Regardless of what game you play, at some stage in your athletic career, you will run a Baseball Conditioning Program. Long distance, sprints, intervals, gassers, suicides – you name it, you may run it.
Today, coaches of several sports include the conditioning as mentioned earlier variants; but sadly, baseball coaches tend to stay with conventional long distance running. In my view, this is not a helpful form of conditioning for baseball players.
Baseball is a power game in which most activity on the field happens fast, with bursts of acceleration and top speed followed by long periods of rest. When considering conditioning for baseball, coaches must look to mimic the demands of the game. Incorporating long-distance running does not come close.
Baseball Conditioning Program
At a long distance run, an athlete exerts himself at medium intensity over an extended duration, thereby training his body to function at a slower pace. The human body is quite capable at adapting to the environment it’s placed in. The cliché train slow be slow, train fast be fast rings true here.
If you would like to be fast and explosive, your conditioning should involve rotational work, sled pushes, medicine ball circuits, and other power moves. Do not forget about rest intervals. In a game where you can achieve almost full recovery before making another pitch, take another swing, or progress to another base, you should be taking adequate rest between bouts of sprints or other conditioning sets.
Here is the best baseball conditioning program you can try. First, finish a strong dynamic warm-up, or perform these patterns at the end of a fantastic practice.
Sprints at Different Distances
Use the foul line as your starting point and set up cones at distances of 20, 40 and 60 yards. Complete sprints at these distances as follows:
- Two 20-yard sprints at 75% effort
- two 40-yard sprints at full effort
- two 60-yard sprints at full effort
- two 40-yard sprints at full effort
- two 20-yard sprints at full effort
Walk back to the starting line after finishing each sprint. The walk back is the rest and should provide you sufficient time to recuperate before the next sprint. When you come back to the line, begin your next sprint.
Baseball Conditioning Program – Build-up Sprints (or Flying Starts)
Start with the athlete in motion. In the example below, you can run a total of 60 yards, but just the next 30 yards at full rate. Set up cones at 30 and 60 yards. Perform a few light sprints first. When you do the Build-Up sprints, start your run at 50 to 75 percent effort. As you hit the halfway mark, increase your rate to 100 percent effort.
- Two 30-yard sprints at 50 percent effort
- Eight 60-yard Build-Up sprints: initial 30 yards at 75 percent effort, second 30 yards at 100 percent effort
Again, after each sprint, use your walk back into the starting line as your rest.
Baseball Conditioning Program – Base Running Drills
Discuss getting sport-specific. Baserunning drills permit you to work on your base running skills while also working on your conditioning.
- Start at home. Sprint through the First base. Walk to second base.
- Get your regular lead from second base and sprint home like attempting to score on a single. After reaching home, walk to first base.
- Get your regular lead from first base and sprint to third base. Walk to home.
- Beginning at home plate, sprint to second base as though you merely hit a double. Walk into third base.
- Again, take your regular lead from third base and sprint home as though you were hoping to score on a grounder into the infield. Walk to 1st base.
- Take your lead from 1st base and sprint around the bases to score at home.
Rest to complete recovery after one complete set of the above sequence. Perform one to three sets.
Baseball Conditioning Program – Shuttle Runs
Shuttle runs permit you to work on agility and change of course. Set up two cones anywhere from 10 to 20 yards apart. Start at the first cone and full sprint speed to the next one. Decelerate and change course, then sprint back to the beginning. Performing the total assigned space between the cones finishes one rep. Following is a fantastic series where the total distance may be similar from rep to rep, but the distance between the cones varies, allowing for more or less change of direction.
- Three x 30 meters – cones 10 yards apart
- Two x 60 yards – cones 15 yards apart
- Two x 60 yards – cones 20 yards apart
- Three x 60 yards – cones 10 yards apart
Rest a couple of minutes between sets.
Baseball Conditioning Program – Sled Pushes
The sled and its many variations are in character. Because of this, there’s far less wear and tear on the body, so little to no recovery time is necessary. This means that you could add volume to your workouts, may perform sled workouts more often, or can proceed in a higher intensity without paying the price of joint and muscle soreness, or harm.
This is especially beneficial for athletes as it enables them to train hard throughout their season, yet will not impede their recovery between competitions or games. The sled and its many variations mimic the lower body mechanics of running a great deal more than any other exercise. Unlike running, there’s less wear and tear on the body, and it’s significantly less technical.
Easy To Use
When it comes to proper form, while there are a few critical points that I will outline, later on, the sled is relatively straightforward to learn and isn’t as technical as several different exercises, such as running. Because of this, it’s acceptable for virtually all fitness levels and will help individuals quickly track their way to attaining their targets.
A sled is a superb tool for losing body fat, adding muscle and getting shredded. The many variations of this sled will kick your metabolism into overdrive and will turn your body into a fat burning machine. The sled is also ideal for muscle hypertrophy and can help you attain a lean and athletic look.
Improve Strength, Power, and Speed
You may develop your strength by incorporating as much weight as possible and pushing/pulling the sled.
You may develop your energy by adding approximately 70-85 percent of your maximum weight and moving the sled as explosively as possible. This will have a tremendous carryover effect on sports and moves where you’re needed to do volatile and dynamic movements like sprinting, jumping, bounding, planting, changing direction, etc.
Unlike most other pieces of gear, the sled is extremely specific to conducting and has an enormous carryover effect. Unlike running, you can’t cheat with your form. To get the sled to proceed, you will need to carry out the exercise with impeccable technique, yet it’s relatively straightforward to do.
Because of this, you will establish appropriate motor patterns and will strengthen the muscles which are crucial for running. The sled will improve your ability to accelerate in all directions, which will enhance your quickness and stride technique.
The Sled Will Get You In Good Condition
The sled permits you to increase your anaerobic conditioning by doing sprints which are brief and high in strength, which last between a few seconds to 2 minutes.
Together with the sled, you might also enhance your aerobic conditioning. You can attain this by performing reps which are longer, or by doing many shorter drives with very little rest between sets, or by using the sled along with other exercises as part of a conditioning circuit.
This sort of training is very intense, yet doesn’t thrash your joints and muscles how regular running does, especially running that is done on turf, a court or cement.
Sled pushes are fantastic for working on leg push. It is possible to load the sled with heavy weight and work on your leg power, or you can go lighter and operate on pure speed. In any event, you’re likely to be challenged. Based upon your current level of conditioning try for three to six sets of 30 yards per drive.
Baseball Conditioning Program – Sled Drag
The Sled Drag is a superb way to concentrate on your posterior chain and work your glutes, hamstrings, calves and also improve your posture.
To perform the Sled Drag, you may need straps (we used a Suspension Trainer) or a rope which you could hook into the sled and hold to drag the sled behind you. You can even use a harness, but then you do not get the advantage of having to hold and drag it.
As soon as you have the sled setup, maintain a handle in each hand with the sled behind you. Your arms should be straight down by your sides as you lean forward a little to put tension on the straps and sled. Keep your back flat and center engaged.
Walk or Run
Then start to walk, run or take large stomping steps ahead. What gait you use will be determined by what you need to escape the move and how much weight you’re using on the sled. If you intend to run, you might want to go lighter and operate on being volatile.
The Sled Drag is also an excellent leg workout for many people with back and knee pain, just be certain that you start lighter and maintain your core engaged.
Baseball Conditioning Program – Lateral Sled Drag
The Lateral Sled Drag is a superb way to work your body in the frontal plane of motion rather than just using the sled for sagittal plane motions. It’s a terrific movement to train lateral motion and even isolates each leg so that your side can not take over as much.
The Lateral Sled Drag helps you create great hip and glute strength in addition to adductors and abductors strength.
To perform the Lateral Sled Drag, attach a rope or handles.
Staying sideways to the sled, lean away, so there’s tension on the straps — next step the foot closest to the sled throughout your body before stepping back to the side with another foot to move laterally.
Don’t rotate open toward the sled. Stay sideways and measure your foot over and across to move laterally. Finish the drag one direction then go another way, stepping across with the other foot. Be sure that you push with that foot you’re stepping across.
Keep your heart tight and your torso up tall as you step laterally.
You may change your speed and stride length in addition to the weight you use on the sled to adjust the intensity and precisely the way your body is worked. Aim for three to six sets of 20 yards every direction.
Table Of Contents
- 1 Baseball Conditioning Program
- 2 Sprints at Different Distances
- 3 Baseball Conditioning Program – Build-up Sprints (or Flying Starts)
- 4 Baseball Conditioning Program – Base Running Drills
- 5 Baseball Conditioning Program – Shuttle Runs
- 6 Baseball Conditioning Program – Sled Pushes
- 7 Easy To Use
- 8 Improve Strength, Power, and Speed
- 9 The Sled Will Get You In Good Condition
- 10 Baseball Conditioning Program – Sled Drag
- 11 Walk or Run
- 12 Baseball Conditioning Program – Lateral Sled Drag