The Treasure Map Challenge is a great way to introduce the baseball field, positions, and names to your players. Use the concept of a treasure map to peak the interest of your athletes and come up with a fun way to use the map. This can be run as a drill at practice and also given out as an assignment to take home and color.
EXECUTION – Place cones down at each position on the field. Place four cones in the outfield, if your league uses right-center and left-center positions. Then, pair up the athletes and give each pair a copy of the Treasure Map. Assign each pair of athletes a different position, and release them on your verbal to sprint to that spot on the field. Call them back to the dugout and repeat. Discuss how the team is supposed to take the field – with a sprint!
Get creative with how you use the map, even assigning it as a homework assignment to help learn the field. Color it, marking their favorite position (or the position their favorite MLB player plays).
- Sprint On and Off the Field – There is only one way for a baseball player to take the field – and that’s with a sprint.
- Assign Homework – Sending the map homes accomplishes two things: (1) It makes you look really good (“man, this coach has his stuff together.”). (2) It establishes early, that you expect your athletes to be fully engaged. This is fun, but this is homework! Try sending this assignment home BEFORE running at practice.
- Athlete Pairs – Placing athletes in pairs helps to avoid any fear of being wrong or not knowing where a position is.
- PAIR ATHLETES AND PROVIDE A MAP
- ASSIGN EACH PAIR A POSITION AND YELL GO!
- REPEAT 4-6 TIMES, ASSIST AS NECESSARY
- SPRINT ON-AND-OFF
- ASSIGN HOMEWORK
- PAIR UP ATHLETES
- Other12Treasure Maps