The Softball Skills Book by Kirk Walker

The Softball Skills Book by Kirk Walker
Kirk Walker has assembled over 175 drills organized into fourteen chapters covering training, fundamental skills, position-specific skills, and tactical drills. Each drill page states the drill’s purpose, how to organize and execute it, variations of the drill, and miscellaneous coaching points. Additionally, each chapter has an introduction that provides general guidance for the topic at hand. Though there is a lot of information presented, I feel that this book does not quite live up to its promise.

One problem may be that each chapter is written by a different D1 coach, and since each D1 program has its own philosophies and points of emphasis, there seems to be a lack of continuity from chapter to chapter. Given that Kirk Walker is the Head Coach at Oregon State University, his book may have been better served focusing on Oregon State’s drills, approach, values and beliefs.

Like most drill books, this one has a drill finder which tries to help the reader zero in on a drill of interest, but there is not enough granularity in the drill finder table to differentiate from one drill to the next. For example, Chapter 11, Pitching Drills, has 11 different drills yet all of them have the same exact characteristics in the drill finder matrix. As a result, the reader still has to read through each drill to determine which one best suits his/her needs. I would add an additional column in the drill finder that highlights a drill's main "Coaching Point" (as listed on each drill page).

There *are* drills that I've incorporated into my practices and there *is* plenty of good information here, but actually teasing it out and finding it can be a chore. I am glad I have this book, but it is not usually the first book to which I turn when I am stumped and need to find a solution to a practice or player problem.

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