When Training a Catcher Think of Building a Wall
By Jamie Davison, Rockford Thunder Catcher
Catcher is possibly the hardest position on the field to play because so much is required, and all of it is performed from a very awkward starting position, the squat.
When I work with catchers, especially for blocking and throwing to bases, I believe repetition is the best way to develop a consistent, top-notch catcher.
One way to get quality reps for the catchers is with what I call the “line drill.”
Place six balls in a straight line, about a foot apart. The catcher starts at one end of the line and pretends to block the ball. She immediately pops back up out of the block to her squat and immediately blocks the next ball. The whole process repeats itself until that catcher has gone down and back.
I use this drill as a challenge to my catchers by timing them every two weeks to see if they have gained any quickness.
I always preach: “Catching is all about foot quickness.” They definitely get sick of hearing it, but it is important that they use the correct the technique, since any extra movement will take more time.
If a young catcher does this drill twice a week then their muscle memory will be exactly where it needs to be in a game! I also like to use it as part of a catcher’s physical conditioning program.
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