Catching a Baseball: Learn How to Catch a Baseball Perfectly?
Whether thrown at a high speed or at a low speed catching a baseball can turn out to be a tricky practice. This is because there are so many external factors that are involved such as speed and direction of the wind, the direction of the throw, and individual factors. Catching a baseball requires good visuomotor coordination and this might be the reason why some people are born catchers while others have to train hard in order to be good catchers. Here are some tips that can help you become a good catcher or improve your baseball catching skills and also teaches you how to catch a baseball? Scroll down to know more.
Method 1: Catching the Ball – How to catch a baseball
Tip One: Glove Size.
It is important that you know your glove size. Don’t go for big baseball gloves if you have small hands and likewise don’t go for small gloves if you have big hands. The reason is big gloves are like to slide off on small hands while small gloves on big hands may be quite uncomfortable and this may limit the movement of your fingers. To avoid this, ensure that your coach, trainer or parent gets you a glove that fits.
Tip Two: Body Position.
The position you are in when the ball reaches you also determines whether you will catch it or not. Always ensure that you are in a ready position better known as “attack position”. The ball should not find you in the off position if this happens you may end up being hit on the face or worse.
To achieve the attack position;
- Spread out your legs evenly. This will ensure that your body weight is evenly distributed.
- Lean forward. Leaning forward will activate your core muscles.
- Position your neck. This will help you see what is coming (the baseball).
Tip Three: Eyes on the Ball.
This does not only involve focusing on the ball after it is thrown. Your eyes should be on the ball at all times from the moment the thrower has the ball in his hands to the moment the ball reaches your glove.
You should also ensure that you mark the hand the thrower is using. Is the thrower using his right hand or left hand? This will help you to be in the right angle of attack when the ball reaches your side.
Tip Four: Follow the Ball.
In almost all cases the thrower won’t throw the ball directly at you so it is upon you to adapt to the direction of the throw. The direction of throw may change within seconds, especially if there are winds or if the thrower is a professional. It is therefore important that you be very flexible in terms of your movement. Don’t fix yourself in one place.
Tip Five: Hand Position.
Aside from having the right glove size you also have to ensure that your glove is well positioned before and after the ball is thrown. Your gloves should not be positioned directly in front of your face as this may prevent you from seeing the incoming ball.
- Position your glove in front of your chest.
Ensure that your glove is positioned outwards from your body and should be facing the direction the thrower is in. You can change the position of your glove depending on how high or low the ball is thrown. The trick to doing this is adjusting your wrist position with reference to the level of the throw.
Tip Six: Grab the Ball.
If you positioned your glove correctly the ball will come flying straight into your glove. This is the moment you move your fingers in order to get a hold of the ball using your gloves.
Method 2: Enhancing Catching Skills
Going for ground balls can be very challenging especially if they hit the ground several times and change the trajectory with each hit. The only way to catch a ground ball is by going after it this means that you will have to change your body position to suit the ball’s flight path.
- Lower your body. This will reduce the distance between you and the ground. The best way to this is by slightly bending your knees.
- Stretch out your hands towards the Ground. It is a ground ball so the only way you’ll catch it is by stretching out your hands towards the ground.
The diving Technique.
At times no matter how prepared you are the ball still doesn’t come your way. The only way to catch such balls is by diving for them. Diving can be very dangerous especially if you fail to do your calculations right. To perform a successful dive:
- Put a lock on the ball’s flight path.
- Leap from the ground with your hands stretched towards the ball.
Getting a lost ball.
In the event that you fail to catch the ball, you still have a chance of making things right. To do this you will need good body reflexes.
- Locate the Ball and pick it.
- Quickly throw the ball to the right player.
Footwork is Key.
For you to be a good catcher you must have good footwork otherwise you may end up tripping yourself. To achieve good footwork;
- Never cross your legs. This can make you fall on your face.
- This involves taking off and chasing the ball.
- Do some Squats to achieve strong leg muscles.
Method 3: Catching Stand Balls
- Know Each Player. This involves studying the players and knowing their dominant hands. This will help you know where to position yourself for a successful catch.
- Attend Matches. Going to various matches will help you learn new baseball catching skills.
- Always carry your Glove. Having your gloves at all times will keep you on your toes at all times because you will use every chance you get to practice your catch.
- Be active. Just like the players in the field you should also be active. This will help you see and catch all stray balls that may come your way.
- Catch it. If one of the players messes up and the ball comes flying your way don’t hesitate to catch it. Ensure that you don’t cause harm to yourself or others during the catch.
So, we hope this article will help you learn how to catch a baseball and also help to know more about Baseball. If you have any suggestions or queries feel free to mention in comments and stay in touch to know more things about Baseball. See you soon.
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