Spotlight on Summer Sport: Softball

2 October 2017

With the summer sport season fast approaching, Sport New Zealand is taking a look some of the options available for kids aged 5 to 8 years.


Dream of being one of the world champion Black Sox? It all starts with joining the Tee Sox.

Tee Sox is Softball New Zealand’s programme for 5 to 8-year-olds, designed for them to learn the basic skills of softball in a safe and supporting environment.

The Tee Sox season runs from October to March and is all about discovery, fun and participation.

“T-Ball is a natural and longstanding introduction to softball. Removing the element of pitching and making hitting easy, it’s assessable and fun for both girls and boys,” says Glen Roff, Softball Manager at Softball New Zealand.

“With Tee Sox we’ve created a modified version of the game with a softer ball, rotation of positions and equal play time for all kids. This means youngsters are in an environment where everyone can experience a measure of success and are more likely to have fun and remain in the game.”

There’s a strong focus on learning through play – throwing, fielding and the tricks of hitting a ball with a bat – but it’s also about enjoyment and social interaction. Games are usually completed in 45 minutes and there is often a family atmosphere around the grounds and in the clubhouse, making Tee Sox a great introduction to the club environment for kids and their families.

Softball is a great family game and there are also opportunities for mum and dad to play socially – just ask your local club.  

From age 8 children progress from Tee Sox to Rookie Sox, which provides an easy transition to softball and the introduction of pitching. 

Getting started

There are over 120 clubs nationwide from the Kaikohe to Bluff.  The best way to locate the club in your neighbourhood is via the Softball New Zealand website.

What you need

T-ball is an inexpensive sport to play. Clubs often provide T-Ball bats, helmets and sometimes gloves. Uniforms are also provided by the club, but you should expect to return them at the end of the season. Gloves and helmets are optional.

Club fees

T-Ball subscriptions vary from club to club, generally around $60 a season.

More information

You can learn more about T-ball and Softball and find your nearest club on the Softball NZ New Zealand website or Facebook page.