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The 60 Yard Dash versus Stealing Second Base

When training baseball players for speed I often ask them if they understand how running a 60 yard dash is different from stealing second base.  I usually receive very intelligent answers.  They understand that the distance between the two types of runs is different (180 feet versus less than 90 feet) and they even point out that they cannot get picked off when running a 60 yard dash.  What boggles my mind, however, is that the player will then attempt to use the exact same baseball start when running in both scenarios.

While testing a 60 is not as standardized as assessing a 40 yard dash at the NFL Combine, there are a few rules that are usually consistent among most scouts and coaches.  First, the player is usually asked to start in a traditional baseball start in which they would be facing the (imaginary) pitcher, and second, it is usually assumed that the time begins when the runner makes their first move.

Because you can’t get picked-off at first base while running a 60 yard dash your mindset should only involve moving to your right (or forward).  While the coach or scout tells you that you have to start in a baseball stance, he almost definitely will leave the exact details of what that means up to you.  In other words, you are ok as long as you start sideways to where you will be running.

Therefore, your 60 yard dash start should be slightly different from you start used on the base paths (actually, I would change the baseball start as well, but that is a whole other topic).  More specifically, I recommend that the toes of your right foot should be behind the heel of your left.  This will allow the back foot to go directly towards the finish line.  Also, the right toes should be greatly turned out (about 60-90 degrees).  Many times, the first movement is spent opening this foot and wasting valuable time.  Finally, the arms should be switched in a manner that the left arm pulls and the right arm punches.  This is usually opposite from what is traditionally taught.

To learn more about improving your 60 yard dash and baseball speed check out 60 Yard Dash Secrets or sign-up for the free video tips below.

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