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How To Use Your Jugs Soft Toss Machine in 6 Easy Steps

I wanted a simple and convenient way to practice hitting by myself so I purchased a Jugs Soft Toss machine. I was lucky enough to have a teammate who brought his machine to our practices so I already had a good understanding of how it worked, but those who have never used this machine will want to know how it works (especially if you’re planning on spending a bunch of money to get one). So I wanted to put together this quick guide to answer one simple question – how does the Jugs toss machine work?

The Jugs Toss machine works by setting the machine on a flat surface, filling the ball feeder, and flipping the switch to “on”. The machine will deliver a soft toss pitch every 6 seconds.

Steve Nelson in a backyard swinging at a soft toss pitch from a Jugs Soft Toss machine

Once you’ve seen the machine you’ll have a pretty good understanding of how it works. By the end of this article, you’ll fully understand the 6 simple steps of how the Jugs soft toss machine works.

Pro tip: Read my complete Jugs Soft Toss machine review to learn what it’s like to train with this soft toss machine.

Video Overview of How The Jugs Soft Toss Machine Works

I prefer to see something demonstrated before I purchase it so I threw together this quick video to show how the Jugs Toss machine works. Or you can scroll past this video to see a step-by-step guide to how it works.

Step 1 – Set Up a Hitting Net

Steve Nelson setting up a hitting net in the backyard

While a hitting net is not required to perform drills with your Jugs Soft Toss machine, most players will be using a hitting net for their drills.

Using a hitting net allows players to hit by themselves. A hitting net also stops balls from going out into the field, which makes it much simpler to gather up all the balls you’ve hit.

Once you’ve got your hitting net set up, you’re ready to get your Jugs Toss machine into position.

If you don’t already have a hitting net, I recommend getting this Zelus 7×7 hitting net from Amazon. This is the hitting net I use and it works great. Plus, it also comes with a hitting tee.

Step 2 – Place Your Jugs Machine on a Flat Surface

Steve Nelson adjusting a Jugs Soft Toss machine so it is laying on flat ground
Make sure the Jugs Soft Toss machine is on flat ground

It can actually be a little challenging to find a flat surface when you’re using the Jugs Toss machine outdoors, but you’re going to want to find a flat surface if you want the machine to deliver consistent pitches.

If the machine is tilting back too much then it will deliver pitches too high. The pitches will float from the top of the strike zone to the bottom of the strike zone. If the machine is tilting forward too much then pitches will be quicker and lower in the strike zone.

Some tilt is not the end of the world, but flatter surfaces make for better pitches.

Step 3 – Fill the Ball Feeder

Steve Nelson filling up a Jugs Soft Toss machine ball feeder with baseballs

The Jug Soft Toss machine can hold 14 baseballs or 10 softballs. Simply fill up the ball feeder with whichever type of ball you’re practicing with.

Step 4 – Aim the Pitches 

Steve Nelson testing a pitch delivered from a Jugs Soft Toss machine
Test where the pitches will be delivered

The Jugs Machine has one metal arm that delivers pitches and it delivers pitches in almost the exact same spot every time.

Aim your Jugs machine so the pitch will be delivered into your strike zone.

Typically I’ll use a couple of baseballs from the ball feeder and test to see where the pitch is getting delivered.

If you’re using a hitting net, make sure the pitches are not aimed too far away from the hitting net. If you’re too far away there’s a good chance you could accidentally hit the ball over the net.

Step 5 – Flip the Switch to “On”

Steve Nelson turning on a Jugs Soft Toss machine that is full of baseballs

There’s only one switch at the top of each Jugs Soft Toss machine and it also happens to be red. It’s very easy to spot.

All you need to do to turn on the Jugs Toss machine is flip the red switch.

Step 6 – A Pitch is Thrown Every 6 Seconds

Steve Nelson swinging at a soft toss pitch that was delivered by a Jugs Soft Toss machine

After the machine is on, it will deliver a pitch every 6 seconds.

Most other websites, including Jugs’ website, says a pitch is delivered every 5 seconds. But I’ve used this machine for a while and it actually delivers a pitch every 6 seconds.

Either way, make sure you hustle back to your starting spot so you can get ready for that first pitch.

Simply perform your drill until the ball feeder is empty.

A pitch every 6 seconds means if you fill up the machine’s ball feeder with its max of 14 baseballs, you’ll be finished with your round in 84 seconds. If you fill up the ball feeder with its max of 10 softballs, you’ll be finished with your round in 60 seconds.

After a few pitches, you’ll also get very familiar with the sound of the machine. It has a unique sound while the metal arm is turning which makes it very easy to know when the next pitch is getting delivered.

Remember to Keep Your Jugs Toss Machine Charged

A Jugs Soft Toss machine charging on a wood floor

The battery on a Jugs Toss machine lasts a long time, which is both a good thing and a bad thing.

The good news is the battery lasts roughly 8 hours so you can get in a lot of swings before needing to charge it again.

The bad news is that because the battery lasts so long, it’s easy to forget to charge it.

What I’ll do is use my Jugs Soft Toss machine about 10 times before I charge it again. I just leave it plugged in and charging all night and that seems to work great for me.

There’s no battery indicator on a Jugs Soft Toss machine so make sure you keep in mind how much battery you think is left.

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Steve Nelson

I'm the owner of Baseball Training World. I live in Denver, Colorado and I enjoy playing baseball in an adult baseball team in the surrounding area. Read more about Steve Nelson.