Softball Fly Ball Fielding Analysis

Basic Softball Game Evaluation Sheet

In order to be able to fully help your softball players to be good fly ball fielders, it is beneficial to have a thorough understanding of the skill from as many angles as possible. Following is what can referred to as a referent model or softball fly ball fielding analysis for softball throwing that will give you some ideas on how to improve small specific pieces of the skill that need to be refined.

Softball Fly Ball Fielding Analysis Considerations

The best way to analyze softball skills is with video analysis.  The ability to slow the motion down and see specific movements by the player will allow you to not only take not of the refinements but also allows the player to see it as well.  This will be useful in the development of kinesthetic awareness.

Technical / Tactical Skill Factors

We don’t always consider it but fielding fly balls is a technical and tactical skill.  How and when the player fields the ball will determine the ultimate success.

Some Technical Errors for Fly Ball Fielding

Technical Errors

Improvement Strategies

poor timing

take many types of fly balls

slow to the ball

agility / speed drills

not reading the ball off the bat

take many types of fly balls

glove in front of the eyes

ensure it is at throwing shoulder

incorrect first step

practice with balls right at you

incorrect first step

practice with balls right at you



Some Tactical Errors for Fielding Fly Balls

Tactical Factors

Improvement Strategies

poor positioning

position game and practice

inability to read the batter

get specific experience

lack of experience

watch and play games

did not survey the field

add it to pre-game checklist



Psychological Requirements

Softball is a game that has a lot of psychological barriers for athletes during competition.  The psychology of fielding fly balls requires skills that are going to have a

  • Narrow Focus – watching the ball off the bat to the glove
  • Broad Focus – awareness of surroundings
  • Confidence – willingness to take risks in getting the ball
  • Concentration – not distracted by surroundings

Some Psychological Challenges for Fielding Fly Balls

Psychological Factors

Improvement Strategies

afraid to miss the ball

positive self-talk

scared of getting hurt

be prepared – check field

throwing to the wrong base

cue words



Physical Requirements

Softball is a power sport that requires the following biomotor skills:

  • Coordination – catching then transition to throwing
  • Balance – catching the ball while moving
  • Speed – getting to the ball successfully
  • Agility – quick feet in the transition
  • Flexibility – using the full range of motion to attain success

Some Physical Challenges for Fielding Fly Balls

Physical Factors

Improvement Strategies


quick coordination drills


wind sprints / weight training



Performance Outcome Factors

Every softball skill is executed with a desired outcome.  That outcome however can be broken down just as the skill itself is.  Here are some expected outcomes that you might have.

Expected Outcome

Mechanics / Biomechanics



Correct location


No effort required by receiver

Arm / wrist action

High velocity

Body rotation  / wrist snap

Quick transition

Follow through




As coaches, error detection and correction is what we do.  There is a time and a place however for that activity to occur.  During competition is generally not the time.  Following is a few recommended paths you can take to help your players improve their skills.



Break down the skill

During practice

Kinesthetic feedback

During practice

Skill instruction

During practice

Provide a mentor

During practice