Softball (Incorporating T-Ball) 

Introduction

You must refer to the Requirements for All Sport and Physical Activity to understand your overall compliance responsibilities.

Where considered appropriate, for example inclusion in a school sport program, parents or caregivers must be informed of full details of the location, supervision to be provided and activities to be undertaken when seeking their written permission.

Teacher/Instructor Qualifications and Experience

The teacher/instructor must have appropriate expertise and/or training in the teaching/coaching of softball.

A teacher must be present who has recognised current training in emergency care.

Supervision

Where an adult other than a teacher is engaged to provide instruction, a teacher must be present to take overall responsibility.

It is recommended that qualified officials be used for inter-school competitions.

Equipment

All equipment must be inspected before play commences, and if defective must not be used. The bat grip must not have plastic or smooth tape on the grip.

Equipment must be suited to size, strength and ability of the students.

All fielders must wear a glove. As shin guards are recommended for close in-field players, an appropriate number must be available in the kit for use. Males in this position should wear a genital protector.

Students are to wear appropriate footwear such as softball cleats or wear sports shoes.

Softball cleats must be inspected prior to the commencement of each game to ensure that the cleats do not have sharp edges and conform to the rules of the game.

The designated catcher must wear a face mask, throat protector, chest plate, helmet, leg protectors and a genital protector (if applicable).

* As the game of T-ball requires the ball to be hit from a 'tee', a designated catcher is not required.

Batters and baserunners must wear two eared helmets. It is recommended that a chin strap be attached to the helmet. The batting Tee must:

  • Not have any sharp edges.
  • Be light enough to be moved quickly and easily.
  • Be adjustable to suit the batter.
  • Be placed with stem over the centre of the front edge of the home plate.
  • Be removed by the plate umpire whenever necessary after the batter hits a fair ball.

A well-equipped medical kit must be readily available.

Venues

The ground surface must be free of obstructions and loose objects. Hydrated lime must not be used in marking out the diamond. Where possible, back netting should be provided. Where more than one game is played at a venue, there must be sufficient space between the games to avoid overlapping of outfielders.

Safety

Teachers must insist on all safety equipment being used.

Any player catching to a pitcher (in practice as well as the game) must wear full catching attire which includes mask, helmet, throat protector, breastplate and leg protector and where appropriate, a genital protector.

Spectators must be at least ten (10) metres away from the first and third base lines. This will ensure that spectators are well clear of the dead ball lines. The area immediately behind home plate must not be used by spectators unless it is appropriately screened.

The batting team must be at least ten (10) metres away from base lines and well clear of the home plate area.

All players should be coached in the correct “sliding into base” technique which is the figure 4 or bent leg slide.

If bases are to be pegged, they must be of the type with strapping which is pegged from beneath the base. Pegs are not to be used through the top of the base.

A safety (or double) base is recommended for both softball and T-ball.

Players who coach in the first and third base coach boxes must wear a two eared helmet.

Ensure the umpire standing behind the catcher wears protective equipment as prescribed for the catcher. If not, the umpire must stand behind the pitcher. In T-ball, the umpire should stand directly opposite the batter.

Stretching, warm-up and cool-down are vital elements in preventing injury and should be included in any softball program.

Students are to be instructed to use adequate sun protection, e.g. an SPF50+, broad spectrum, water resistant sunscreen reapplied regularly and appropriate cap.

Where possible, ice should be available for the treatment of injuries.