Many coaches and parents will spend a lot of time and resources in ensuring that their players have the best equipment and gear for softball, and coming up with great training routines. While it is important for the players to have the best youth bats and many other essentials, it is also a great idea to add some fun to the training routine. Making the training fun makes it easier for the kids to learn, and it also helps them develop more interest in the sport.
And there is no better way to do this than with some fun softball games for kids that they can play after the regular or official training routine. Although there are several games that you can introduce to kids, the following five are the most interesting and productive.
Hit the Coach
Hit the coach is a fan kid’s game for both softball and baseball and it is intended to teach the young players accuracy.
How to Play
- Players should form a line facing the coach with each holding a softball.
- When the coach yells “begin” each kid should try hitting the coach with the ball as the coach tries to miss.
- The players can then run and collect their ball and try to hit the coach again from the starting line.
- Once the coach is hit at least three times the game is over, and the players can now make him do something silly like make funny animal noises.
Red Light Green Light
The Red Light Green Light fun softball game provides an easy way to help kids or beginners learn how to run while wearing their glove and with a ball in it. To play this game you will need to make sure that each of the players has a glove and a softball ball.
How to Play
- And you should start by having the players form a line while facing the coach.
- The drill will then begin when the coach turns to face away from the players and shouts “green light”.
- The kids should then run towards the coach at maximum speed while ensuring that the ball remains in the glove and the glove remains on the hand.
- Periodically, the coach should yell “red light” and turn back and any players that the coach sees moving is out.
- The first kid to get close to the coach and tag him out wins the game.
With this drill, the players will improve their batting speed and also learn how to hit balls to various parts of the field.
How to Play
- Players should start by a warming up by hitting at least 10 pitches from the cage.
- When starting the drill, the batter should stand in the box while the coach stands on the side.
- The coach should then toss two balls (each with a different color) to the player and yell the color you want the player to hit.
- Have each batter make at least 15 swings to improve split-second decision making and eye-hand coordination
The Don’t Miss Drill
Don’t Miss drill focuses on teaching the young players how to make proper contact with the ball, and how to place the bat correctly after the contact. For this drill or game, you will need some balls, a tee, and bat for each of the kids and one hula hoop.
How to Play
- The coach should start by dividing the young players into two groups.
- Fielders should play in their usual positions while the batters should hit from the tee in turns but focus more on making solid contact with the ball.
- After hitting the ball, the batter should then toss the bat on the hula hoop which should be placed next to the home base before running to first.
- Any player that misses the ball or knocks over the tee, it’s a strike, and after doing this thrice the player will be out.
- Players that do not place the bat precisely in the hoop after the hit and before running to the first are also out.
Catching flyballs is not the easiest thing for beginners but this interesting game can help teach it to young players. As kids get into softball, they are always afraid of looking up when trying to catch a ball. This drill will make things more comfortable for them.
How to Play
- Start by gathering small foam balls and have as many tall people (such as coaches and parents) in the fields as possible.
- The tall individuals should then stand over the kids and drop the balls from above.
- Kids should then look up with the hands raised and open to try and catch the falling balls.
- It is okay for the players to use both hands and not wear a glove at first so that they get used to catching with both hands before trying it with the glove on and with one hand.
Adding some fun games to softballs is the best way to teach kids, and also to help them develop more interest in the sport. In fact, most will learn way much more when playing fun games than when they are doing “serious” training. And so any experienced coach will always make games part of the training routine. There are also lots of games that you can introduce to the kids but the five above are some of the easiest, most interesting and productive.