How To Stay In Softball Shape After Your Season Ends
Once softball season ends, it is still important to stay in “softball” shape. That means keeping your skills sharp and your body in playing shape. Whether you lift weights, run or continue playing over the summer, you have to find what works best for you to keep your mind and body ready to play.
Softball America has some tips for how to stay in softball shape following the end of your season.
Allow yourself to take a break
The long softball season can be physically and mentally exhausting. Playing possibly 30+ games takes a toll on your body, no matter how physically strong you are. Giving yourself time after the conclusion of your season to relax and physically reset yourself can be one of the best things you can do for yourself. This is also important if you are going to continue playing in the summer, as you do not want to injure yourself by playing and training too much.
Find your preferred way of exercising
Staying in shape does not have to be boring or tedious. There are many different avenues you can explore when it comes to exercise. You can look at the traditional route of finding your perfect gym routine, or you can pick up other exercise-heavy activities. This can include hiking, biking, cycling, swimming, dance classes, CrossFit, Zumba or other activities as well. Taking part in one of those activities, or even in multiple, will give you variety and keep you from plateauing.
Stay involved in softball
Keeping yourself in shape and staying in softball shape are two different things, and both need to be taken care of in different ways. To stay in softball shape, you'll need to take some reps in the offseason. If you are a pitcher, throwing bullpens to a teammate is the best way to stay in softball shape. Taking infield and outfield reps, meeting with a hitting coach or just doing basic drills on your own are all ways to stay in softball shape during the offseason. Have a catch with someone once or twice a week to keep your arm mobile, and do what you can specifically for your position to stay on top of your defensive skills.
Find a 23U league to play in
Getting live reps in is just as important as doing simple drills. Many areas around the country feature 23U leagues that are available to play in and will allow you opportunities to see live, in-game action during the offseason. You can also try to find a league through your travel organization, and maybe even see if you can get some of your old teammates together to form a team. Regardless of how you find your way into one of these leagues, it is imperative to continue playing in game situations to keep your skills in check.
Have fun and enjoy your offseason
No matter what your offseason softball work looks like, you'll want to have fun while doing it. Do not let yourself get wrapped up in thinking you need to focus every second on staying in shape for softball. This is your time to take a break and control what your own personal work looks like. Find what works for you and stick with it.