3 Blocking Drills That You Can Do Without a Coach!
Do you want to make plays like this?:
While much of the focus in today's game is on stances and receiving, those elements of catching do not matter if you can't keep the ball off of the back stop. You should be working on your blocking ability frequently during drill work, bullpens, and live games. Typically, someone will be throwing a ball towards you while practicing. But, if you're like me (small town kid who trained alone more often than not), you need to find ways to improve your blocking movements and skill even without a partner. Below are three simple exercises you can complete:
1. Circle Blocks: All you need for this exercise is one baseball/softball. You will get into your blocking stance and block "around" the ball in a circular action. Complete at least 3 circles in each direction before moving on to another exercise. This is work on your lateral drive, angles, and blocking positions. To add another component to this drill, "recover" the ball and quickly get into a throwing stance to 1B, 2B, or 3B. See how fluid you can be!
2. Dry 3 Position Blocks: Position 3 balls in front of the plate down the middle, inside, and outside. Start in your blocking stance and complete 10-15 blocks to each ball. Again, add in a recovery and/or throw for more work. Your hands should be leading you into the block and you should maintain a good angle over the ball (not too high or low).
3. Block and Reset: This will be similar to the dry blocking drill above. Starting in a blocking stance, move into a block. Immediately after, explode up off of the ground back into your secondary stance. It is important for catchers to move quickly from the ground and be ready for the next play. Complete in rapid succession for a good workout, and make sure to block to different locations!
There are plenty of exercises you can create from the drills listed above. Even when you don't have a partner or coach, finding ways to get better is a necessary quality for those who want to get to the next level. These drills, and many more, are located in our catching program and remote training options. If you want to complete meaningful work or want to pursue a dedicated remote training schedule, feel free to reach out!