Bringing Up the Vibes: 23 Fun Softball Drills for 14U Players

Last updated on September 5, 2023

As are most games, softball is a game that requires a combination of physical and mental skills, and it’s important to keep your players engaged and focused during practice. These drills are designed to be both challenging and entertaining, so your players will stay motivated and eager to learn. Whether you’re working with pitchers, catchers, infielders, or outfielders, we’ve got drills that will help your players develop their skills and build their confidence on the field.

From bunting to backhand ground balls, with drills designed to isolate specific skills and help players improve their technique, there’s something for everyone. We also include team-building exercises that will help your players learn to work together and communicate effectively. Whether you’re a seasoned coach or just starting out, our fun softball drills are a great way to keep your 14U team engaged and motivated all season long.

Fun 14u Drills

1. Backhand Stop Drill

Players are strategically dispersed across the field, their eyes peeled for incoming balls hit to their backhand side. The objective here is multi-layered. First, they need to quickly adjust and approach the ball, ensuring they’re positioned correctly. Then comes the skill of efficiently stopping the ball, scooping it up, and transitioning to their stance to make an accurate throw. This drill is instrumental in cementing the foundation of a player’s defensive skills. By dedicating time to the Backhand Stop Drill, players arm themselves with the confidence and skillset to tackle high-pressure infield scenarios, effectively shutting down potential advances by opposing teams.

2. Wall Ball

The premise is simple yet incredibly effective. A sturdy wall, a ball, and a player ready to engage in a game of rebound. As the ball bounces unpredictably off the wall, players must quickly react, positioning themselves to field it cleanly. This drill sharpens reflexes, enhances hand-eye coordination, and cultivates a player’s ability to adapt to unexpected plays. The unpredictable nature of the rebounds serves as a perfect metaphor for the surprises a game can throw. By mastering the Wall Ball drill, players equip themselves to confidently tackle unexpected challenges on the field.

3. Star Throwing Drill

Starting in a star formation made up of five eager players. As the ball zips from one point to the next in a sequential manner, players are tasked with ensuring smooth catches and razor-sharp releases. This drill is a beautiful fusion of skill refinement and team dynamics. While the primary focus is on enhancing throwing accuracy and catch efficiency, an underlying benefit is the improved communication between players. Regular sessions of the Star Throwing Drill can seamlessly transform a group of individual players into a cohesive, communicative unit, ready to out-strategize any opponent on game day.

4. Bucket Game

Turn your regular practice field into a vibrant playground by scattering buckets at different lengths and angles. The mission for players is to throw balls into these receptacles, effectively gauging the strength and precision of each throw. Beyond the immediate thrill of landing a ball in a bucket, this drill serves as a masterclass in controlled strength. By modulating the power behind each throw, players can hone their on-field throws to be both powerful and accurate. Commitment to the Bucket Game ensures that every throw a player makes during a match is deliberate, calculated, and, more often than not, a game-changer.

5. Relay Race Base Running

Imagine the field buzzing with energy as players line up for a classic relay race. However, instead of merely racing, players integrate base running techniques into their sprints. As teammates cheer on, each participant focuses on speed, agility, and the critical slide to finish each lap. The Relay Race Base Running drill is more than just a race—it’s a test of endurance, agility, and technique. With every lap, players improve their stamina, making sure that even in the final innings, they’re just as energized as in the first.

6. Pop Fly Priorities

Skyward, balls soar high as players on the field must quickly determine who’s best positioned to make the catch. Communication is critical. Players call out, ensuring no collisions and a successful catch. Through the Pop Fly Priorities drill, players refine their outfield communication skills, learning to trust their teammates’ calls and judgments. Over time, this practice can be the difference between a dropped ball and a game-saving catch, proving that sometimes, effective communication is just as crucial as skill.

7. Bunting Bonanza

Players step up to bat, but instead of swinging for the fences, they’re mastering the subtle art of bunting. With each pitch, they practice positioning, angling, and touch, ensuring the ball delicately lands in those hard-to-reach zones on the field. Bunting Bonanza is not about power; it’s about strategy. By consistently practicing this technique, players become adept at using bunts in tight game situations, throwing off the opposing team’s defense and creating opportunities for their teammates on base.

8. Shortstop Shuffle

Here, agility meets accuracy. Positioned as shortstops, players receive a series of rapid, alternating grounders, driving them to shuffle quickly from side to side. After each catch, they make a sharp, accurate throw to first base. The Shortstop Shuffle drill is a masterclass in agility, reaction time, and precision. With every rep, players enhance their infield prowess, ensuring that when game time comes, they’re the wall that opposing batters just can’t breach.

9. Pitcher’s Target Practice

Envision a series of targets placed at varying distances and heights. Pitchers then practice hitting these targets with their throws, challenging their accuracy and control. Every successful hit isn’t just a point in the drill but a testament to a pitcher’s skill and consistency. The Pitcher’s Target Practice drill goes beyond just pitching—it’s about control, consistency, and adaptability. As players engage with this exercise, they evolve into versatile pitchers, ready to deliver that perfect pitch, regardless of the pressure or situation.

10. Base-to-Base Fielding

With players strategically positioned between bases, their attention razor-sharp, awaiting grounders and pop-ups thrown by a coach. As the ball is played, they quickly field it, ensuring a smooth transition and pinpoint throws to the designated base. The Base-to-Base Fielding drill accentuates the nuances of transitional play. By immersing themselves in this practice, players polish their fielding reflexes and throw accuracy. This repeated action is invaluable in making automatic the reactions needed during tight, game-deciding situations.

11. Softball Bowling

Set the scene with ten pins at a distance, transforming the field into a makeshift bowling lane. Players take their turn “bowling” with a softball, channeling their inner bowlers while laughing at the novelty. But make no mistake—Softball Bowling is more than just fun. It’s a crafty drill that enhances underhand throw control and teaches players to appreciate the game’s dynamics differently. Success here translates to better underhand plays in real game scenarios, making sure each throw is purposeful and accurate.

12. Quick Feet Ladder Drills

With an agility ladder laid flat on the ground. One by one, players navigate through its sections, adopting varying footwork patterns from one-footed hops to intricate lateral weaves. The Quick Feet Ladder Drills serve as an adrenaline-packed agility test. Every step taken, every pattern mastered, contributes to the player’s base running speed and fielding responsiveness. By dedicating time to these footwork drills, players ensure they’re always in the optimal position, ready to react at a moment’s notice during games.

13. Shadow Batting

With no ball in play, players step up to the plate, swinging their bats with intent focus on form, balance, and follow-through. Every swing, every twist of the hip, is a dance with an invisible partner. The Shadow Batting drill, seemingly solitary, is a profound exercise in refining one’s technique. Through repetition, players uncover the strengths and weaknesses of their batting form. With this self-awareness, they’re better equipped to adjust, adapt, and ultimately connect with the ball in those high-stakes game moments.

14. Slap Hitting Drill

The strategy, known as slap hitting, is particularly popular among left-handed hitters in softball. The Slap Hitting Drill focuses on the coordination of footwork and hitting, aiming to place the ball in strategic areas to challenge the defense. It’s not just about hitting; it’s about making a calculated move based on the defensive setup. Practicing this technique empowers players to exploit gaps in the defense, providing an offensive edge during tight games.

15. Defensive Decision Drill

Balls are hit to random positions on the field, and players must swiftly decide whether to play the ball, toss it to another base, or hold it. The Defensive Decision Drill sharpens a player’s in-game decision-making ability. By simulating these high-pressure situations, players train their minds to assess, decide, and act rapidly. Regular practice ensures that when the game’s pressure mounts, players remain calm, making optimal choices that benefit the team.

16. Around the World Fielding

A coach hits balls to each player in sequence, replicating various fielding scenarios. After fielding, players must throw to a specific base or back to the coach. The Around the World Fielding drill enhances players’ adaptability and versatility. The unpredictable nature of the hits means players never settle and are always prepared for any situation. Over time, this translates to a solid defense, ready to counter any offensive strategy an opponent might employ.

Iowa St. fielders

17. Double Play Dynamics

Set the scene with runners on first and second base. The ball is hit, and the infield works together to achieve the elusive double play. This drill focuses on speed, precision, and seamless teamwork. Double Play Dynamics not only improves players’ technical skills but also boosts their on-the-spot decision-making. With regular practice, the team becomes adept at turning game-changing double plays, often leaving the opposition stunned and defeated.

18. Pitching Pressure Situations

Instead of the usual relaxed practice pitch, they’re placed directly into this high-pressure simulation. The Pitching Pressure Situations drill is designed to mentally toughen pitchers, ensuring they remain unfazed by game pressures. By consistently facing and conquering these mock pressure scenarios, pitchers develop a mental fortitude that’s invaluable during real game moments. They learn to channel the pressure, using it as fuel to deliver their best pitches when it matters most.

19. Base Stealing Sprint

The Base Stealing Sprint drill hones in on a player’s ability to judge and time their runs, aiming to beat the ball to the next base. It’s not just about raw speed; it’s about the art of anticipation. With regular sessions, players develop a sixth sense about when to make that crucial break, turning potential outs into game-shifting stolen bases.

20. Over-the-Shoulder Catch Drill

Make an over-the-shoulder catch without losing stride. This drill is a testament to a player’s agility and focus. Through consistent practice of the Over-the-Shoulder Catch Drill, outfielders perfect the skill of tracking and catching deep balls, ensuring that no hit is too far out of reach.

21. Dive and Recover Drill

With players ready to make a full-length dive to stop a ball, and then quickly recover to make a throw. It’s not just about the dive, but also the speed and efficiency of getting back into play. The Dive and Recover drill teaches players the balance between aggression and control. Regular engagement with this exercise instills a fearless defensive attitude, ensuring players give their all to stop every ball, yet remain composed enough to complete the play.

22. Catcher’s Quick Throw

The catcher must swiftly retrieve a pitched ball and hurl it with pinpoint accuracy to second base. The Catcher’s Quick Throw drill emphasizes lightning-fast reflexes combined with precise throws. With consistent practice, catchers can dramatically cut down base stealers, adding a formidable challenge to the opposition’s offensive strategies.

23. Focused Batting Practice

Maybe today’s focus is on low and outside pitches, or perhaps it’s about hitting off-speed deliveries. The Focused Batting Practice drill ensures that players don’t just swing aimlessly, but purposefully. By segmenting their batting practice, players can address and conquer their weak points. Over time, this deliberate practice transforms batters into well-rounded threats, capable of handling any pitcher they face.

Motivating Players for Improvement

As a softball coach, you want your players to not only have fun but also to improve their skills. However, it can be challenging to motivate your players to put in the effort required to improve. Here are some tips to help you motivate your 14U softball players to work hard and improve their skills.

Set Achievable Goals

Setting achievable goals can help motivate your players to work hard and improve their skills. Encourage your players to set both short-term and long-term goals. Make sure the goals are achievable and realistic, so your players feel a sense of accomplishment when they achieve them.

Make Training Fun and Exciting

Training can be repetitive, and players may lose interest if they feel like they are doing the same thing over and over again. To keep your players motivated, make training fun and exciting. Incorporate games and challenges into your drills, and make sure your players are having fun while they are learning. You can also mix up your drills and change the focus of your training from time to time to keep things fresh.

Create a Positive Environment

Creating a positive environment is essential for motivating your players. Encourage your players to support each other and celebrate each other’s successes. Avoid putting too much pressure on your players, as this can lead to anxiety and stress. Instead, focus on creating a supportive and positive environment where your players feel comfortable taking risks and making mistakes.

Recognize and Reward Progress

Recognizing and rewarding progress can be an effective way to motivate your players. When your players make progress, acknowledge their hard work and celebrate their achievements. You can reward your players with small prizes or recognition at the end of practice or games. Recognizing progress can help your players feel like their hard work is paying off and motivate them to continue improving.

Sliding and jumping to catch the ball.

Creating a Competitive Environment

Softball is a team sport, and creating a competitive environment during practice can help players learn how to work together and develop their skills. Competition can also make practice more fun and engaging, keeping players motivated and energized.

One strategy for creating a competitive environment is to split the team into smaller groups and have them play against each other in drills and scrimmages. For example, you could divide the team into two groups and have them play a game of “hot box” or “pickle” to work on base running and fielding skills. You could also have them play a game of “knockout” to practice hitting and fielding.

Another essential part of creating a competitive environment is to keep track of each player’s progress and performance. You can use a scorecard or chart to keep track of each player’s hits, runs, and other statistics. This can help players see their progress and motivate them to work harder.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I make softball practice more enjoyable for 14U players?

One way to make softball practice more enjoyable for 14U players is to incorporate fun drills and games into the practice routine. For example, you can have a relay race where players have to run around the bases while carrying a ball between their knees, or you can set up a batting competition where players have to hit a target to score points. Another way to make practice more enjoyable is to give players the opportunity to lead drills or come up with their own games.

Can drills be modified for younger players or different skill levels?

Yes, drills can be modified to suit the needs of younger players or different skill levels. For example, if you have younger players on the team, you can modify drills to make them easier or more age-appropriate. Similarly, if you have more advanced players on the team, you can modify drills to make them more challenging. It’s important to make sure that all players are challenged but not overwhelmed, so they can continue to develop their skills and enjoy the game.

What are some popular softball tournaments or leagues for 14u players?

There are many popular softball tournaments and leagues for 14U players. Some of the most well-known tournaments include the USA Softball National Championships, the Triple Crown Sports World Series, and the Premier Girls Fastpitch National Championship. Additionally, many local and regional leagues offer opportunities for 14U players to compete against other teams and develop their skills. It’s important to do your research and find tournaments and leagues that are a good fit for your team’s skill level and goals.

Catcher trying to tag someone and protect the plate.


In conclusion, incorporating fun drills into your softball practice can help your 14U players improve their skills while keeping them engaged and motivated. Remember to choose drills that are appropriate for their skill level and focus on the fundamentals of the game.

Some of the drills that you can try include upper body isolation for hitting, fungo golf, hit and run, catching, and fielding. You can also mix things up by incorporating games like “Around the World” and “Hot Box” to keep things interesting.

It’s important to keep in mind that while drills are important, they should not be the only focus of your practice. Encourage your players to have fun and enjoy the game, and remember to take breaks and switch things up to keep their attention.

Leave a Comment