Agility Ladder Exercises for Softball
The agility ladder is a great tool to build speed because there are endless variations of the workouts you can do. It will help you improve your coordination, speed, and agility. And best of all, it’s small enough that you can bring it along with you in your bat bag!
Below are a few great workouts that you can do to start improving your game today!
Below are easy workouts you can do by yourself, with a partner, or with your team. Start off with a quick jog to warm up your leg muscles, and then head over to your ladder. For every run, you will start in the first square of the ladder (unless noted otherwise):
- High knees, one foot in each square: Slowly go through each square, raising your knees high and practicing correct running form. Make sure you pump your arms! Remember, opposite arm with the opposite leg. Go through the ladder and back.
- One foot in each square: Run through the ladder with high knees, one foot in each square. Go through the ladder and back.
- Quick feet: Run through the ladder, stepping both feet in each square before moving onto the next. These should be quick steps. Go through the ladder and back.
- Hop through: Hop through every square with both feet together. Repeat on the way back.
- One-foot hops: Starting on your left foot, hop through the ladder with only your left foot. On the way back, use your right foot.
- Hopscotch: Starting with both feet outside of the ladder, jump both feet together into the first square. Then jump back out of the ladder. Then jump both feet back into the ladder, landing in the second square. The pattern should be “Out, in, out, in…” Go through the ladder and back.
- Cross-country skiing: Start with both feet on one side of the ladder, then keep your feet together and jump to the other side of the ladder. Your feet will never go inside the ladder. Go through the ladder and back.
- Side run: Start on the outside of the ladder and face the middle of the ladder so your right foot is your lead foot (closest to the end of the ladder). Staying on the balls of your feet, step your right foot into the first square, then follow with your left foot. Then step your right foot out, and follow with your left foot. Then step your right foot into the second square, and follow with your left foot. Repeat this progression through the ladder. On the way back, stay on the same side of the ladder so your left foot is the lead foot and go back down the ladder. The pattern will be “In, in, out, out… In, in, out, out.”
- Icky shuffle: Perhaps the hardest to learn, the icky shuffle is a rhythm-based run. When you do this, stay light on the balls of your feet. Start with both feet to the left of the ladder (outside of the ladder):
- Step your left foot inside the ladder’s first square. Follow with your right foot.
- Step your left foot outside of the ladder (now to the left of the ladder). Keep your right foot in.
- Step your right foot forward into the second square. Follow with your left foot (which will now come into the ladder).
- Step your right foot outside of the ladder (now to the right of the ladder). Keep your left foot in.
- Step your left foot forward into the next square. Follow with your right foot (which will now come back in the ladder).
- Step your left foot outside of the ladder. Keep your right foot in.
- Step your right foot forward into the next square. Follow with your left foot.
- Complete Steps 2-6 until you finish the length of the ladder. The pattern will be “In, in, out…in, in, out.” Doing one walk-though might help you get familiar with the footwork.
- Do the same thing coming back down the ladder.
Hot Tip: Try It Backwards!
If you are feeling like you are advancing through the icky shuffle, try it backwards. The steps don’t change; just make sure you don’t trip!
- Run through it: Sprint through the ladder, one foot in each square.
One of the first results you’ll see (besides a newfound love for this workout!) is quick feet. This will translate into having a faster reaction time on the bases and on the field. In no time, you can bring your game to the next level.