How to stop my U12s using their bottom hand and hitting the ball up?

How to stop my U12s using their bottom hand and hitting the ball up?

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Cricket CoachCoach
Cricket CoachCoach

perhaps make sure they hold the bat with the bottom hand VERY LOOSELY and ensure head over ball "in figure 9" position

Cricket CoachCoach

use tennis ball in the bottom hand grip and try to play with it , i am sure u will get ur problum slove by using my way of ticnique.mostly area of cover and extra cover is chosen for play and target was that area to hit the ball if u do it again and again u will find ur bottom hand grip is soft and loss.For playing down u must tranfer ur wait on the front leg to play shorts, but remember don't use big stride, play the ball with close ur body and ur head is over the ball.

Cricket CoachCoach

Put a squash ball in the palm of the glove on the bottom hand. They won't be able to grip the bat apart from with their fingers. Throw down balls for about 10 minutes. Alternatively get them to do one hand batting drills and give them a target to push the ball towards.

Cricket CoachCoach

Actualley 12 years age boy using bottem hand may be cause of lake of stregnth in left hand and its very common. you can do,number one - shadow practice drive the ball left hand only number two- hit the stationery ball from left hand only. number three . one hand drive in knocking , number four - transfer your weight heal and toe. first heal and then toe number fifth your both hand v pointing towards splice of the bat.

Cricket CoachCoach

i think for a 12 year boy we dont need to use a squash ball on his palm. just use one hand batting drills

PV NagarajCoach, India

Hi, Naturally in this age it is quit offen play with bottom hand, because to hit the ball hard, batting T drills will help him, and also keep small(smaller than gulf ball) ball in side the botton glouse,and also transfer of body wt.on the bvall is most imp.

abdul Rahman ibrahimTeacher, Malaysia

I like what tanvir said, just use one hand that is upper hand to hit and keep let them practice using it everyday.

Coach, Australia

your hitting the ball to early

YDT Coach, England

Using too much bottom hand isnt always the problem. Its just as likely to be the lack of proper use of the front arm (getting the 9 position), having an incorrect grip or down to not moving properly onto the front foot - so in effect they are either hitting the ball out in front of themselves. I've tried using a squash ball with some of them - and it does work with a few without doubt. The best way I have found though is to put a low goal on the field- i.e. a couple of tallish cones with a stick on top between them forming a goal. They basically use this as a target - which can only be hit by pushing the ball along the ground. I've done this in combination with getting the grip right by getting them to only use the bottom hand first. Basically if they hold the bat only in the bottom hand and try to hit the ball along the floor towards a target (about 10 feet away) you will find they they grip the bat in a better way (rather than as an axe). You will also find that they have to step into the ball to push it as they generally wont have the strength to do it by just pushing it - so basically it gets their feet moving well and their hand in a good place. After a good few repetitions, get them to grip the bat to do it again - but then - without moving the bottom hand - add the top hand where it feels comfortable to them. In this way you tend to find that they grip the bat in the "9" way, and the hands start to work together in a straight line. As their feet are now moving as well you tend to find that they hit the ball a bit later with their hands and arms in the rigtht place - and it goes along the floor.

Cricket CoachCoach

The point come in my mind is that- 1-chalk the equipment that is bat, batting glove mainly & other gear. 2-bat should proper weight and length ,according to batsman eficiency & hight. 3-Right, selection of the ball. 4-make the grip of bottom hand much thicker(so that one can't grip the bat tightly) then the upper hand. 5- always give the caution to put their head just above the ball. 6- transfer the body weight. 7- don't use the power ,use the follow of the bat. 8-give some ex. for improving the fore arm str. 9-proved light weight bat. 10-again and again show the right technique through visual gadget

Cricket CoachCoach

I would say make sure that the front foot is fully extended and then the bat wont be able to cross the front leg. If they are right handers they will then hit their left knee.

Cricket CoachCoach

I think One hand driving drill will be the best for him.Make sure that at the time of driving body should be leaned forward perfectly,head should be down and at time of hitting use top hand rather than bottom hand and remember that face of the bat should be downwards. Statinary drill will be helpful.

Cricket CoachCoach

One of the key things is to set up a batting tee with a ball on top. The usual cause of the lofted drive is playing the shot too early so with a batting tee in position under the eyeline and a one-handed batting position, the batter can understand where he is playing the ball.

Do not discourage the use of the bottom hand for power though. Remember that the dominant hand is the bottom hand, encourage power through the shot at follow through and not prior..

Nazim khanCoach, Pakistan

i totaly agreed wth Richard,s tips.its the best way.

Bruce WaldronCoach, Australia

to develop the use of his top hand try a basic drill like this. hold thebat onluy with his top hand. His bottom hand is behind his back. Roll the ball to him. It will teach him ver quickly how to hit shots with his top hand . When has mastered this he then go back to both hands gripping the bat he should now have understodd the top hand does the work and the bottom hand will supporty what the top hand is driving only.

Cricket CoachCoach

None of the above posts have addressed one of the key faults - Weight Distribution
A few have mentioned correct head position so lets focus on that in more depth

If you were to look at the Batsmen from side on when playing the front foot drive, it is likley his head will be in the centre or slightly over his front thigh - when it should be over his front knee

The reason for this is so that the weight distributuion is going forward towards the ball

When in the correct position most of the weight should be on his front foot.
If you try to push/ rock the batsmen, it should be very difficult due to this

Now rather than just telling the batsmen lets get them to figure it out for themselves

1- Get the batsmen in his stance (Without the bat)- put a object (ball, keys, cone) down in front of him where he can reach it on a half volley length

2- Ask him to pick it up- and watch which part of his moves first - It will be his front leg

3- Repeat the drill but before he moves - ask him what he is moving first

The point of this exercise is the highlight that bastmen is moving his front foot first rather than his head towards the ball. (there is only a fraction of a second difference between the head moving first, and then the rest of the body, but it is crucial)

This means that as his hands come through the shot, his centre of gravity will be in the centre of his body, with his legs spilt into the front foot drive

What we are aiming for is the centre of gravity to be towards/over the front knee means that when the ball is hit the bat will be in a vertical position rather a slightly angled one with the bottom of the bat at the 7 O'clock position

If you combine this with the above coaching points from the other coaches, you will see an improvement

Andrew StrunkCoach, Australia

I agree the top handed (one hand) batting drills are the best. I use a drill with the boys I coach to hit a ball that is placed onto of a plastic cone (like a golf tee). They play the shot with just their top hand on the bat and play a shot stepping into the ball. It is great for teaching the boys to hit straight, drive along the ground, stepping into the shot and playing a front foot drive and not to forget playing straight through the line of the ball and not accross the line. One other very important aspect of this drill is have the boys or girls repeat this 20 times every training session and you will hear the kids say "my arm is getting tired". Little do they know each time they are doing this drill they are strenghtening their what is usually their weaker arm ! I have had a huge amount of success with this drill.

Cricket CoachCoach

you can use this technique

grip the bat with 1 hand top hand then drive th ball one hand by this when they play they won't use their bottom hand so muvh

Cricket CoachCoach

well i will make it also very simple ,you can use also a short handle bat for 12 years old as well the weight

of the bat should be also consider for youngster. why will we use a short handle bat so the answer is simple


the long or standard handle bat also tend to make battters use bottom as there is gap between the grips thus putting etxra pressure on there bottom hand.

Nazim khanCoach, Pakistan

its a very simple 1, just inserted the squash ball in the glove of bottom hand while practicing.......2...Handle up to bottom hand make thicker with half 2 or 3 grips......3....while net practicing at impact time he must used top hand.4...Ensure top hand is tighter than bottom hand.......good luck

Cricket CoachCoach

I will first focus on the bat weight (compare it with a batsmen body structure). The batsmen should be comfortable with the weight. its very important. Next is you need it more in the mind first then on the hand. In any batting scenario, you are not going to play with one hand, so why practice with one hand. Improve the strengths of the forearm so that it takes more weight than the bottom hand. Then have targets defined. Normally we dont want to play through the air shots inside the circle. So we have to simulate the same thing. Just keep reminding the batsmen to use the top hand more.You cannot eliminate the bottom hand as it a supplement for power ,support, need to give the batsmen some time to adjust.

Dont try with solutions like removing the bottom hand or inserting a squash ball...thats not cricket. And what are you teaching a tender age kid, to use workarounds instead of challenging oneself and getting over the mental barrier.Think!

Just incase you have decided to teach someone who is not understanding at all, I would suggest you tie a resistance band to the bottom hand elbow or bicep area and hook it up to some support behind the batsmen.Ensure the support is strong enough. Whenever the batsmen will use the bottom hand more ,he will be resisted automatically and will adjust accordingly.

Everything is limited with the ability the individual dont try too much of experimenting.Stick to the basics.



YDT Coach, England

One other option to look at on top of my original post is the position of the back leg. This tends to be better players who have this fault and is part of more advanced fault finding but the issue is that they bend the back knee too much when trying to hit the ball. This means that the head and weight sits back more towards the back leg rather than over the front foot - so they are leaning back slightly as they hit the ball - thus they hit the ball in the air more. They often self correct this once they've seen it on video but in general you need them to stand taller throughout the shot by drilling it with bobble feeds etc. You will also find that they will start to hit the ball a little bit later when they get this right - which is ideal

Cricket CoachCoach

Ive found for some of my juniors i get them to concentrate on there front elbow to point forward and be up so there bat is up in waiting for the delivery, with them concentrating on the elbow it takes there eagerness to follow through trying to hit it real hard away. this also helps them straighten could also be there playing the ball early. front foot going forward is also important and at under 12s i try to keep it simple we play straight ( HITTING IN THE V ) elbow up and we get our front foot going forward. hope this helps good luck 

Paul SmithAdministrator, Australia

Get a golf Impact Bag full of towels.  Put it 4 or 5m away on the ground from a lad in his normal stance.  Then tell him go bash the bag.    As its low to the ground 90% of the time the player will hit it with a straight bat ala a straight or cover drive action.    Kids love doing the drill as the bag makes such a big BANG.   The shot needs very little instruction other than go smash the bag.    They learn to play straight with power and the correct top hand bottom hand actions, and arm/bat alignments come natural to most doing this.

If the right wrist flattens during the downswing the batface goes up early .  It loses all the major power gained too.     The lever is shortened and basic physics tells us a long lever will move the world.   A short one will not.    One you learn to hit the ball with a Flat Left Wrist and a Bent Right Wrist you keep all the lag you have generated as well as controlling the face.   Techinical yes but its not in any coaching manual out there in this sport.

Neville YoungCoach, Australia

Using a squash ball might be OK for an adult but is much too big for most 12 year olds. Here is the method I learnt and now use with the juniors I coach that have this problem.

Fold you middle , ring and small fingers into a fist. You should now have your pointy finger and thumb free. Grip the bat handle with the pointy finger and thumb only. Now you cannot grip the bat handle too hard. Use this grip in practice to get used to how play shots without too much bottom hand. The bat is simply a lever. The top hand acts as the fulcrum point and the bottom hand is used to provide the effort to push the bat through into the ball (the load). The pushing force from the bottom hand is focused in the junction between the thumb and pointy finger and you can feel it there when you hit the ball.

This method works equally well for adults who use too much bottom hand and can be employed whenever you start to fall back into that habit again to remind you of how the the correct technique works.

Neville YoungCoach, Australia

I am assuming that this question relates to shots on the front foot. Most players hit the ball in the air because of poor positioning of the feet when driving. They tend to step too far forward and straighten their front leg. This leaves little margin for error and only a small window in the bat's arc where the ball will go along the ground. To ensure that the front foot goes to the correct position both for length and width, use the front shoulder to point at the ball as it comes to you. Imagine that there is a elastic band connecting your front shoulder and the ball. Track the ball with your front shoulder as though the elastic is trying to pull your front shoulder towards the ball. Your foot will go automatically towards the ball. It will land the appropriate distance down the pitch and across the pitch to the line of the ball. You will end up properly balanced with your head over the line of the ball and you will strike the ball just behind your front leg, ensuring that the ball goes along the ground. The window for hitting the ball along the ground will now be much longer, allowing for a greater margin of error. It also closes the gap between the bat and your front leg.

Place a ball on a good length on the pitch. Point your front shoulder at the ball and step forward to maintain balance. You will automatically place your front foot next to the ball. With you as the coach grab the batsman's front shoulder and pull it towards the ball on the pitch. They can't help but put their front foot into the correct position. Try it for yourself.

 This is the best information I ever received from one of my old coaches, George Tribe about batting and really improved my game.

HarvCoach, England

some useful stuff here, but can i suggest that most of this is for adults or not cricket specific, a squash ball or any other ball placed in the bottom hand glove is a crutch not a solution to a 12 YEAR OLDS problem, that trick is ok if your 40 and perhaps can't change because you've played this way all your life. One handed practise isn't my choice because this is not how the game is played, we use two hands. practising using an O grip with the top hand and a V with the bottom hand may help as the fingers and thumb  of the bottom hand won't wrap around the bat so tightly. Playing could be a number of isues such as playing to early ( play under the eyes is a solution) a low back lift means the bat will travel low to high so will always cause the bat to strike on the upward swing, a higher back lift may work or just higher hands. These issues are common at this age and sometimes it's just a matter of growing and getting stronger before things get better. Hope this helps

Cricket CoachCoach

As quite a few people have posted using a squash ball in the palm of the bottom hand glove is a effective and common techniques, in fact Adam Gilchrist used during the world cup. I would recommend doing that.

md mahmudul hoqueCoach, Ireland

I agree with tanvir and richard.we can use this two thing to improve.

Cricket CoachCoach

For u 12 boy correct his grip first

Rashed IqbalCoach, Bangladesh

I m agree with Richard Method.

Block Drill

Rendom Drill

Use SPIR & GAME Method.

Mahesh Prasad RijalCoach, Nepal

Kids genarally enjoy using bottom hand, It is hard to make them understand the difference between supportive bottom hand and dominant bottom hand untill and unless they desire.. Use of video clips or demonstration doing it in correct way can be useful. plenty of encouragement to play with supportive bottom hand,  giving particular zones to specific balls(feeding the balls), positive and constructive feedback in between. Sufficient practice is needed in positive environment.

Neville YoungCoach, Australia

I came across this video from AB De Villiers on the grip. It confirms my advice from 5 years ago. The grip for the bottom hand is demonstrated at about 1:40 in the video.

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