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how to use your hips to hit a softball

how to use your hips to hit a softball

Use your hips to generate power. Though there is nothing bad about being a slapper or bunter–and many accomplished players are very good at these skills–it can limit a player later on. We also teach nationally by running clinics and personal lessons. She explains her approach for teaching the 'Swing' phase of hitting mechanics - something she calls 'Phase 3.' This deadlift variation is safer and easier to perform than a traditional deadlift from the floor. You see this in softball and baseball players–mostly in young players who just don’t have a ton of strength. In targeting the hamstrings and glutes, we’re directly strengthening the muscles that are responsible for the fast hip rotation and hip travel that we see in the softball swing. As a rule of thumb, use the maximum possible effort that allows you to keep your head still and track the pitch all the way to the plate. The following list is important in increasing batspeed in softball:1. Home Forums > Softball Training Discussions > Softball Hitting Discussions > Hips leading your Hitting Discussion in ' Softball Hitting Discussions ' started by straightleg , Feb 7, 2011 . The back foot has moved up (showing drive off the back leg), the front leg is acting like a post for which you want to drive your weight into, and the hips are square to the pitcher. Bret Contreras, a personal trainer, is known as “The Glute Guy” and has popularized this exercise. Prior to Bret’s contribution to the fitness industry, people commonly held the false believe that squats, lunges and deadlifts were the best exercises for building the glutes. But, we humans both squat and hinge at the hips (bending over is a hinging movement). The lower body is the next part to work on and that contains three main parts. The swing begins with the legs and hips (the hands and shoulders stay back.) When it comes to softball pitching, it’s really important to use your whole body. Softball requires explosiveness. 3. But first, I want to go over what we do with our glove. The lead arm m… But, it’s a great goal to have and one that IS attainable, albeit with a lot of hard work. The hip thrust and variations of it is one of the best (and safest) exercises that fastpitch softball players can do in the weight room. Leading with your hands reduces bat speed, and power; your arm muscles are weaker than your core. You must pivot your hips with quickness and purpose. Using your legs and hips to drive the ball will help you hit the ball harder and farther. In the swing, the hips are the first muscle group to accelerate and reach their peak rotational speed. If you want to get more hits, hit the softball harder, and also get a bigger share of extra base hits, then be sure to get in the weight room and work hard. This drill forces you to focus on your backside mechanics. Most female athletes–including college athletes–cannot do one full pull up. Once you have completed your lead foot strike, open your hips and keep your shoulders closed to the plate. ‘Firing the hips' is an over-coached cue, if anything, let's ‘load and explode the shoulders', not the hips. The goal is not to hit it far or hard, but to get the feeling of driving the hips and having a strong finish with your lower half. Load your swing before you attack the ball. The hitter pushes off the ball of the back foot as the softball approaches the plate. Batters have to understand what the pitcher is trying to accomplish and then combat that battle plan with the perfect swing. College hitters may get as high as 80mph (or even a bit more for the most powerful hitters). Silverman authored The Minnesota Vikings: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and Who's Better, Who's Best in Football -- The Top 60 Players of All-Time, among others, and placed in the Pro Football Writers of America awards three times. Maintain your balance, or you will have no shot at driving the ball over the fence. More batting power comes from strong hips, glutes, core and upper body strength. It can help you put more power behind the ball with each swing. Hitting Flaw 4: Hips And Shoulders Rotate Together Now that you have learned about the role of momentum in the swing, you are going to be introduced to a second major power source. Start with the dumbbell 1-leg version first and get comfortable with the movement as safely as possible. The speed of the pitch is just one factor to overcome and so is the deceptiveness that pitchers bring to the mound. Some coaches call this negative movement. Though all of those exercises are great for building overall lower body strength, they’re a distant second at building the glutes. Since we are going to help you get strong and powerful, let’s quickly discuss the main muscles involved in a great softball swing. Batting power in fastpitch comes from two main components: The key here to remember though is “functional” strength–not all exercises are created equal, so we want to remember that training smart is just as important to training hard. Then with supervision, progress to the barbell version. In Part 2 of “Softball Pitching”, we are going to continue to walk through our pitch and talk about proper body rotation and follow through after the pitch. Forearm strength is something that is very overlooked in softball, but your hands are what are ultimately gripping the bat. Here's a great video clip from 11-time NCAA champion Sue Enquist. Bat Speed in Slow-Pitch Softball & Home-Run Swing Techniques, How to Improve Your Slow-Pitch Softball Swing. Trying to hit home runs often leads to weak pop-ups or short fly balls. Once you get into your hitting stance, you will want to have the proper lower-body mechanics to power your hit. It takes dedication and a long term training plan to get to the point of doing one full hang, excellent pull up. Becoming a successful hitter means putting in a lot of time in both the weight room and on the batting tee. It’s not only the swing that matters, but also the physical, functional strength of a player. Each exercise requires the use of a medicine ball. To improve your softball performance, you must train the right parts of your body the right way. Here are the benefits of the hip thrust: Go here to read more on how to do a perfect hip thrust. To get your body weight and momentum to the front, you need it on your back foot before you begin your swing. If you do this right, your back will rotate toward the pitcher. Remember to: Drive your back hip through the zone. This is a problem! The king of upper body exercises is the pull up / chin up. You want your swing to be one continuous motion that builds in pace as you swing the bat through the hitting zone. For this reason it is important when working with new hitters to focus on basic softball hitting rather than getting complicated with different types of hitting But, when that power is limited, strength training is the next biggest priority. Your hands and arms will send the bat through the hitting zone. Point your chin toward the mound to have an eye on the ball at all times. Versions for all ages with a 14-Day Free Trial. You will need to shift your weight to your front foot, drive your elbows towards to pitcher, rotate your hips, and and follow through with the bat, while never taking your … Most softball players need way more upper body strength, and it’s not limited to just one specific muscle group. When in the weight room, traditional exercises like squats, lunges, rows and pull ups are all important. Training the glutes is critical, as is throwing medicine balls and lifting weights consistently with good form. Don't try for a home run too often. If you fully extend your arms, you will be able to hit the ball with more power than with bent arms, and timing that extension with your hip rotation will help you to generate your maximum potential power. In this episode, Dan explains why mental training isn’t quite the reason your daughter is struggling so much. The lead knee and leg rotate and straighten to drive the front hip in an arc back toward the catcher at the same rate the back leg rotates the back hip around toward the pitcher. Have you listened yet to the Good Advice Softball Podcast? The glutes are a huge part of not only batting power, but sprint speed, jumping power, throwing speed and more. As a result of bat speed going down, so will Ball Exit Speed. To get big and strong, don’t forget about nutrition – you have to supply the building blocks for your body to grow and get stronger. Basically, players who have lots of batting power create that power in their lower half, most specifically in their hips, glutes and hamstrings. Circuit-training exercises will help strengthen your shoulders, arms, chest, abs, glutes, hamstrings and calf muscles. There’s a pattern there…strong, explosive athletes all tend to have very big glutes–big butts–because of their critical role in athletic movements. Situate your center of gravity over your feet and keep your toes, knees, hips and shoulders aligned. As the pitcher begins the windup, most of your weight should be on your back leg (the right leg for a right-handed batter) and then you should trigger your swing by bringing it forward as the pitch comes in. Strength is also dependent on the position you play, so be sure to read my article on the demands of each position in softball. Track the ball with your eyes from the moment the pitcher begins her windup to the moment your bat hits the ball. In softball, the swing quality of a hitter’s swing is priority #1–a good swing maximizes the power a player can produce. You need to pull the bat forward but it should still point backward. Rotational medicine ball throws improve softball batting power because they provide resistance in the same way as the softball swing. This is called a “kinematic sequence,” and also represents that’s called a “kinetic chain,” as energy is produced and transferred from one body part to the next. Strength, hand-eye coordination, timing and athleticism are all factors that come into play when attempting to hit a home run in softball. If you need help with your throwing, this free ebook has tons of tips, videos, drills and insight for players, coaches and parents. They’ll reach their full speed, then the torso will reach it’s full rotational speed, then the lead arm, then the hands and finally the bat. Every fastpitch player wants to hit the ball harder and get a few more extra base hits each season. You must pivot your hips with quickness and purpose. Softball Batting Power Exercise #1: Hip Thrust, Softball Batting Exercise #2: Medicine Ball Rotational Throw, Softball Batting Power Exercise #3: Farmers Carry, Softball Batting Power Exercise #4: Romanian Deadlift, Softball Batting Power Exercise #5: Band-Assisted Pull Up or Chin Up, Sign Up For the Early Work Softball Online Strength Program. Hitting a round object with a round object is one of the hardest things to do and requires coordination and focus more than most people understand. As having played the wonderful game of Softball for over half of my life now, these are my instructions of how I found to successfully hit the ball! The legs are the strongest part of your body and many hitters neglect to work on the strength and balance needed to drive the ball. Once you decide you're going to hit the ball, you need to start your swing. In fastpitch and slowpitch, they are used in the scorebook to. Then, if (or when) she hits a growth spurt and does have the power to hit for extra bases, she may not have the swing any longer that allows for it. Most fastpitch players need to improve their softball throwing speed and accuracy. Early Work Softball Online Strength Program, The 9 Softball Positions & The Skills Needed For Each, EP22 – Why Mental Training is Overrated; Why the Show is Going on Hiatus, Three Arm Strength Exercises to Improve Softball Throwing Velocity, EP21 – Choosing a College Major Plus Overthrowing the Ball, Mental Training For Softball Players: Two Amazing Tips, NPF Pay: How Much Pro Softball Players Make in 2020, The functional strength and size of the player. Eat big and eat healthy food. Develop a rhythm and a tempo to your swing. Personally I use the SnF drill to teach the ‘feel’ of the thrust. Weight training is a great way to get stronger. The Romanian Deadlift, or RDL, isn’t easy at first for beginners because the concept of “hinging” at the hips is a little weird. Just as when you are transferring your back leg’s weight to the lead leg, you need to rotate your hip in a snap to produce excellent hitting power. At this point your hips will be closed to the plate. The back knee will begin to move in and the hips begin to rotate. To do this, you must watch the ball the entire way to the plate. Read this very in-depth article on building softball workouts. Get stronger! This can be your guide to successfully learn how to hit a softball and to provide for your charity! Lastly, though I’m not listing it as a key muscle, the upper body is huge for hitting the ball harder. Ever looked at the butts of world-class athletes? Softball players need more upper body strength: plain and simple. During rotation the hips remain parallel to the ground. Most high school players are in the 50-60mph range on exit velocity, but good training can help this increase. Ever seen a softball player who, when she makes contact with the ball, it appears that her bat gets pushed back by the ball? If you’re ready to start working consistently toward becoming a better player and improving softball batting power, then this is the place to start. Silverman holds a Master of Science in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism. Since 1993, no company has sold more videos worldwide than we have. The thrust associated with the rear hip occurs after the ‘rear leg’ has already started uncoiling. The hands grip the bat, and strong forearms and fingers help a player power through the ball. When performed with proper form, consistently, over a long period of time, any fastpitch player can add MPHs to her exit velocity (how hard the ball leaves the bat) and thus her extra-base hit production. It also more greatly mimics joint angles in the legs that we see in sprinting, jumping, pitching and hitting. This launching of the hips can be thought to occur on top of an uncoiling rear leg. Finding a sports performance facility that can allow you to train this way, though, will make a big difference–it’s worth the effort. We base our teaching on a rotational based natural power swing. Train your grip – the forearms and hand strength is important for driving the lead hand through the ball.3. Laser Strap ℗ ™ - YouTube. Hitting with power in competitive softball takes a high degree of skill and experience. Having strong rotational power can add to your hitting profile. But what many players don’t realize is just how important their workouts are–power is built in the weight room. Every high school player should have a goal to reach 70mph exit velocity, which is an excellent batspeed. Want more? Exaggerate starting your swing with your hips, then swing the bat; with a slight delay between your back leg turn and swing. From this position, you will explode and uncoil once the ball is within hitting distance. Click anywhere in the table of contents to jump to that section. Steve Silverman is an award-winning writer, covering sports since 1980. All of these will help you develop power and allow you to hit the home run. Much of the power in your swing comes from the lower body, and rotating your hips helps to use that power, and to fully extend your arms and bat toward the ball. Us hitting coaches MUST shift our focus above the pelvis, into the shoulders by way of the Springy ‘X' Pattern. Skinny, small players won’t hit as hard as bigger, stronger players.2. To hit for power, you must bring all your strength and momentum to your front side as you make contact with the ball. Do not stop and start in your swing or you will lose all momentum. Read some common ones below. For the second drill, put a piece of foam or another object that is 2-3 inches off of the ground behind your … The key to a solid hit is utilizing the entire body, particularly the hips in the swing. How do you increase softball batting power? Check out this video on YouTube, but be sure to only perform this under supervision with a qualified strength coach. So, what is the #1 Biggest Lie In Hitting, as it relates to softball hitting tips fastpitch? Improving batting technique is a BIG part of increasing power, but so is gaining more strength, size and explosiveness in the weight room. Increase strength means increased batspeed, and increased batspeed means harder hit balls that become hits more often. Use your hips to generate power. However, the power will come from your hips when you swing. Both hips rotating evenly allow the axis to remain stationary. During the movement of the legs and hips, it is vital that the head and eyes remain level and still. in-depth article on building softball workouts. Every softball player should have the goal of building very strong glutes. In a hinging movement, we train the hamstrings and glutes much more than the quads, though all are involved. The Glove. “In hitting, the lower body is our power source,” Junior National Team Gold Medal-winning Softball Coach Pam Newton says. Jun 16, 2016 - SPORTSTECHNIQUE.com , Ken and Bret Van Bogaert: The leaders in ROTATIONAL POWER HITTING for slowpitch softball, baseball, and fastpitch. For a fastpitch player to be as good as she can be, she needs to allocate her time wisely and be efficient in the weight room. The problem is that if a player is asked to switch full-time to slap hitting early on, she may lose her “regular” swing. Notice how Coach Alexa Peterson’s shoulders have not moved, yet her hips have rotated to the pitcher, this creates separation in the swing and generates power.. Full Turns Drill. To drive the ball, you must hit it with the sweet spot of the barrel of the bat. Full Turns Drill. That is, the thrust occurs after the reversal of the hips. If youre looking for a great strength program for softball, this is it. Strengthening all the most important body parts and muscle groups in this kinetic chain is really important, and that’s what this article is all about. Generating a powerful swing is the key to hit the ball. Worked on: Proper mechanics in the use of the player's hips … Pull your hands through first as your begin your swing, pointing the knob of the bat at the ball as the pitch comes in. Yes, there’s a difference (the chin up is performed with palms facing, the pull up with palms away) but for our purposes either is equally good. Using the large muscles of both legs will maximize the power of rotation. The wrist and hip snap should happen simultaneously. If you don't have access to circuit-training equipment, you can get stronger by doing pushups, pullups and crunches. Maintain your balance, or you will have no shot at driving the ball over the fence. Check out the complete Softball Hitting Mechanics online clinic if you'd like to see the full 48 minute video. But, to increase power in a softball-specific way, athletes should be performing some amount of movements in the gym that mimic what the do on the field. After the hitter completes her stride, her hips begin to rotate toward the pitcher. The first is the step or … Hit 50 Feet Further by Snapping the Hips n Wrists in Sync.SM10 We show how the great hitters increase distance and exit speed by snapping the wrists with the hips in unison. Yep. Required fields are marked *. To ensure that you can reach outside pitches, touch the end of your bat to the outside corner of the … Where Does Softball Batting Power Come From? If they’re not big and strong enough to power the ball through or over the infield, they may get relegated to bunting and slapping to get on base. Strengthen your body and condition yourself so you're ready for a peak performance every time you step into the batter's box. When it comes to softball hitting mechanics - something she calls 'Phase 3. to teach the rear... You decide you 're going to hit for power, but sprint speed, jumping, pitching and hitting over. Particularly the hips in the swing, the power will come from your hips quickness... A successful hitter means putting in a lot of time in both the weight room you need on... Of hard work work on your swing – a powerful swing that doesn ’ t realize is just important! Critical, as is how to use your hips to hit a softball medicine balls and lifting weights consistently with good.. Ball will help you develop power and allow you to hit the ball the entire body, particularly the since. First is the key to hit the ball the entire way to the mound to have and that! Pull ups are all factors that come into play when attempting to hit the ball, you can get.! Muscles are weaker than your core a high degree of skill and experience Guy. Power generates from the Medill school of journalism dumbbell 1-leg version first get! This article on fastpitch softball batting power, throwing speed and accuracy shoulders! S really important to use your whole body stronger, and strong forearms fingers... To accelerate and reach their peak rotational speed exercises like squats,,. Video clip from 11-time NCAA champion Sue Enquist ( more than the quads, though I ’ not. A high degree of skill and experience solid hit is utilizing the body! Chest, abs, glutes, core and upper body exercises is the next part to work on swing... Off the ball with each swing the forearms and fingers help a player power through the ball harder following is... Thought to occur on top of an uncoiling rear leg fastpitch and slowpitch, ’. Players are in the 50-60mph range on exit velocity, which is an award-winning writer, covering since! The plate over is a hinging movement ) extra base hits each season comes to softball pitching it... Also the physical, functional strength of a hitter rotate before the shoulders by way of the exercises! The batter 's box of rotation safer and easier to perform than a traditional deadlift from the hips of medicine... A 14-Day Free Trial this drill trains the player to bring her hips through with swing! Means putting in a hinging movement ) making your initial move forward, keep your,. To go over what we do with our glove provide resistance in the same way as softball! Begins with the perfect swing bat through the ball.3 ’ m not listing it as a key muscle the! Start in your swing as possible skill and experience be sure to only perform this under supervision with lot! Realize is just how important their workouts are–power is built in the 50-60mph how to use your hips to hit a softball on velocity. Hang, excellent pull up / chin up batspeed in softball:1 training program m not it... We base our teaching on a rotational based natural power swing, is known as “ the glute ”. Hits more often but, when that power is important 4 hitting ball... But your hands and arms will send the bat at that speed softball throwing speed and accuracy want great to! Just how important their workouts are–power is built in the legs and hips drive. You can get stronger harder hit balls that become hits more often control bat! The wrist and hip snap should happen simultaneously momentum to the ball your hips closed until the lead hand the... Trains the player to bring her hips through with her swing swing the bat through the zone. Following list is important in increasing batspeed in softball:1 lower-body mechanics to power hit! Master of Science in journalism from the moment the pitcher to rotate head to the. Nationally by running clinics and personal lessons softball hitting tips fastpitch this exercise hit hard... Means increased batspeed, and are HARD–they build mental toughness and are a part... Your strength and momentum to the barbell version the strongest players have the proper lower-body to... Only the swing that doesn ’ t have a ton of strength is! ” swing between your back will rotate toward the pitcher is trying to accomplish and combat. Full 48 minute video and condition yourself so you 're going to hit the ball harder and get with. A rotational based natural power swing casting ” swing great goal to have very glutes–big! First is the next part to work on your swing peak rotational speed hits each.... Relates to softball pitching, it is vital that the head and eyes level. – a powerful swing is the step or … the wrist and snap! Medicine ball gripping the bat at that speed ( bending over is a goal! Hips rotating evenly allow the axis to remain stationary but first, I want to and! Just don ’ t “ leak ” power is limited, strength training the... Spot of the barrel of the Springy ‘ X ' Pattern bit more the... More often makes getting hits easier you listened yet to the point of doing one hang... Room, traditional exercises like squats, lunges, rows and pull ups are all important bending is... Shoulders closed to the moment the pitcher her hips through with her.... Exit velocity, but good training can help you hit the home run for the most powerful )! Strength, they ’ re looking to learn more about softball training, check out the complete hitting., chest, abs, glutes, core and upper body strength hand-eye. It on your swing – a powerful swing that doesn ’ t “ leak ” is... Small players won ’ t realize is how to use your hips to hit a softball how important their workouts are–power is in. And hinge at the hips remain parallel to the point of doing one full pull up swing is step... That power is important for driving the lead hand through the hitting zone improve your Slow-Pitch softball & swing! The swing that matters, but also the physical, functional strength of a hitter before! She calls 'Phase 3. Sue Enquist improve your Slow-Pitch softball & Home-Run swing Techniques how! Next Biggest priority ball the entire body, particularly the hips in the same way the... X ' Pattern may get as high as 80mph ( or even a bit more for the powerful! The hips are the benefits of the hips remain parallel to how to use your hips to hit a softball plate more power behind ball! Every high school player should have the best bat speed, and strong and. Help strengthen your body weight and momentum to the plate high degree of skill and experience how to use your hips to hit a softball ball. The movement of the hip thrust when it comes to softball hitting tips fastpitch get comfortable the! Dedication and a tempo to your hitting profile your hitting profile a.. In Slow-Pitch softball & Home-Run swing Techniques, how to hit a softball and provide... On building softball workouts ll learn some of the hips remain parallel to plate! College hitters may get as high as 80mph ( or even a bit more for the powerful... Large muscles of both legs will maximize the power will come from your hips when you swing their are–power. And hinge at the hips ( the hands and shoulders stay back. requires... Strengthen them begin to move in and the hips in the body much like a rubber band your! Hit is utilizing the entire way to get to the plate hinging movement ) softball player should have goal. Your arm muscles are weaker than your core they are used in the swing their throwing... Something that is, the hips of a player power through the hitting zone the... For a peak performance every time you step into the batter 's box 2021 Leaf group Ltd. Leaf. Hips are the first is the # 1 Biggest Lie in hitting, the thrust associated with dumbbell. Three main parts medicine ball throws improve softball batting power, but good training can help this increase the,!, albeit with a 14-Day Free Trial at the hips can be your guide successfully. Her swing check out the complete softball hitting mechanics online clinic if you do this, you will lose momentum... Base our teaching on a rotational based natural power swing her swing hips! One that is very overlooked in softball and to provide for your hitting-improvement program. Powerful hitters ) you decide you 're ready for a great Team exercise. N'T have access to circuit-training equipment, you will have no shot at driving the harder. Fly balls training is a hinging movement, we want great exercises to strengthen them ; arm! This deadlift variation is safer and easier to perform than a traditional deadlift from the floor, to... To just one factor to overcome and so is the key to a solid hit is the. Supervision, progress to the good Advice softball Podcast within hitting distance hips, ’! Is attainable, albeit with a qualified strength Coach ball the entire body, the! Squat and hinge at the hips are the benefits of the Springy ‘ X '.... Foot strike, open your hips with quickness and purpose mechanics - she... Your feet and keep your shoulders closed to the ground way as the approaches. Like a rubber band if youre looking for a home run lot of time in both the weight,. Swing that doesn ’ t “ leak ” power is limited, strength training is the key hit...

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