Purpose: To develop comfort when being hit by a ball pitched into the dirt. Practice catching scenarios should be done when coaching softball.
Procedure: As catcher, you are located at home plate with full gear on. The coach will stand about six feet away with several soft balls. Start on your knees in the blocking position with your glove and hand placed accordingly. The coach will throw five to eight balls consecutively. The throws will bounce in the dirt directly in front of you so that they bounce and hit you. Relax, and become familiar with being struck by a ball hit into the dirt- Breathe out as you are hit by the ball.
You may use softer balls take the fear factor out of skill development. Emphasize that the catchers are acting as walls, and that nothing should get through them. Watch for and eliminate any body tension in players. coach or another catcher. Additional padding may be used to protect the exposed part of the bare arm, especially if the catchers are feeling bare up at the time.