Front toss an effective training tool

Ok, that may not seem like a big revelation at first. But there’s more to it. Bear with me.

During the off-season, we worked with our hitters in small groups in the batting cage. We worked a lot off the tee to build swing mechanics and try to correct major problems. Then we would finish with front toss, using real balls. The distance was roughly 8-12 feet. I would throw using a windmill motion, then duck behind a protective screen as fast as I could. Mostly I got behind it, although Jessica nailed me in the shin once and it still hurts when I kneel down. But I digress.

Anyway, as the HS season started, most of our girls did pretty well. But the further they got away from it, the less effective they became as hitters. When we finally got them back for the summer we again used front toss as a main form of hitting practice and the hitting went up. We haven’t done it much lately and noticed a drop, so last Thursday it was back to the batting cage for some front toss.

It may have been coincidence, but this weekend we hit .300+ as a team en route to a tournament championship, with lots of doubles and even a few triples on fields with a 200 foot fence. No one went yard, but several came close. Two of the opposing coaches commented on how well our team hit. Not so much because our first five hitters did it, but because we did it all the way through the lineup.

There are a lot of factors involved, of course. But it seemed like that front toss practice, time consuming as it was, made a huge difference for us. I’d highly recommend it to get the timing, and the feeling of hitting real balls. And if you’re quick enough, you can even correct some major flaws as you duck behind the screen!

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