When it’s about baseball, a player has to be active and of course quick on the field in order to ensure outstanding performance. I’ve noticed that many coaches and players are quite indifferent about the speed of running but, this is of enormous importance. Running has an important role to play for any sport and primly for baseball since, faster running will help to convert the singles into doubles and the doubles into triples. Moreover, this will increase the chances of home runs too. Consider the fact from a team’s perspective – faster players are asset to the baseball teams simply because they can be used as pinch runners. Realizing this very truth, many are keen to have effective tips to run faster and that’s what I’m trying to provide here under.
If you are closely attached to the sport, you probably have heard that – “if you are just an average baseball player, having good speed can be your saving grace. If you are good hitter, not having enough speed can ruin your game.”
Before we delve into some of the core practices that help improving the running, I just want to make one thing very clear that “faster” and “quicker” are two different aspects of running. While the former one talks about the speed, the later one emphasizes more on the flexibility. However, we are going to enlighten some important practices of faster running in baseball.
Practice makes things perfect
Yes, although we have heard this for thousands of times, the truth never really changes. The very first step to faster running is to practice running faster with the goal in mind. Before starting the practice, you need to be aware of a few things like – presently how faster you run, how faster you want to run and how faster you can run. You need to keep an object in mind and that may be steal a base, break open a punt return or even finish the last leg. Moreover, the thing that you need to keep in mind is to push yourself from hard to harder. This may sound pretty simple but keeping up the consistency is the most difficult part.
Increase step length
This is a very common perception amongst most of the baseball players to increase the stride length. No doubt that it helps covering maximum distance at a stretch but covering the distance is not always about increasing the speed. You can perform a simple exercise that will help take a long stretch while running but the rhythm is more important. Take your knees as close as possible to the chest one by one. You can make it little bit harder by taking a pause when one knee is at your chest height by embracing that with two hands. Initially, you can start it slowly and then faster. This will improve the stride length.
This is always a very effective exercise to improve the stride length. This has no direct relevance with improving the speed of running but it certainly improves the reflex and hamstring muscles. You need to seat on the ground with your legs wide apart horizontally. Push yourself harder to stretch as much as possible. While running, muscle stiffness is very common, stretching helps avoiding situations up to a great extent.
Running up heel
When you are concerned about some effective tips to run faster and are ready to take up some exercises, running uphill should be a great call for you. It’s simple and it’s helpful. When you are not at the gym, you can do this outside. Aside from running and climbing any height you can do an alternative exercise too. Stand at a height with half of your feet without any support. Now move the two heels up and down. When it comes to running, you should first try to move up and down the heel and this will add resistance. The trick is to cover more distances within less time. Try to cover more distances at a stretch. You have to do this by maintaining proper running form. And you must keep a track of how much time you are taking to cover how much distance.
Opposite to the above discussed position, running downhill is also equally important in order to improve the running for baseball. What i feel important about this style is that the player will feel the gravitational force and he/she has to try run faster and not to fall on the ground. When you are able to carry the body weight while running, you will certainly make it faster on the baseball ground too. It’s better to practice on slope since that will pull your body to downwards. And to prevent falling down your body will propel to run faster. This also helps balancing the body weight at the time of running and doing this is easy for short running. Keep a track of how much time you are taking to cross certain distances.
While talking about the tips to run faster, along with the the aforementioned exercises, I strongly feel that certain weight training are really helpful. It’s now time to hit the gym for some weight training. Since running is mostly associated with the lower parts of the body, some lower body weight training can be fruitful. Running with some added weight on both the legs will make you run faster while there is no weight (on the field). You can go for some exercises like – lunges, squats, sit ups and etc. And you need to do this with low weight and high intensity. I would suggest not to go overboard with the weight because this will not be of much help.
All the mentioned exercises are necessary to be followed on a regular basis. And the most important thing is to perform these exercises under the supervision of an expert. While doping them everyone needs to keep patience. Improving running is not a game of a day or two. You need to practice harder to achieve explosive movement and speed and this is the best tip to improve your running. Now, I wish you will definitely be an important player in your baseball team with improved running abilities.