Buying Guide: 10 Best Softball Bat for 12 Year Old

Any average 12-year-old softball player is likely to have one bat that she prefers over all the others, especially if she has some experience with the game. While that might not be entirely a bad thing, the problem usually comes in when her bat of preference is not one that can enhance her performance. And that is where your adult, objective judgment should come into play.

But with so many softball bat brands in the market today, even you can get a little confused as to which one is good for her. If you want to pick a bat that can unleash the full potential in your kid, niece, or young acquaintance, you need to consider factors like the size, material, barrel, and handle among many other things.

To make the whole process easy for you, we have prepared this buying guide for you.

Top 10 Best Softball Bats For 12 Year Old

* editor rating based on quality and value
MODELOUR RATING
Louisville Slugger FPQS152 2015 Quest (-12)
Louisville Slugger FPQS152 2015 Quest (-12)
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
Easton FP14S400 FS400-12 Fastpitch Softball Bat
Easton FP14S400 FS400-12 Fastpitch Softball Bat
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
Easton MAKO COMPOSITE Youth Baseball Bat
Easton MAKO COMPOSITE Youth Baseball Bat
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
Easton MAKO TORQ Youth Baseball Bat
Easton MAKO TORQ Youth Baseball Bat
4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)
Louisville Slugger Fastpitch X12
Louisville Slugger Fastpitch X12
4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)
Easton S50 Youth Baseball Bat
Easton S50 Youth Baseball Bat
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
Easton MAKO 11 Fastpitch Softball Bat
Easton MAKO 11 Fastpitch Softball Bat
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
DeMarini CF7 -10 Fastpitch Softball Bat
DeMarini CF7 -10 Fastpitch Softball Bat
5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Easton FP14S50 FS50-10 Youth Fastpitch Softball Bat
Easton FP14S50 FS50-10 Youth Fastpitch Softball Bat
4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)
Anderson Bat Company Women's Rocketech 2.0 Fast Pitch Softball Bat
Anderson Bat Company Women's Rocketech 2.0 Fast Pitch Softball Bat
4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)

Things to Consider When Buying a Softball Bat

Fastpitch vs. Slowpitch Bats

Is your kid a fast pitcher or a slow pitcher? The answer to that question will point you in the right direction in your bid to get the best softball bat for her. How so? Well, a fast pitcher should be in a position to hit the ball with accuracy and send it flying at very high speed. For any average 12-year-old fast-pitcher, a shorter and lighter bat will do that effectively because she can swing it with ease.

If she is a slow pitcher, a heavier and longer bat might be the better option because speed will not be so much of an issue. The long and heavy bat will generate more momentum and power than a short and light one. That said, you should also ensure that the bat is neither too long nor too heavy for her to swing as that will only make it harder for her to hit the ball.

So what is the correct bat length and weight that you should settle for? That will be covered in the next two sections. However, the point to take home is that if your kid is a fast pitcher you should choose the exact recommended length and weight. But if she is a slow pitcher, it is okay to add a few inches to the length and a few ounces to the weight, more so if she is bigger than an average kid in her age.

The Appropriate Bat Length

There are various ways of determining the most suitable bat length for your youngster but the most efficient methods usually take her height and weight into consideration. The rule of thumb is that you should measure your kid’s height and weight and then use the following chart to determine the best bat length for her:

Not a fan of reading charts? Here is a clear guide:

1) Use her age: at 12 years, your kid should be able to swing a 29 to 32-inch bat without any problem. But mind her weight and height as well because they will help you determine the exact length.

2) Use her weight: if your child weighs less than 70 pounds choose a bat that is no more than 30 inches in length. If she weighs over 70 pounds, then considers going for a 31 or 32-inch long bat.

3) Her height: if the child is less than 50 inches tall, choose a bat that is at most 30 inches long. If she is over 50 inches tall, then you can go for the 31 or 32-inch long bats.

The Best Bat Weight

Length is not the only important thing to put in mind when choosing a softball bat, you also need to choose the most appropriate bat weight.

If you give your child a bat that is too heavy, she will find it hard to swing it, and that will make her underperform. At the same time, if it is too light, she won’t be able to generate the required momentum and force to send the ball farther away. Therefore, the key is for you to get the precise bat weight that will enhance her performance.

While it is recommended that 12-year-olds should have light bats, it is okay to give a fairly heavy one to your child if she is stronger than average kid or if she has more skills and experience in the game. This chart should help you choose a bat with the most appropriate weight.

Alongside length, bat weight is used to determine the bat’s drop. Drop refers to the difference between the length of the bat (in inches) and its weight (in ounces) and is a measure of how fast the ball comes off the bat. The best drop weight is anything from -8 to -12.

The Barrel

The standard barrel size of youth bats ranges from 2.5 to 2.75 inches. It is totally okay to choose a bat within that range. However, note that a bat with a smaller barrel will weigh less than one with a bigger barrel. That means if you are aiming for a heavy bat then choose one that has a big barrel.

The Bat’s Material

A softball bat can either be wooden or metallic. Unless she is playing in a professional league that demands wooden bats, always settle for the metallic ones. Aluminum (and its alloys) or graphite are the best options because they are durable and light enough for your child to swing.

Consider the Handle

If your child has a small hand, you might want to settle on a bat with a small handle that will match the hand. On the other hand, if her hand is big then a bigger handle will serve her better. Generally speaking, a bat with a small handle makes it easier to rotate the wrist compared to one with a big handle. The bat will be even better if its handle is gripped.

Conclusion

As you might have noticed, there is more to choosing a bat than just physical preference. If you are buying one for a 12-year-old child, make sure it is of the right length and weight.

We have provided charts that you can use to determine those two features. At the same time, it will be prudent of you to choose an aluminum bat with the recommended barrel of 2.5 to 2.75 inches. If your young champ is going to play in a particular league, be sure to read all the regulations regarding bats before you make your final choice. The last thing you want is to choose a bat that she can’t use in the competition.

Buying Guide: Best Softball Bats for My 10 Year Old

Every young athlete wants to get ahead. Fastpitch softball is no different. The best way to get ahead is by finding the best fastpitch softball bat for 10-year-old girls.

The market is so competitive, knowing which bats carry which advantages can be a daunting task. However, this buying guide will ease the burden of choice and give advice on how to determine which fastpitch bat is right for your kids.

Key Buying Advice

There are four main things to consider when shopping for a fastpitch bat: The length or weight ratio (known as the “drop”), the material, the handle, and the price.

The Drop

As I said before, the drop is the difference between the length of a bat (in inches) and the weight (in ounces). Typically, a 10-year-old would use a bat that’s between 28 and 30 inches long which means the weight would be between 16 and 20 ounces.

Lightweight bats are popular because they allow hitters to swing extra fast. Heavier bats are harder to swing quickly, but they do provide more momentum because of the amount of weight in the barrel.

In most cases, the preferred drop is going to be as large as possible with some companies offering drops as large as -13.

The Material

Simply calling fastpitch bats “aluminum bats” doesn’t apply the way that it used to – bats are still made of metal, but they’re not all made of the same types. High-end bats are now made of composite material to allow for a longer lasting sweet spot than those made of aluminum.

The composite materials don’t just make the bat last longer; they reduce sting, and they increase the bounce effect when a player hits the ball. The bounce is similar to a slight trampoline effect.

Many of these high-quality bats are also made of multiple pieces of metal. The barrel is separate from the handle which increases the flex in the bat. In short, a ball goes farther when the bat flexes more.

The Handle

Handles are one of the main parts of the bat that limit the sting a batter feels in their hands. Different quality bats offer different sting-resistance. Some offer leather grips, some offer sting-reduction knobs at the end of the bat, and the bats that are made of multiple pieces of metal allow the sting to dissipate.

Additionally, a hitter needs their hands to be comfortable. Certain grip patterns may be uncomfortable for certain people.

The Cost

Like most products, there is a huge range in cost of fastpitch softball bats. These products range from about $50 to as high as $400 or more, so your budget will help determine which bat to go with.

While cost is not the only factor, it is certainly worth considering. Simply put, less expensive bats are made from the less expensive material. On the other hand, with 10-year-olds, you might prefer to buy a less expensive bat because the kids will grow and need a new one in the next couple of years.

Top Pick

The DeMarini Vendetta

DeMarini Female 2015 Vendetta Fastpitch Bat

Our Rating: 5 stars

DeMarini has become one of the leaders in baseball bat production over the past decade, particularly in fastpitch. The 2015 version of the Vendetta is the top-rated fastpitch bat on Amazon and DeMarini has unveiled an updated version for spring of 2017.

About the bat:

  • Drop of 12 – either 29/17 or 30/18 for 10-year-olds
  • Certified by each of the major fastpitch associations in the United States
  • Vibration-eliminating handle
  • Composite metal barrel provides more responsive hitting area

People who own the Vendetta rave about the consistent pop in the bat and swear by the results. Almost every review mentions how great the pop is off of this bat. It simply lets your player hit the ball harder.

The Louisville Slugger LXT Hyper

Louisville Slugger LXT Hyper 17 (-10) Fast Pitch Softball Bat

Our Rating: 4.9 stars

Louisville Slugger is synonymous with making bats. They’ve been one of the most trusted names in sports for more than half a century. With fastpitch, their best high-end bat is the LXT.

About the bat:

  • Customizable drop – anything from -8 to -11
  • Flexible barrel allows for maximum bounce off of the bat
  • Complies with all rules and regulations – 2 ¼ inch barrel and 7/8 inch diameter handle
  • Sting-reducing technology in both the handle and the barrel
  • Performance Plus composite metal offers longer bat life

The high price tag is mostly justified as it’s made from the top of the line materials. The results speak for themselves as user reviews are almost uniformly great.

Best Budget Bat: Rawlings Storm

Worth Storm HyperLite (-13) FPOS13 Fastpitch Softball Bat

Our Rating: 4.9 stars

Rawlings is best known for making baseball and softball gloves, but they’ve also been making bats for decades. The Storm is targeted at the budget fastpitch bat market, and they are right on the money.

About the bat:

  • Ultra-light aluminum alloy bat allows for outrageous -13 drop
  • Extended barrel means larger hitting area for batters
  • Certified by major national fastpitch rules associations

Much like the Louisville Slugger, the price tag on this bat is eye-catching except this is on the other end of the spectrum. The aluminum alloy barrel doesn’t provide the same power as the composite bats, and the single-piece construction doesn’t provide the same flexibility or trampoline effect as the other two bats listed here. However, it’s the least expensive, and it’s one of the best inexpensive bats on the market.

Make your pick

Think about what is important for your athlete. If you want her to excel, you need the right fastpitch bat for your 10-year-old. If you can afford it, go for a composite bat with a drop of -10 or more, then head out for some batting practice.

Best Softball Fielders Masks for Youth (2017)

The softball fielders mask forms part of the major requirements for all softball players, for protection purposes and much more. Hence, if you are a softball player or a parent whose children have an interest in this game, then, this mask becomes an invaluable resource while in the playground, and it is wise to invest in one.

Manufacturers of these covers pay particular attention not only to the tastes and preferences of clients, but they also ensure that every cover they produce has all the characteristics of the best softball fielder’s mask.

Top 10 Best Softball Fielders Masks for Kids

* editor rating based on quality and value
MODELOUR RATING
Schutt Varsity Softball Titanium Fielder's Guard
Schutt Varsity Softball Titanium Fielder's Guard
4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)
Softball Fielders Face Mask in Black Youth
Softball Fielders Face Mask in Black Youth
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
SKLZ Field Shield
SKLZ Field Shield
4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)
Schutt Sports Softball Fielders Guard
Schutt Sports Softball Fielders Guard
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
Champro Softball Defensive Facemask - The Grill
Champro Softball Defensive Facemask - The Grill
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
RIP-IT Defense Softball Mask Blackout Technology
RIP-IT Defense Softball Mask Blackout Technology
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
Markwort Game Face Softball Safety Mask
Markwort Game Face Softball Safety Mask
4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)
RIP-IT Defense Softball Fielder’s Mask
RIP-IT Defense Softball Fielder’s Mask
5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
The Grill - Defensive Fielder's Face mask
The Grill - Defensive Fielder's Face mask
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
Mizuno Fielder's Face Mask
Mizuno Fielder's Face Mask
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Just like any other gaming gear that should be comfortable for the player to avoid distractions when in action, the softball fielders mask is light in weight and has all other necessary features to avail the much comfort needed, to fulfill its purpose as required. There are various aspects to consider when sourcing such a mask and these attributes are available in this article, to give insight to those who engage in softball games.

Features of Softball Masks

Some parents have children who have an interest in softball, or as a player who engages in the game, the purchase of a softball mask will depend on particular features that the cover bears. Here are some of the aspects of interest to look out for as you seek to purchase one.

Durability

In the course of your engagement in softball games, you will experience impact from various sources including the ball, other players, and the ground, among other things. As such, the mask of choice should be able to withstand such impact without damage. Hence, the appropriate softball mask should be able to serve you or your children over a considerable period, for you to realize value for your money.

Weight

While out in the field, players need to be as comfortable as possible in the appropriate gaming gear. Failure to observe this implies that such players may either underperform or remain susceptible to various injuries that can easily harm their health in one way or another. The weight of the softball mask should be appropriate for every wearer for comfort as well as ease of play.

View Area

The cover you opt for should have a view area that is large enough to allow you to see clearly without straining. Clear visibility is an essential requirement in softball games, and any obstruction of vision should be allowed at all cost. As much as this mask is intended for protection purposes, you also need to ensure that you go for one that avails you the widest view possible, while at the field.

Key Buying Advice

Whether you are buying the softball mask as a softball player or one to be used by your child who has an interest in the game, here are some of the useful details you need to bear in mind as you go out seeking for such masks.

Size

The size of the mask is one of the most important features to consider because you need one that fits on your head appropriately. There are various sizes of softball masks available in the market and to be sure that you get the right cover that fits, it is fair enough to be accompanied by the user as a parent to have them try the mask on before you make the purchase. Alternatively, you can check with outlets that allow you to return the cover for replacement, in case it does not fit the user if they did not accompany you.

Quality Standards

There are various rules put in place regarding softball masks by relevant authorities, and there may be a label on the helmet to ascertain that it certifies the quality standards set. Therefore, as you purchase one, you need to check out for the certification if you are conversant with it. For those who lack insight in this area, a knowledgeable individual at an outlet that supplies these masks should be in a position to explain these details.

Warranty

A guarantee is expected to cover the buyer as long as it remains active. The implication is that if the mask does not cover a certain period of appropriate use in a particular state, one should get in touch with the vendor for replacement. The various terms and conditions for a warranty to apply should come with the mask, and you can leverage on that as a buyer.

Other Attributes

The softball fielders mask has an ergonomic design that is more than a beauty trait but ensures correct fitting on the player’s head. For that reason, it securely fits on the head and does not fall off your head while in action at the field. A chipped cup is also available that increases the comforts of the mask on your head, even as you call out for a pop. The chin cup is adjustable as well for the wearer to set it correctly and it connects to the Y-shaped head strap.

The steel safety cells that compose the mask add the much needed variable flex technology that reduces the impact of external force on players. In the course of the game, players are prone to such injuries as concussions, skin contusions, black eyes, chipped teeth, busted noses, split lips, among others. Variable flex technology saves you such injuries that translate to medical bills on your part as the player.

For those who wear ponytails while in the game, it can cause several issues that may affect them negatively while on the field. Such distractions in the playground can have far-reaching effects on players, and the softball fielders mask addresses this by availing a strap that you can use to pull your ponytail through the opening to ensure that it is secure.

These among other attributes give you enough reasons why you need to consider a mask with most or all of these features to make sure that you are well equipped for action before you go out to the field. If you intend to play softball as a career, then careful consideration of these aspects affirms your appearance for most of the games that you will play in the days to come, with fewer worries about your health and safety.

Buying Guide: 5 Best Softball Cleats for Pitchers

First things first, why do pitchers need specialized cleats? The main reason is that a pitcher’s motion involves dragging the big toe part of the foot on the ground, and that can cause the cleat to wear, tear, and eventually develop a hole fast.

Therefore, if you are a pitcher, you need cleats that can not only last long but also help you play every game successfully and comfortably.

Today, softball is played by millions of people in over 100 countries, with the US alone boasting of a whopping 40 million active players. That is, of course, a large and lucrative market so it should not come as a surprise that there are so many manufacturers and brands of softball cleats. In fact, they are so many that choosing the best pair for you or your kid can be a very tricky affair. That is why we have created this simple guide for the best softball cleats for pitchers to help you pick a pair that will bring out the full potential in you or your kid.

Quick Buying Tips

The cleats you choose will contribute whether you will have a successful or lousy game. Remember that during the game your feet will have to support virtually all your body weight and prevent you from constantly slipping regardless of your motions. That means your cleats should be able to withstand a lot of pressure and heat while at the same time offering you comfort and stability throughout the game.

Here are some factors that you should consider.

Position

As a pitcher, you need cleats that will provide your push-off foot with power and also offer ankle support. High-top cleats are good for pitchers because they offer great ankle support despite the fact that they tend to limit mobility. On the other hand, low-top ones are good for outfield players because they allow one to be speedy.

The Cleats

Cleats offer the traction that will prevent you from slipping. They are made of hard plastic, rubber, or metal. There are two types of cleats, namely, molded and detachable. Regarding design, molded cleats are attached to the shoe permanently, and that makes them durable and easy to maintain. You might want to consider them particularly if you are an amateur or beginner. On the other hand, detachable ones can be removed from the sole. They are a popular choice among advanced players since they are classier, but their downside is that they wear down easily.

The Material

Cleats are made of either leather or synthetic material. While synthetic leather is more durable and rigid, leather is more flexible and comfortable. As a pitcher, you might want to opt for synthetic material because it is stronger and therefore your cleats will not develop holes.

Fit, Comfort, and Brand

An uncomfortable pair of cleats will be excruciating and will affect your performance in a negative way. You need to make sure that the pair you choose is flexible and fits the shape of your feet. It is better to sacrifice style for comfort. More often than not, a popular and renowned brand of cleats will offer you better service than one that is not. Be sure to check customer reviews and ratings to determine whether the manufacturer produces high-quality cleats.

Top 5 Best Softball Cleats For Pitchers

1. Mizuno Women’s 9-Spike Advanced Sweep 2 Fastpitch Cleat

Mizuno Women’s 9-Spike Advanced Sweep 2 Fastpitch Cleat

Our Rating: 4.8 stars

This pair of cleats weighs a mere 10 ounces (each) and is made of synthetic leather, which means it is durable and breathable. Its metal spikes offer an excellent grip, regardless of the surface, you are playing on. As far as comfort goes, the pair is sufficiently padded and fitted with a midsole for your feet’s comfort. It is shaped in a unique manner that dissipates impact forces away from your feet. That’s a very important factor because it prevents your feet from injuries like plantar fasciitis.

2. Adidas Performance Women’s PowerAlley 3 W Softball Cleat

Adidas Performance Women’s PowerAlley 3 W Softball Cleat

Our Rating: 4.6 stars

Adidas has a reputation for great quality, and this pair of cleats is no different. Made of synthetic leather and metal spikes, it features some of the most innovative technologies in footwear. For starters, it has a midsole that is cushioned with Litestrike for maximum absorption of pressure exerted by your bodyweight. It is fitted with thermoplastic polyurethane heel clips that prevent your heels from sinking into the ground. As an added advantage for pitchers, the pair has special toe caps that protect the cleats from wear and tear caused by the toe dragging movement of pitchers.

3. Ringors Women’s Diamond Dynasty Leather Spike with Pitchers Toe

Ringors Women's Diamond Dynasty Leather Spike with Pitchers Toe

Our Rating: 4.5 stars

This amazing pair of cleats is manufactured by Ringors specifically for softball pitchers. It features an EVA insole that provides the comfort that your feet need during the game. In addition to that, it is very flexible and will take the shape of your foot as long as you purchase the right size. It is fitted with a solid toe protection for more durability and better performance. Probably the only reason why it doesn’t get a 5-star rating is that of its high price which makes it unaffordable for some pitchers.

4. Mizuno Women’s 9 Spike ADV Finch Elite 2 Fast Pitch Molded Softball Cleat

Mizuno Women’s 9 Spike ADV Finch Elite 2 Fast Pitch Molded Softball Cleat

Our Rating: 4.5 stars

A darling among customers, this pair is made of thermoplastic polyurethane spikes that work almost exactly as metal spikes when it comes to offering stability and traction. Other impressive features include synthetic material for durability and sufficient padding for extra comfort.

5. 3Nt Rally PT Softball Cleats

3Nt Rally PT Softball Cleats

Our Rating: 4.3 stars

Compared to the other four, this pair of softball cleats excels in offering ankle support. Now that should be very good news for you as a pitcher, particularly if you suffer from frequent ankle injuries. For better performance, it is fitted with a toe bumper that not only protects your toe but also contributes to its durability.

Conclusion

For your best performance, you need to choose the best softball cleats because they will offer comfort and also help you remain stable in the field of play.

If you are new to the sport, you might want to start with the Mizuno Women’s 9-Spike Advanced Sweep 2 Fastpitch Cleats. The fact that they are made of synthetic leather makes them very durable, and that means you won’t have to go through many pairs of cleats before you master the game. In addition to that, they are comfortable and breathable. Those are two benefits that you want to take advantage of for the sake of your feet’s comfort.

If you are a master of the game then the Adidas Performance Women’s PowerAlley 3 W Softball Cleat is a perfect fit. Its footwear technology is designed specifically for pitchers, and that’s something that will enhance your performance. Otherwise, if you cant choose one of those two pairs don’t hesitate to consider the other options. All of them are worth every penny that you will pay.

Buying Guide: Best Softball Bats For Youth

Best Youth Softball Bats

In case you are not up to speed yet, current softball regulations require that a player of a certain age should use a particular bat that is designed specifically for that age.

On top of that, modern day bats feature way too advanced technology that not only helps you as a player but also adds some benefits like durability and ease of use. While all these advancements are excellent for players, they also make the selection of a softball bat a pretty hard thing to do.

In this very comprehensive guide, we are going to make it a lot easier for you to choose the best youth softball bats, whether you are a student in high school or college, or a parent buying a bat for your kid. We understand that having a softball bat is not enough; a player needs to have the best bat possible to unleash her full playing potential. That is why we have covered every major factor that you need to consider when making the purchase.

Top 10 Best Youth Softball Bats

* editor rating based on quality and value
MODELOUR RATING
Louisville Slugger Xeno Plus 17
Louisville Slugger Xeno Plus 17
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
DeMarini 2016 Uprising Fastpitch Softball Bat
DeMarini 2016 Uprising Fastpitch Softball Bat
4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)
DeMarini Female 2015 Vendetta Fastpitch Bat
DeMarini Female 2015 Vendetta Fastpitch Bat
5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Easton MAKO CXN ZERO 11
Easton MAKO CXN ZERO 11
4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)
Louisville Slugger Fastpitch X12
Louisville Slugger Fastpitch X12
4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)
DeMarini 2014 Bustos WTDXBFP Fastpitch Bat
DeMarini 2014 Bustos WTDXBFP Fastpitch Bat
5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Louisville Slugger LXT Hyper 17
Louisville Slugger LXT Hyper 17
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
Easton FS200 Fastpitch Softball Bat
Easton FS200 Fastpitch Softball Bat
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
Easton FS50 Fastpitch Softball Bat
Easton FS50 Fastpitch Softball Bat
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
DeMarini 2016 CF8 Insane Fastpitch Bat
DeMarini 2016 CF8 Insane Fastpitch Bat
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)

Key Buying Advice

Any softball player who has spent a couple of minutes or hours on the field is likely to have a bat type of preference. Some players prefer heavy ones while others opt for the light stuff. Others think they perform better with long bats while others have a liking for short ones.

But did you know there’s more to consider than just personal preferences? Check out these key factors:

Length of the Bat

The length of your softball bat is a huge factor because it will determine the effectiveness of your swing. You will under perform if your bat is either too long or too short.

-Choosing the best length for yourself

If you are in high school or college, you are old enough to measure yourself for a softball bat. The golden rule is that you ought to choose a bat that you can swing comfortably. In case you are not sure about that, try following these steps:

1. Determine your height and weight
2. Stretch your arm out and measure the length from your chest to the tip of your index finger.
3. Use the numbers and the chart below to know your ideal bat length.

Still not sure? Try the following alternative method:
4. With your arm stretched straight, hold the bat facing outwards (with its knob on your chest). If your arm can grab its barrel, then you are good to use it.

In case you are just replacing an old bat, make sure it is not more than an inch longer or shorter than your previous one.

-Choosing the best length for your kid

If your child is not old enough to determine the best softball bat length objectively, you can do that for her. Start by measuring your young player’s height. If it is anything between 3′ and 3’4″ then go for a 26-inch bat. If the child is taller than 3’4″, increase the bat length by 1 inch for every 4 to 5 inches that they are taller.

Weight of the Bat

Just like length, bat weight is a vital consideration when purchasing a softball bat. A heavy bat is not necessarily an effective one because you need to consider the amount of bat speed as well as inertia (force) that you can generate.

If your bat is long and light, you will swing it very fast, but it won’t have much inertia. On the other hand, a short and heavy bat will have plenty of inertia, but you will have trouble swinging it with speed.

Therefore, choose a bat that you feel you can swing in a speedy manner and still generate adequate inertia – one that is well balanced. Note that the balance differs from one person to another depending on such factors like energy, weight, and height among others.

Regulations

Many softball policies have been adopted in a bid to make the game safer, fair, and competitive. As far as bats go, here are the main laws to put in mind:

– If the player for whom you are buying the bat is of the Little League age, her bat should not be more than 33 inches long nor 2.25 inches in diameter.

– If the player is of the Pony League age, her bat should have the USSSA stamp. On top of that, a Pony League player’s bat should have a barrel that measures anything from 2.25 to 2.625 inches in diameter.

– If you are in high school or college, your bat should be Batted Ball Coefficient of Restitution (BBCOR) certified. The certification is indicated by a stamp on the right of the bat.

– Youth bats should have a 1.15 Bat Performance Factor (BFP). It is a measure of how fast the softball comes off the bat.

– High school and college players must use bats whose drop is no more than -3 (check below for more on the drop).

– It is important to point out that the league in which you play will influence the type of bat you use. For instance, some USSSA approved bats are not allowed in ASA competitions and vice versa. The good news is that some bats are approved for both leagues and those are the ones you want to buy.

Drop

Some quick facts:

1) Bat weight is equal to the minus or drop weight of the bat.
2) A bat’s drop weight is its length minus its weight.
3) A bat with a big drop weight is lighter than one with a small drop weight.

Construction

With regards to construction, there are multiple individual factors that will indicate whether the bat you have settled for is good enough. They include its material, design, and barrel.

-Material

A bat can either be made of wood or non-wood material. That said, wooden bats are usually reserved for professionals and new players who are still practicing. All the other players can use non-wood bats. In fact, virtually all youth players usually use metal bats because they don’t break, are light, easy to swing, and generate a lot of power. There are three types of metal bats, namely, composite, alloy, and hybrid bats.

1. Composite Bats
These are bats made of a layered material that resembles carbon fiber. While composite bats are extremely durable, they are not applicable in some youth leagues.

2. Alloy Bats
These bats are made using a mixture of aluminum and other metals. They are usually very appealing to the eye and also very durable. However, their downside is that they are very light in weight and might not generate the force you want.

3. Hybrid Bats
These bats feature an alloy barrel and a composite handle. They combine the advantages and disadvantages of composite and alloy bats.

-Design: One Piece vs. Two Piece

A one piece softball bat is one that is designed in such a way that the barrel and handle form one single structural piece, not two different pieces. On the other hand, a two-piece bat has a barrel that is different from the handle in structure. Some manufacturers use different materials for the two parts.
A one-piece bat is typically more balanced but is also stiff and will. That means you will feel a lot of vibration when you miss-hit the ball. On the other hand, a two-piece bat is very flexible and has less vibration.

-Barrel

A bat with a large barrel will make it easier for you to hit the ball but it will be harder to swing. This option is great if your child has a lot of energy. Otherwise, a smaller barrel might do just fine although it will take some serious training before the kid learns how to hit the ball with ease.

Other Considerations

-Your budget: conventional wisdom holds that an expensive item will perform better than a cheap one. But good economics and budgeting require you to buy the item you can afford. So don’t break the bank trying to impress your kid.

-The brand: in most cases, a well-known brand will be more superior compared to a little-known one. In addition to that, bats manufactured by strong brands have all or most of the certifications required by law.

Conclusion

An experienced player is likely to know the specifications of the bat she wants. Even so, if you are experienced and want to choose a new bat, make sure its length is no longer or shorter than an inch compared to your old bat. However, if you are buying a softball bat for a newbie, you might want to consider one that has a thick handle and big barrel. The thick handle will absorb most of the shock from the ball while the big barrel will make it hard to miss-hit the ball.

10 Best Slow-Pitch Softball Bats to Suit Your Needs

Softball is a sport enjoyed by millions of people each year and the equipment involved in the game is just as important as the skills of the player. Whether you or your teenager have chosen softball as your sport, you will need to carefully select the best slowpitch softball bat to ensure a comfortable and rewarding experience throughout the season.

With this in mind, we have gathered not only information but also a few selections of bats that you may find useful. Take the time to read through our guide and familiarize yourself with the different features of each bat and how they may be the right selection for your needs. Also, keep in mind the physical needs of the sport in order to select a bat that will complement your specific case.

Once you have determined your exact needs, refer to our chart to see which bat will be the best choice for you.

Top 10 Best Slow-Pitch Bats (2017)

* editor rating based on quality and value
MODELOUR RATING
COMBAT PG3SP5
COMBAT PG3SP5
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
Combat Derby Boys ASA Softball Bat DBSP7
Combat Derby Boys ASA Softball Bat DBSP7
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
Easton SP16S300 S300 Slowpitch Softball Bat
Easton SP16S300 S300 Slowpitch Softball Bat
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
DeMarini 2015 Ultimate Weapon Slowpitch Bat
DeMarini 2015 Ultimate Weapon Slowpitch Bat
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
Easton SK38 CYCLONE Slow Pitch Softball Bat -6
Easton SK38 CYCLONE Slow Pitch Softball Bat -6
4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)
Derby Boy G3 Slowpitch USSSA Bat 34 in L 26 oz
Derby Boy G3 Slowpitch USSSA Bat 34 in L 26 oz
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
Louisville Slugger Z4 USSSA Balanced Softball Bat
Louisville Slugger Z4 USSSA Balanced Softball Bat
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
2015 Miken Freak 12 Maxload USSSA
2015 Miken Freak 12 Maxload USSSA
5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
2015 Louisville Slugger Vapor Slowpitch Softball Bat
2015 Louisville Slugger Vapor Slowpitch Softball Bat
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
Easton Maple Slowpitch Softball Bat
Easton Maple Slowpitch Softball Bat
4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

Things to consider when purchasing a slow-pitch softball bat

While most teens will automatically lean towards that bright, shiny bat on the shelf and swear they “must” have it to succeed, it may not be the right bat for their needs. Research is the best bet before purchase, as the bat they want may be unsuited to their swing, strength and overall playing style.

There are several types of bats on the market, each with its set of features and composition, making the task seem to be a tedious process of elimination, but this does not need to be the case.

Here we have outlined some key points to consider in your purchase that could make all the difference in their success, at least where their equipment is concerned.

A few questions to ask yourself include:

  • How tall is my teenager?
  • How large are my teenager’s hands?
  • Does my teenager have strong wrists?
  • How serious is my teenager about this sport?
  • How much weight can my teenager swing comfortably?

These are all key questions you will have to answer before selecting a bat for your teenager as it will play a strong role in your teen’s gameplay. Take a moment to determine the answers and then continue, as we will explain the how different features can affect how you play.

How does the weight and length of a bat affect your swing?

When we swing an object like a bat, the weight and length create a pulling sensation. This is due to the effort our muscles must put out to complete a swinging motion. And when you swing it, your fingers, hands, wrists, forearms, upper arms, shoulders and even our back are using every muscle and tendon.

Therefore, if the bat we choose is too heavy, we are unable to swing it effectively, making it more difficult to play well. This is all tied to balance, which must be achieved for better gameplay. A poorly balanced bat can affect our swing as well, making the length and weight even more important in our selection.

Can the bat design change how it feels when the ball connects?

When the ball connects with the bat, we often experience a stinging sensation in our hands, wrists and sometimes even further into our shoulders. This is due to the vibration created upon contact. The design of the bat can indeed affect how strongly we feel this vibration and should be a key factor in our selection.

Pain is a sign that something is wrong. If we’ve chosen the incorrect equipment, it makes the process of correction more difficult, as we must decide whether the equipment or our position and swing are at fault. If we select a bat appropriately, this can help to quickly correct the problem and leave much more time to enjoy the game instead.

How can handle wraps affect my play?

Handle wraps are actually a useful feature on any bat.

These wraps help to minimize the impact of contact vibration on your hands and wrists. This, in turn, can help to lessen the fatigue experienced throughout the game and improve your overall performance.

While this feature is not the only solution to contact vibration, is can be the defining feature for your specific selection depending on your needs. If you experience a lot of pain in your hands from contact vibration, you may want to consider this feature when selecting your bat.

Our Chart

Now that you have had a chance to read a bit about how different features can affect your gameplay take a moment to look at the chart we have provided, which shows a selection of bats that you may want to consider. Remember to think about how height and weight will affect your swing, as well as the “sting” factor of contact vibration and select a bat that will appropriately suit your needs.

The bat you choose may be based on your or your teenager’s level of play, intention to play the sport for a long period, and specific physical needs. All of these are important and when taken into consideration will help to ensure a great experience out on the field.

Our pick

Our personal selection, after considering all of the available features, is the 2015 Miken Freak 12 Maxload.

The Triple Matrix Core and Flex 2 Power features, when added with a good handle wrap, have created an outstanding option. This, combined with the Aerospace Grade fiber construction made it a solid choice for our teen, as it helped to lessen the contact sting and seems to offer a bit more power to his swing, which was an area in which he needed a bit of help.

This bat may also help you or your teenager to excel in a sport they love if it is well-suited to your specific needs as it was to our own.

The important part is to have fun and enjoy the game, and we hope we’ve helped to make at least one part of your decision easier so you can spend more time out there playing.

10 Best Fast-Pitch Softball Bats 2017

Fast-Pitch Softball Bats

When you or your child choose to play softball, it is important to gear up with equipment that will properly suit your needs. This advice is especially true when shopping for the best fast-pitch softball bats on the market. While the cost of the equipment is often a factor that makes us cringe, the importance of a good quality bat is paramount.

Top 10 Best Fast-Pitch Bats for Kids (2017)

* editor rating based on quality and value
MODELOUR RATING
2016 Easton FP16S312 FS3 Fastpitch Softball Bat
2016 Easton FP16S312 FS3 Fastpitch Softball Bat
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
DeMarini Female 2015 Vendetta Fastpitch Bat
DeMarini Female 2015 Vendetta Fastpitch Bat
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)
Louisville Slugger Xeno Plus 17 (-10) Fast Pitch Softball Bat
Louisville Slugger Xeno Plus 17 (-10) Fast Pitch Softball Bat
4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)
Easton FS50 Fastpitch Softball Bat
Easton FS50 Fastpitch Softball Bat
4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)
Easton MAKO CXN ZERO 10 Fastpitch Softball Bat
Easton MAKO CXN ZERO 10 Fastpitch Softball Bat
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
Louisville Slugger 2012 TPS Quest Fastpitch Softball Bat
Louisville Slugger 2012 TPS Quest Fastpitch Softball Bat
4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)
Easton 2015 FP15MKY MAKO -11 Youth Fastpitch Softball Bat
Easton 2015 FP15MKY MAKO -11 Youth Fastpitch Softball Bat
4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)
Louisville Slugger Fastpitch X12
Louisville Slugger Fastpitch X12
5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Easton 2015 YB15MKT MAKO TORQ -10 Youth Baseball Bat
Easton 2015 YB15MKT MAKO TORQ -10 Youth Baseball Bat
5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Anderson Bat Company Women's Rocketech 2.0 Fast Pitch Softball Bat
Anderson Bat Company Women's Rocketech 2.0 Fast Pitch Softball Bat
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)

A properly weighted and balanced bat can help to avoid the sting that comes with hitting the ball. When the bat and ball connect, it results in a vibration which is felt up through the hands, wrists, elbows and even into the shoulder. If you wish to avoid this happening frequently, researching and selecting the right bat for you or your child is a great place to start.

A few questions to ask while selecting a bat would include:

What weight is suitable for my child’s wrist strength?

This question is important, as the weight of the bat will determine how your child swings and how quickly their arms become fatigued. A bat that is too heavy can cause eventual fatigue and even pain, which could lead to a very short season.

What length is best for my child?

Bat length affects the swing much like weight does. A bat needs to be balanced properly for it to be swung effectively, allowing for those great hits that every child dreams of. A bat too long can cause an awkward swing, resulting in fouls and even outs.

Why is the type of grip important?

The type of grip you choose affects the hands and wrists. A non-slip grip is important, as you want full and solid contact with the ball. If the hands slip, this can lead to a swing that wobbles, resulting in strikes and frustration. With a comfortable and solid grip, contact with the ball is more likely to be sure and true, offering better performance.

The Hit List

2016 Easton FP16S312 FS3 Fastpitch Softball Bat

First up we have the 2016 Easton FP16S312 FS3 Fastpitch Softball Bat. The construction of the barrel gives you a good feel for how you are hitting the ball, which may allow you to improve your hits by helping you to judge what adjustments you need to make. Other features of this bat are:

  • CXN ZERO 2-piece ConneXion Tech which is designed to limit vibration.
  • 29/32” composite bat handle with 1.2mm HYPERSKIN Grip designed to improve bat grip overall.
  • ASA, USSSA, NSA, SSUSA, ISA and ISF Certification for 98mph which allows the bat to handle a faster pitch and swing.

DeMarini Female 2015 Fastpitch Bat

Next, we have the DeMarini Female 2015 Fastpitch Bat. This bat has a variety of handy features that may aide your purchasing decision. Offering a decent range of weights and lengths, you may find this useful, as some batters fall into those tough weight ranges and need a bat that will complement their wrist strength. In addition to the weight and length range, this bat offers:

  • Paradox Barrel which lengthens the ball contact area considerably.
  • D-Fusion Lite handle to help minimize vibration on contact.
  • 1.20BPF Bat Standards have met adequately.
  • ASA, USSSA, ISF, NSA, and ISA approval.
  • Half and Half construction that allows for a balance of weight and control.

Louisville Slugger XENO Plus Fastpitch Softball Bat

Third on our list is the Louisville Slugger XENO Plus Fastpitch Softball Bat (-11). It is best to contact your softball association to check their approval of this bat, however, if you are looking for a balanced and reasonably designed bat, this may be in your range. The LS XENO offers features such as:

  • Performance Plus Composite crafting offering the batter a zero-friction design and double walled form.
  • iST and S1iD barrel technology that may suit your swing as it allows the barrel to flex.
  • A reasonable range of weights to help you match your wrist strength and batting style.
  • 7/8” Standard handle and a synthetic grip to help keep your hands where they belong during the swing.

Easton FS50 Fastpitch Softball Bat

Next up on our list is the Easton FS50 Fastpitch Softball Bat. These bats feature a -10 balance and an All Sport grip on a 31/32” handle. In addition to this balance and grip design, the bats offer an interesting array of features that could make a good addition to your equipment bag such as:

  • A range of weights that run from 15 oz. to 20 oz. on average.
  • Durable aluminum alloy design which offers lightweight feel and could help the speed of your swing.
  • 98mph certification with all prominent softball associations such as USSSA and many others.
  • Designed with new players in the youth leagues in mind.

Easton MAKO CXN ZERO 10 Fastpitch Softball Bat

Finally, we have the Easton MAKO CXN ZERO 10 Fastpitch Softball Bat. This bat has a list of features that just might fit the needs of any player overall. It’s bright design and -10 drop, along with solid construction could be the addition you need to improve your performance on the diamond. The variety of useful features list out as follows:

  • TCT Thermo Composite Technology which helps to slice the air as you swing, bringing out a faster swing overall.
  • The super-thin handle of 29/32” which provides more stability in your grip during a swing.
  • HYPERSKINTM Grip of 1.2mm offers a soft but firm grip that may help to keep your hands from sliding on contact.
  • CXN ZERO 2-piece ConneXion technology that can help to reduce vibration, which causes wrist pain and fatigue.
  • More barrel in the hitting zone, which offers to maximize contact with the ball and drive length.

Our pick for the best bat

Overall, the Easton MAKO CXN ZERO 10 Fastpitch Softball Bat is the best of the five. While all of the bats listed seem to have a nice range of features and offer performance, this bat appears to offer the most features and innovation.

As swing and contact vibration reduction as key elements in softball, the grip, and handle, as well as the ConneXion technology, offer a comfortable option that I would choose for myself or my child. With so much barrel in that sweet spot, the bat offers that little extra bit of contact to create distance and power, which I feel would keep my child playing.

As the desire to play provides a much-needed boost to morale, I feel that the overall construction of the bat, in addition to its reasonable cost, would lead to a great learning experience and offer a very good piece of equipment for any player to improve their performance with over time, making the cost of the sport itself well-worth the resulting smiles after a great game.