I feel the best baseball practice net is the Bow Net, especially for soft toss. I use my Bow Net Big Mouth by Bow Net in virtually every practice. Continue reading to find out more about this net as well as the others I have used.
The Best Baseball Practice Net
Now to be fair, I have also used the Jugs Instant Screen and the Easton 7 foot pop up catch net. After evaluating and using all three products I feel pretty confident that I am using the best baseball net for practice with my club team. To find out why I selected the Bow Net as the best baseball practice net, keep reading.
The Easton 7 Foot Pop Up Catch Net
I will work from worst to first. The Easton Screen is big and square but it combines the worst of both worlds. It has the same kind of coil wire frame you find in sunscreens. You need to be a wizard to fold the thing up and if you do it wrong you can bend the metal and end up with an oddly shaped screen. Add to that, this screen has two tent poles that can become damaged or lost and you have a product with too many points of failure.
When it starts out it looks great, but I went through two of these (about one a season) before I switched to…
The Jugs Instant Screen
This is a staple for most baseball programs. I have rarely met a coach who did not have a jugs net. It seems like a right of passage. You have to buy one of these then you have to learn how to put it away. After putting away a Jugs net you feel like an origami expert. I swear I could fold a couch into a paper crane now. But I have to give it to Jugs, I have only bought one of these. And that was almost 5 years ago. The thing lasts.
My only complaint? It gets “wonky”. Sometimes the combination of straps, and wind, make this net feel like it is one solid hit from collapsing into a pile of fishnet and springs. Yet it doesn’t. It just keeps catching baseballs. I figured it would be the last baseball net I ever bought until I saw my first Bow Net.
The Bow Net
This net is bar far the easiest to put together and the easiest to put away. It may not be the fastest (lots of moving parts) but it is easy. That it is because it has no folding. You just put the pieces together, and take them apart and put them in the bag.
Plus the shape of the net is large – like the Easton, but rugged like the Jugs. The one downside to the Bow Net is that it has flat side panels on either side of the big mouth opening. This can be an issue. I once had two players hit balls directly into the net and the balls came rocketing back to their faces. Neither the coach nor I was expecting it.
The players and I have since learned to carefully set up toss to minimize this, but it’s baseball. I have never seen a kid get hit in the face from a ball bouncing back out of a Jugs or an Easton. It should not happen at all but I don’t really know what you could do to prevent it.
I highly recommend the Bow Net. The best baseball practice net I have found. It has been a great addition to our coaching tools.