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The Fulcrum

Posted by: Andy Proctor (aproctor@ix.netcom.com) on Mon Feb 11 08:35:26 2002

Jack, et al:

We've been incorporating your rotational ideas into our 12u kids training program and recently have advanced to the point of defining where the fulcrum is when generating torque with the hands...and of course we're trying to figure out how to do it.

We understand bottom hand torque and have made the lead arm and wrist adjustment so the swing is initiated with shoulder rotation. What we are now fiddling with is the top hand. The only way we can see the top hand functioning is with the hand loose in the fingers so that the bat actually twists inside the hand. What we have done is have the kids start with their top hand thumb and index finger in an "O" with the other fingers cupped so that only the middle finger tip is in contact with the bat (ring and pinky are free). From this position they initiate the swing with a gentle rearward pressure applied to the bat by the top hand using the index finger of the bottom hand as the initial fulcrum. As the lead shoulder rotates and the hand path gets on plane, we have the kids "squeeze the O" with their top hand which shifts the fulcrum up several inches from the bottom hand index finger to a point on the "V" made by the thumb and index finger of the top hand...thus creating your oar-lock effect with the top hand. By squeezing the top hand fingers, we think we get additional leverage against the top hand "V". For example, if you hold a bat in your top hand with the bat resting on your shoulder and your elbow at your side straight down, and the handle flush in the "V" but fingers cupped open...you can make the bat jump up and down off your shoulder by squeezing your last three fingers (pinky, ring, and middle) open and shut. We think this demonstrates where the fulcrum is when the bottom hand is pulling the handle back as the lead shoulder rotates. We have them also trying to hit the ball much deeper in the zone or "over the top of the plate or inside the lead knee...which forces them to really get their hips and shoulders rotated around.

Anyway, this stuff is really hard to talk about, but I thought I'd throw our observations out for comment. Since a lot of discussion has to do with the hands...but we've been able to get results by focusing on what the fingers need to be doing...any thoughts?



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