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Re: How young is too young?

Posted by: Jim (jwelborn@lexcominc.net) on Fri Aug 3 21:27:33 2007

> I am just wondering how young is too young to start teaching these principles. I have a 6 yr old that, to me, has a natural and almost perfect swing. I have taken several videos of his swing on various days and have compared it to what you describe as the proper swing. I have picked up on a few things that he could work on but it is very hard to explain to a 6 year old. The biggest thing I see with his swing is driving with the hips or simply completing the rotation. His pre launch and swing is good but he stops driving his hips about half way through his swing. Any suggestions on how to teach this to a 6 yr old?

Six is a bit young. Don't teach him to be worried about his swing mechanics by getting on to him about little details. You are likely to confuse him.

With that said, a fun thing for him to do is make a "hip stick". Take a broom handle and tie it to the front of his hips with rope or shock cord in such a way that the stick is parallel to the ground and sticking out about two feet toward the catcher and not sticking out much toward the pitcher. It should be low across the front of his pelvis. Now have him hit a tennis ball off a tee with the hip stick by using hip rotation. Next, put a bat in his hands and have him hit the ball with the bat. He will instantly see what his hips are (or are not) doing. If his hips are strong, the hip stick will actually lead the bat slightly. If his hips are sluggish, the stick will lag behind the bat.

In a strong rotational swing, the hips do lead the upper body, although it is difficult to detect without slow motion video (or a hip stick).



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