Updated: Jan 30
The explosive speed training drill that works on your acceleration is called donkey kick sprints. If you want
to become a faster baseball player this video is for you. In order to make highlight reel plays when on defense and wreak havoc on the base paths when on offense, players need to be able to sprint explosively in any direction and accelerate to top speed as quickly as possible.
On defense, donkey kick sprints exaggerate the pro-hop or prep step ready position used by elite baseball infielders and tennis players so you can learn what it feels like to absorb force and then produce force explosively which will increase your defensive range and play making abilities. On offense donkey kick sprints exaggerate the balance, dynamic stability, reaction time, and first step quickness required to get on base, steal bases, and score more often.
Be sure to watch the video because I compete in a Donkey Kick challenge where if I fail Indiana Orv will whip objects out of my hands and off of my feet with his bullwhip.
To perform donkey kick sprints start by placing a cone down as a starting point and then place a second cone down 10, 20, or 30 yards away as the finish line. When you’re ready, step forwards with one foot, plant both hands firmly into the ground, and kick your feet up into the air like a donkey (three-quarters of the way into a hand stand). As soon as your feet return to the ground, you need to sprint in the direction you want to go.
There are 3 key teaching points and key execution points when performing donkey kick sprints:
1) As soon as your feet land, you need to shoot forwards like a torpedo to go from point A to point B as quickly as possible. Imagine being an airplane. An airplane must gain speed down the runway before it can take off. To be fast you want to produce force and cover ground in the direction you want to go, not up into the air.
2) Pump your arms as hard and as fast as you physically can. Your elbows, when you pump your arms, should go from your ear to elbowing somebody in the chin behind you. This arm motion creates symmetry, balance, and power when sprinting. Your legs can only go as fast as your arms pump through a full range of motion.
3) Practice sprinting in every direction because in baseball, or any sport, we cannot predict where the ball will be hit or what will happen on the next play so being able to react and explode in any direction is very important. That means practicing donkey kicks forwards, lateral to the right, lateral to the left, backwards with a drop step to the left, and backwards with a drop step to the right.