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momto2js
03-12-2012, 04:17 PM
Sorry, I'm encrouching but I don't know where else to turn. I'm coaching my son's t-ball team this year and need some ideas. I have been to a few clinics, but they all seem to be way to advanced for my kids. At what age is it reasonable for most kids to play catch??

I'm thinking about building basic skills like knowing where first base is, developing a nice level swing, but the thought that my 5 year old is going to throw a ball at another 5 year old is complete nutty??

Any great websites for coaching really young kids??

Cinderella's Fella
03-12-2012, 07:05 PM
Sorry, I'm encrouching but I don't know where else to turn. I'm coaching my son's t-ball team this year and need some ideas. I have been to a few clinics, but they all seem to be way to advanced for my kids. At what age is it reasonable for most kids to play catch??

I'm thinking about building basic skills like knowing where first base is, developing a nice level swing, but the thought that my 5 year old is going to throw a ball at another 5 year old is complete nutty??

Any great websites for coaching really young kids??

I don't have any advice, I just wanted to tell you Great job taking on the coaching job. You Da Man Girl!

cj9200
03-12-2012, 07:33 PM
No intrusion at all. I coached T-Ball years ago. Sorry, don't know any websites. To me it was more intuitive. You are talking basic, basic fundamentals. A win is when they hit the ball and run to first base (not third). They are more interested in the snacks after the game.

Teaching them how to hit, throw and catch no matter what the results is part of T-Ball. The main thing is to let them have fun and enjoy the game. 5 YO's can play catch together. It may not be pretty but they get the hang of it with practice and they have fun doing it. Near the end of the season, our Shortstop cleanly fielded a ball and made a perfect throw to the First Baseman who caught it. I was more excited then they were. Little successes mean a lot to them and you.

Congratulations on taking this on and enjoy it. Also make sure the parents bring good post game snacks. Let us know if you have any other questions.

richmo
03-13-2012, 08:05 AM
As PP's have mentioned, the snacks are the biggest thing. Seriously, make sure there's some kind of schedule as to who brings snacks/drinks when.

There's not a lot you can do teaching "fundamentals". Do things like getting them used to running bases the right direction, not being afraid of the ball and very basics of bat swinging. If it gets too complicated, you'll lose them. Also, when they're in the field, at this age, the best thing you can do is to get them to pay attention. Of course, work on throwing and catching, but you're going to find wide differences in ability and you'll (and other parents) will have to work with kids individually.

The main things: make sure they have fun, pay attention and arrange the snacks.

jonhiras
12-19-2013, 12:41 PM
Actually, some parents starts to get their sons a tee ball at age 3. 5 is a reasonable age to teach him tee ball drills (http://statsintl.com). There's still no direction in a 5yrs old boy throwing ball, you should be able to teach him that and I'm an expert in this, I can give you hitting tips but pitching for a 5 year old is definitely not my thing.

Goofy + 3
12-23-2013, 10:50 AM
I've coached my kids for a few years. I agree snacks are going to be way more important to them than anything else. Another big draw for them will be playing in the dirt when they're supposed to be paying attention. Do you have an assistant coach? You'll need one. Someone needs to manage the chaos in the dugout while you're coaching first or third.

Your reluctance to have them throw to each other is understandable. They should be playing with compression balls or "reduced injury factor" baseballs. They're the same size as a regular ball but more squishy. My son is 6, was probably the best player on his team (bragging, but it's not like he had much competition), but he is lousy at throwing and catching. We had to practice that, so when we go out in the yard to play catch, I make him wear a helmet with a faceguard. It allows him to focus on what I'm trying to teach him without fear of losing teeth. Plus this way, I can throw harder, watch him take one off the faceguard, and say "See? I told you to get your hand up!" without feeling like a horrible dad.

As for what to teach, don't get too ambitious. Teach them to get the guy out at first. It would take you all season to get across the concept of a force out at any other base. Also teach them to catch a ball with their fingers up. A ball below their knees- fingers down. Everything else- fingers up. This sounds dumb, but if they can get that straight, it greatly reduces the chances of catching a ball in the mouth. All the time I see kids trying to catch a ball above their shoulders with their palms to the sky. Bad idea.

Your practices shouldn't be more than an hour so you won't be able to get much done no matter what. They'll only see one or two pop ups all year, so just focus on grounders. Run them through that and batting practice and do that all year. Anything more advanced could be a waste.

Goofy + 3
12-23-2013, 10:51 AM
I just realized I answered a question that is almost 2 years old.