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Re: Re: Re: When mechanics DO NOT work

Posted by: () on Fri Feb 14 17:05:31 2003

The information below is what I wrote below in another post but I think it applies here also. This was directed at a fastpitch question but it applies to baseball also. The amount of time to react is a little longer but you should get the point. The question being asked was what a hitter is consentrating about/thinking about prior to starting to swing or not to swing.

At the point which the pitcher has started their wind up the second last thing a hitter should do is to focus on the release point. Now remember a person can only focus for 1.75 sec (analysis by scientic experiment) before we start to lose focus. The ball is released and the identifiction of the spin of the ball (in order to reconize movement) is the final piece of the hitting puzzle. From that point on the batter must rely on trained muscle responses to respond to previously imputed stimuli in order to make a decision to perform the act of swinging the bat. There is not enough time to conciously think about swinging it must be a learned response.

The important thing to remember that after the final stimuli is imputted into the system you only have .4 of a sec to get your bat into the hitting zone. This is the time that 1000's of swings before have trained our muscles to react and perform the proper or improper swing in order to achieve a goal that only happens successfully 1 out of 10 to 15 times. Remember that we swing more then we have at bats so the .333 hitter is is attempting way more then his or her at bats indicate. Now of course there are small successes along the way, fouling off a good pitch or taking a walk because you did not swing but we are measured by batting average more then any other stat in the hitting book.

As an appendum to this, over thinking, over analysing and over adjusting one's own swing may be the most common mistake that hitters make. If you constantly change you muscle memory you lose the advantage of taking 1000's of swings in practice. There are many different swing types, stances and styles in the game. Are Sosa, Bonds, Gywnn, Rose, Williams, Cobb or Maris all successful? Yes. Did they all have the same swing? No. A lot of different swing types and styles can be successful if muscle memory, mental preparation and personality are each individually balanced for optimum performance.


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