Discover the practice philosophies of an 8-time NCAA National Champion!
- Build a championship-caliber defense through drill progressions that increase the skill and confidence of your fielders
- Learn a fun, challenging, and competitive metabolic workout that includes mobility training as well as dynamic and static stretching
- Discover Arizona's daily batting practice and learn how they create a format for hitters to focus on different aspects of their swing to develop better bat control and timing
featuring Mike Candrea,
University of Arizona Head Coach;
8x NCAA Champions, winningest coach in NCAA Division I Softball history (1500+ wins);
4x National Coach of the Year; named the Pac-12 Coach of the Century;
Distinguished member of the National Fastpitch Coaches Hall of Fame (1996);
2x US Olympic Softball Coach (Gold in '04, Silver in '08)
with Stacy Iveson,
University of Arizona Assistant Coach/Pitching Coach;
former Head Coach at Pima Community College and Yavapai College, 4x NJCAA Championship Coach (two at each school); 2004 NJCAA Coach of the Year
and Caitlin Lowe,
University of Arizona Assistant Coach;
member of the 2008 US Olympic Team (Silver Medal); 4x All American at Arizona
Mike Candrea provides exclusive in-depth access to four days of practice with the University of Arizona softball team. Coach Candrea introduces you to the general practice structure he uses and the philosophies and techniques that he integrates into every workout. You will also see how the team focuses its strength and conditioning program toward building softball players who are more complete athletes.
This all access video shows you how to maximize game-like repetitions of all facets of the game in every practice drill. The coaches' open mics allow them to actively commentate on the drills, sprinkling in coaching tips along the way. You'll also get to hear them strategize through different situations.
Practice: Day 1
Individual infield and team defense play is the focus of the first practice, which gives players numerous reps and throws along with situational play. Each day, practice begins with an active warm-up that includes dynamic stretching and arm care to help maintain the health of the athletes. After throwing, the infielders pair up and work glove drills such as picks, short hops and backhands while the outfielders pair up and work on long toss and footwork drills that are outfield-specific.
After glove work, players work on a ground ball progression for both fielding and throwing. Candrea rolls the players a variety of ground balls to simulate different game situations, such as underhand flips, glove and backhand feeds. The progression moves to ground balls off the bat. Infielders man their positions to field and throw to different bases in a rapid succession, providing many reps in a small amount of time.
Coach Candrea adds a high-intensity drill to work on bunt and bunt defense. This prepares players both offensively and defensively for game situations. Set your players up to get more outs at second base on bunts to help eliminate big innings.
Practice ends with a live batting practice. Players are put into groups of five, with a runner at each base. The batters get three rounds of five pitches. Each round, batters work a different situation. The base runners work on base running leads on each pitch and hit. There's minimal standing around and players are learning or reinforcing what they know on every pitch.
Practice: Day 2
This practice focuses on infield positional play, pitchers' fielding practice, outfield play, and throwing to bases in various situational play. The practice builds on the individual work from day one and adds a more game-like progression.
Day two's practice begins in the weight room. Strength & Conditioning Coach Rob Harris, shows you a softball-specific workout used to develop strength and flexibility. He provides the benefits for each exercise and shows how to adapt each exercise to help with injured athletes.
Infield practice features footwork and glove work from rolled balls and ground balls off a fungo. A pitcher's fielding practice allows pitchers to be the fifth infielder without sacrificing their pitching mechanics. You'll see how Candrea teaches throwing from every position in the outfield to every plausible location on the infield, creating players who are com