My son can't hit off a kid pitch. Why?
Anonymous asked:My son can hit off the coach pitch but not kid pitch. He is 8 loves, the game but is getting aggravated at not being able to hit. Help!
Rick answered: Thank you for your question.
It is not unusual that kids have trouble hitting as they make the transition from coach pitch to kid pitch.
Quite often the problem is one of being afraid of getting hit with the pitch.
There is a safety factor built into tee ball and then coach pitch. Players can get comfortable and just enjoy swinging the bat. Chances are they will never get hit at those levels.
They step up to kid pitch and the first thing they notice is the pitchers do not throw many strikes. Generally speaking, if a player is pitching at this level, he is bigger and stronger than most of the others and has the "best arm" in the group.
Now the possibility of getting hit with a pitch becomes a reality. Players often start their swing by stepping away from the plate, or even backing up as the ball is thrown.
Many just stop swinging entirely as they focus on being able to get out of the way.
If that is occuring to your son, the best place to start is to teach him the correct way to get out of the way, or to absorb the inevitable ball that comes at him.
I have a page on my site,fear of being hit. It is a process for providing the player with a way to keep from getting hit, or at least minimize the hit they cannot get away from.
It takes time and patience; but eventually they gain confidence once they feel they have a plan for dealing with this situation.
Getting hit with a ball, whether in the batter's box, or fielding, happens as a part of the game. Correct fundamentals for how to deal with the situation allow players to move forward and concentrate on seeing the ball and hitting it, rather than whether they will get hit or not.
If fear of being hit doesn't seem to be the problem, then it is most certainly mechanical at age 8. Most times things such as stepping in the bucket, which causes their front shoulder and head to come out, making it so they do not track the pitch. The barrel of the bat drops down and creates a long, looping swing. If they do make contact, generally it is a pop up or fly ball.
Hard to say definitively without seeing him in action. Those are some things to look for.
Correction for the above is to get him stepping to his power position as the pitcher is loading to his power position to throw. That way he can step online, sraight at the pitcher.
Good luck as you move forward. It is an exciting time for both you and your son. You are building memories.
Yours in baseball,