Slap hitter are no marginal players in softball. In fact, they are extremely important, as their role is to slap the ball to the left side of the field and run to the base to pressure the defense. The left – handed people don’t have to try too hard, and right –handed ones have good hand – eye coordination. The qualities of a good slap hitter should be velocity, speed, coordination and balance. Like everything else in life, this can be practiced to make it perfect. Here is what you need to do to slap hit a softball.
What you need
You need a bat and other players, obviously. If you want to practice alone, you are also gonna need a tee and some sort of a catch net you will hit balls into, or an open field.
1.First step – Footwork
First, get into a good stance. By that I mean you should stand in a position with your knees slightly bent and place your feet toe to toe, front foot in front of the back. You need to have a good grip on your bat and lift your hands with the bat in them up above your head. The next thing to do is to put your left foot and leg forward and cross it over your right leg. You need to do the latter because you want to go after the pitcher, not after the first base.
When you make contact with the pitcher, then move your right leg towards the first base, not before that. You can practice this by visualizing the players and doing the footwork, but it’s best that you do that while in play with the other players. After that, you run. You run as fast as you can, and that is also something that needs to be practiced. You can practice the running in two ways – one is just practice plain running, to gain strength and condition. You can do this wherever you feel you are the comfortable. The second way is to practice running while having a goal of the game in mind. It’s best to combine both ways, as both of those ways will come in handy in softball.
2.Second step – hands
When you cross your back foot over your front foot, make a tight grip on your bat, still holding your hands and the bat in them over your head. Since there are two types of slaps in softball, your hand positioning on your bat is gonna be different for each type of slap. There are hard and soft slaps. For a hard slap, your hands should be place near the lower end of the bat. That way, you will be able to utilize more power to the slap. For a soft slap, place your hands closer to the high end of the bat, but not too close, as you will not be able to slap the ball at all if you do that. Just a little move towards the higher end of the bat will do just fine.
Keep your front shoulder low, because that’s how your slap will be the most effective. Don’t lean backwards, as you will not be able to do it properly. That being said, you will need to create what’s called a hitter box with your arm that’s bent while you are holding your bat. That means that you don’t want to extend your elbow to the side or just relax it. It needs to be in a tight position, almost having contact with your chest. What’s also important is to keep your hands up all the time. When slap hitters cross their back foot over their right foot, they sometimes tend to lower their arms. The body sort of commands that move naturally, but it’s not a good move for slap hitters. Slap hitters are very important players in softball. They usually make certain mistakes, like making a move with their back foot towards the base while skipping the move towards the pitcher. That’s why it’s so important for them to constantly repeat even the moves they think they already know, and, of course, improving their skills while recognizing and removing the mistakes they make. Did you find this tutorial useful? If so, like and share!