Batting practice cages are one of the most useful pieces of equipment for serious baseball players. Installing a cage to help with your batting practice routine can take your training to the next level. In this article, we discuss some of our favorite things about batting cage practice sessions and the biggest benefits of using a batting practice cage.
What Is a Batting Cage?
There are several different kinds of baseball facilities and equipment that are considered batting practice cages. The most common ones are outdoor structures that are arranged in a semi-circle that partially encloses the batter. You can see this kind of configuration commonly used during pregame batting practice at professional baseball games. A second kind of batting practice cage completely encloses the hitter in either a semi-round shape or in a long, rectangular installation also referred to as a batting tunnel. At its most basic, a batting practice cage is simply a designated space for hitters to go through their batting practice routine and work on different skills.
The Benefits of Using a Batting Practice Cage
For players looking to maximize their training and get the most out of their batting practice routines, we highly recommend getting your own batting cage for its versatility and how much it can improve your workouts. Here's our list of some of our favorite benefits from using our own batting cages.
1. Indoor Use
The portability of some batting practice cage models such as the ProCage™Professional Portable Batting Cage gives you the option of working indoors depending on the season so you'll always have the opportunity to work on your timing. The all-weather setup will keep you swinging even when the snow falls in the winter. Remove weather barriers like rain or high winds from your batting practice routine with an indoor batting practice cage. Stay inside during the summer so you can focus on your timing without worrying about the heat. Better still, set up your batting practice at home to eliminate the need to travel to a facility.
2. Eliminate Ball Shagging
With your own batting practice cage, you can spend more time working on swing mechanics instead of chasing batted balls all over the yard. Spraying baseballs to all fields is a good skill to work on until you have to track down all of the baseballs you've hit across the infield, outfield and over the wall. Eliminate all that hassle with your own batting practice cage.
3. Build Core Strength
All of those batting cage practice reps will not only help improve your swing but will work your muscle group to maximize swing potential. Swinging a baseball bat relies on hip rotation, lateral abdominal muscle control, quick-twitch muscle fibers and utilizing your lower half to generate speed along the swing plane. There are not many workouts that you can work into your batting practice routine that work the full range of muscles required to swing with speed and power more than simply going through the motions of swinging a bat. Being able to repeat those motions with frequency and utilizing swing aids like doughnuts or weights will increase your strength and bat speed.
4. Work On Technique
When combined with other baseball equipment, setting up batting practice at home to work on technique becomes easy. Practice your hand position during your stance and what feels natural to you without slowing down your load. You can work on your stride to make sure that you are setting yourself up for proper hip rotation and to maximize your power without falling away from the plate or closing yourself off. Practicing the simplest things with your own batting practice cage can make a huge difference for muscle memory and learning what is best for you.
5. Improve Hand-Eye Coordination
The most underrated skill for a baseball player is hand-eye coordination. There's an old baseball adage: See ball, hit ball. While that is oversimplified, the truth is that improving your hand-eye coordination is the first step toward making consistent contact at the advanced levels. We have seen it in the major leagues for years — the most physically gifted athlete in baseball is not necessarily the best hitter. The player who can read pitches, predict ball movement and then start his kinetic chain to make a round bat hit a round ball accurately and with power is the fundamental building block of becoming a great hitter. Many drills and training tools can help you work on hand-eye coordination with your batting practice cage.
6. Practice By Yourself
Unlike typical batting practice cages at training facilities, you can go at your own pace on your own time. You can also get a lot of reps in without assistance from others by using your batting cage practice to work on things that you can do by yourself. Teams, organizations and youth academies provide access to batting tunnels that let players work on hitting with a pitch machine or even allow coaches to throw BP sessions to their team. With a batting practice cage for your home, you can work on similar drills and eliminate the need for coaches or team members.