The beginning of our youth baseball season is here! We’ve been practicing inside regularly since January, and I could tell our 10-year-old boys were itching to get outside. That’s one drawback of living in the Midwest; baseball in January, February, (and sometimes part of March) is pretty much confined to a cage and a patch of turf (Other drawbacks include mosquitos and the smell of hog farms, but I digress . . . ).
So how did we keep things interesting for our kids during those months? How did we keep them engaged in the hard work that it takes in the winter to have success in the spring and summer? How do we make sure they embrace practice, so they can enjoy baseball, and not just this year, but for years to come?
We’ve tried a few strategies to keep the kids having fun AND improving. One thing we focus on is competition. Kids love to compete, so we’ve put together some drills that have them all fighting with each other to get better. It works in our group because the kids are all friends and handle it the right way.
The other thing we try to do is keep things fresh with different drills and tools, some of which we can discuss here over the next few weeks. That’s where the Magic Tee comes in. It’s a good way to work on those fundamentals, while at the same time being very new and interesting for kids to use. Again, getting kids to enjoy indoor practice in January and February? That’s magic.