Sometimes the important skill in base running isn’t running. Sometimes it’s the slide that means you’re safe.
Improper sliding, however, can result in injury to the young ball player. It is very important to teach proper sliding fundamentals because serious knee, ankle or hand injury can occur.
The most popular slide, and probably the safest, is the bent leg or figure 4 slide.
Here are some tips for sliding:
The key element to the bent leg slide is that one leg is straight and extended to the bag and the other is tucked under the straight one. Your hands should be up and loosely clenched to avoid injury.
You will want to start your slide approximately 7-10 feet in front of the bag depending on your speed and height. It’s important to not slide too late because you may jam a leg or ankle or too early because you may not reach the bag.
Take off from either leg. You will initially land on the bent leg’s calf and thigh and your rear end.
Stay low to the ground and throw your head back slightly to avoid hitting your knees too hard on the ground.
As your front leg comes into contact with the bag with your heel up, both legs should give to cushion the slide.
Practice on wet grass or use a large piece of cardboard with no shoes first before practicing on the field.
or contact a Rawlings Gear Customer Care representative at (866) 678-GEAR(4327) for information on tools to conduct base running drills