she will focus more on keeping their eye on the ball. Once the player catches the ball, he rolls it back to the coach and gets to the end of the line. The second or third time around, roll the basketball to the player's left of right and emphasize to try to field it in the middle of their body. This "Basketball Toss" drill works!

More quick tips are at: www.tballamerica.com

Related Resources:

All of Marty Schupak sports instructional videos are available free, at Amazon Prime.
Click here:    Marty Schupak Sports
Also available at the Apple App Store. Keyword: Schupak Sports


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The "T-Ball Skills & Drills" book is now available!

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

T-Ball Tip! 1-2-3!

Players will want to be challenged during the year. Coaches should have a repertoire of drills to use over the course of a t‒ball season especially in a logical progression. In the One Two Three Turn Drill, one or two players will have their back turned, approximately 10‒20 feet away from the coach. This space can and should be adjusted to skill and age level. The coach will designate one player to go first and throw a grounder and yell “turn.” The player must turn and pick up where the ball is and either stop or catch the ball in his glove.

 It is very important that a soft covered ball is used in this drill. Like all other drills with ground balls, reinforce that stopping the ball and keeping in front of you is just as effective.
You can separate the two skills of catching and throwing until the players are comfortable with turning around and catching the ball. This is a perfect at‒home drill that t‒ball coaches can share with the parents. It is an excellent drill for older kids, using the same idea, and throwing the ball on a fly. Again, coaches need to recognize ability and pair up like abilities in this drill.


Related Resources:
For the best baseball instructional videos FREE on Amazon Prime Video!
 Keyword: Schupak Sports
Watch every Marty Schupak baseball video free in your own home with your library through Hoopla! 
Keyword: Schupak Sports
Don't wait! Change the way you coach youth
baseball & softball with Marty Schupak's videos!

Sunday, March 24, 2019

T-Ball Tip: Miss The Tee

 From Marty Schupak's












A challenging exercise for young kids is for the coach or parent to tie a rope at the end of a bat or pole. The rope is then hung over the batting tee with room for a bat to pass between the tee and the end of the rope. The player must swing the bat without hitting the batting tee or the rope. As the player swings through the empty space, which promotes bat control and hand‒eye coordination, the coach will lower the rope, making the space even harder for the player to pass the bat through without touching either object. The coach can even have a player start with a big red bat and then switch bats. This is getting the batter used to the different sized bats. Coaches can even hold out a plastic bat instead of the rope contraption. This drill will condition t‒ball players to swing at the ball on top of the tee without hitting the tee over with their swing, which is common in t‒ball. It is very important to put them in a position to succeed the first few turns so make sure there is more than ample space between the rope and the batting tee.
Related Resources:


For the best baseball instructional videos FREE on Amazon Prime Video!
 Keyword: Schupak Sports
Watch every Marty Schupak baseball video free in your own home with your library through Hoopla! 
Keyword: Schupak Sports
Don't wait! Change the way you coach youth
baseball & softball with Marty Schupak's videos!

Thursday, March 21, 2019

The T Ball Game, Laugh It Up!

From Marty Schupak's



“The human race has only one really effective weapon and that is laughter.”
                                                                            ‒‒ Mark Twain
   In the course of a t‒ball season, there will be more funny things that happen during your games and practices than in any other baseball league and most other sports leagues you will ever be in. When a funny event happens as long as it doesn’t get out of hand, let it breathe and let the kids and parents enjoy it. Most of the times it is the parents who will be laughing and the kids will have no idea what the parents are laughing at. 
  When my middle son played t‒ball, I remember one player named Eric. Eric was one of the best hitters on the team and one of the few who would hit the ball solidly on his first swing usually well past the infield. The only problem was after Eric hit the ball, he would run to third, then second, then first. We would always be screaming at him to come back and go the other way. About two or three games through the season, we figured out that Eric was the only lefty hitter on the team and he thought right handed batters run to the right and left handed batters run to the left. We all got a huge kick out of this and Eric learned that all players run to the right or first base. 
  Another time I was an assistant coach and it was a really hot day. Toward the end of the game, the kids kept asking the coach when they could have snacks. Finally the coach said that after Lori hits the ball of the tee, we will all have our snacks. Lori would be our last batter in the lineup. Now at this time, the assigned parent for the snacks was setting up under a tree with drinks and something else for the kids. So Lori got up and hit the ball off the batting tee, and like everyone was under orders from a general or President, the whole team ran over toward the tree where the parent was setting up the snacks without any regard for what was happening on the field. Even more funny were the two kids on base at the time who ran off directly to the tree not even going around the bases. Lori, who hit the ball then just turned around and ran to the snacks. It was one of those true moments where all you could do was just stop and laugh.
  Another year on my oldest son’s team, we had a player named Peter. Now for whatever reason, Peter wanted to be aggressive when our team was in the field. If Peter was playing third base and the ball was hit to right field, Peter would end up there. If Peter was playing in center field and there was a short infield pop up, Peter would call for it and sprint in trying to catch it. So you see, Peter was one of those kids who had a kind of “Type A” behavior and needed a cup of decaf. You will have an endless number of humorous stories by the time the season is over. Bring your camera, cell phones, grandparents, and take notes. These are experiences you will love to remember. 
  As parents, we can be very sensitive if other kids are better than our own. T‒Ball is not the place to get caught up in this with all the competition that will follow in the years to come. And parents must remember that kids develop at differently.  Just enjoy everything that is happening on the field. 
Related Resources:
For the best baseball instructional videos FREE on Amazon Prime Video!
 Keyword: Schupak Sports
Watch every Marty Schupak baseball video free in your own home with your library through Hoopla! 
Keyword: Schupak Sports
Don't wait! Change the way you coach youth
baseball & softball with Marty Schupak's videos!