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Dominant Hand


Posted by: Major Dan (markj89@charter.net) on Wed Jul 30 08:53:39 2003


>>> Thank you for clarifying that this is a hitting forum. I can see that you have some knowledge of hitting. The analogy applies because the body performs simple functions in the same manner. The complexity of hitting is not in how you swing the bat, but in the hand/eye coordination it takes to actually make contact. Over analyzing human movement complicates the issue which is what has been done by many self-proclaimed hitting gurus. throwing in the manner describd requires identical mechanics to swing a bat, golf club, tennis racket and many other activities that involve the arms and hands. Don't over complicate it. The swing is simple. Making contact is the hard part. <<<
> >
> > Hi Dr. David Chambers
> >
> > I doubt that anyone would disagree that hand/eye coordination plays a major role in the baseball swing. But at the same time, the quality and consistency of the batter’s swing plane also has an enormous bearing on the batter’s ability to make solid contact. I have found that in most cases, when a good hitter goes into a batting slump, a definable change can be noted in his swing plane. Flaws in the swing plane are the result of flaws in the batter’s swing mechanics.
> >
> > As I pointed out above, variations in a batter’s swing mechanics has a great effect on a batters ability to make contact. And, I think you will find that gaining an understanding of what constitutes efficient or flawed mechanics is not as easy as you make it out to be.
> >
> > P.S. You stated “throwing in the manner describd requires identical mechanics to swing a bat, golf club, tennis racket and many other activities that involve the arms and hands.” Dr. Chambers, that sounds like an off-the-cuff statement, not something that has been thought through.
> >
> > Jack Mankin
>
> Mr. Mankin,
>
> Thank you for your response. I agree that the changes made by athletes is in their swing mechanics when they begin to struggle. In fact, I agree that the complexity of the swing as labeled by hitting instructors invalid. The human body does things naturally based upon the physically ability of the individual. Instructors try to take a natural movement and make changes to it without regard for the individuals strengths. My comment about the similarities of swinging a bat and throwing a ball are very well thought out and accurate. A right handed side arm throw (similar to skipping a rock across a pond) requires identical mechanics to a right handed batter. the hips begin to rotate, followed by the back elbow which pulls the hand and ball (or bat) and is more accurate. it also gives the athlete more control. Simple knowledge of neuromuscular recruitment and coordination contribute to our knowledge that we all have a side that is stronger and more coordinated than the other side. If this were not true the you, Mr. Mankin could throw a ball the same distance in any manner with either hand. We can look at video and see what ever we want to see.
>
> >
Dr. Dave-
you said:
"A right handed side arm throw (similar to skipping a rock across a pond) requires identical mechanics to a right handed batter. the hips begin to rotate, followed by the back elbow which pulls the hand and ball (or bat) and is more accurate. it also gives the athlete more control"

While the kinetic chain is in action in the swing, it is not used in exactly the same way for throwing and hitting. One of the major distinctions is that top hand arm is not whipped in hitting in the same way it is in throwing.
We are all familiar with images of a pitcher with their forearm behind their upper arm as they turn toward homeplate. The forearm then whips around as the upper arm internally rotates into the throw.

If you look carefully at MLB hitters, you will see that they use the top arm differently: they consistently keep the hand even with or ahead of the elbow instead of going to full external rotation. Careful analysis will show that some hitters have a minor amount of top hand lag that comes out well before contact, others have no lag at all. None lag the hand behind the elbow as you suggest.
If a hitter swung the bat in the same fashion as a sidearm rock skipping throw, the top hand would lag significantly behind the elbow resulting in both bat drag during the swing and wrist roll into contact. Neither of these is desirable in a swing.

If you want to see swings that resemble the rock skipping throw, go to a Little League game and watch the typical unschooled players. They swing just as you suggest. They however do not have quality swings. Nobody at the MLB level swings in the fashion you describe.

you also said:
"My comment about the similarities of swinging a bat and throwing a ball are very well thought out and accurate."

I suggest you think harder and more accurately in the future before presenting such horsehockey as some sort of absolute truth from a "Dr". What are you a "Dr." of, anyway? Certainly not biomechanics.


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