Re: Re: Re: Developing Rotation Around a Stationary Axis

Posted by: Gary G (grubbsg@iquest.net) on Tue May 30 23:46:00 2000

>>>Hi. I am a 14 year old junior league baseball player. I found this site and thought it was very interesting. I have tried and tried to develop that sweet, seemingly effortless stroke, which as I have learned from this site, is the product of a swing with torque and rotation around a stationary axis. But, I have had little success. I am a switch hitter, and have found it difficult to maximize my batspeed through torque and rotation from both sides of the plate. After months of practice and hard work, it still doesn't seem natural, and I know I'm not doing it right! Does anyone have any suggestions, drills, etc., which will help me with this problem?
> > Thanks, <<<
> >
> > Hi Joe
> >
> > I extend my hat to those who spend hours (and maybe tears) trying to convert their swing to rotational mechanics. So here are a couple of thoughts that may help your progress. --- Rotation around a stationary axis does develop the energy for the swing. But that energy can not be converted into bat speed with the linear mechanics most batters use (trusting the top hand or knob of the bat in a straight line toward the pitcher). To transfer the energy you developed in your rotating body into bat speed you must also develop a circular hand-path and apply torque earlier in the swing.
> >
> > The number ONE point to remember in developing an angular hand-path is: You must not initiate your swing by thrusting out with the top hand – this straightens out the hand-path. The top hand must stay back (or be pulling back) as you initiate your swing. By rotating back (inward turn) to a good launch position and allowing the rotation of your shoulders accelerate your hands, you will begin to develop a circular path. If your hand-path is correct you will be generating early bat speed without applying torque.
> >
> > As I mentioned earlier the role of the top hand must change with rotational mechanics. During the first part of the swing the top hand should stay near the armpit and serves more as a pivot point for the bottom hand to pull around. Torque is applied as the bottom hand pulls on the knob end of the bat.
> >
> > Joe it is important that you let your arm muscles relax for the rotational swing. All of the burden for accelerating the bat cannot and will not fall on the arms. The lead arm lays across the chest and the larger muscles of the legs and body will now be carrying most of the load. --- Don’t let the generation of torque be the focus point of your mechanics. First, think of a good loose circular hand-path and add just a little torque to it – then a little more. No sudden movements or jerks – Smooth steady acceleration.
> >
> > Even though some may criticize the “complexity” of a rotational swing, in reality Joe it is not complex once you begin to feel it, and it is worth the time and effort because the rotational swing is the only swing that can produce “triple crown” like numbers.
> >
> > Jack Mankin
> >
> > : Jack is exactly right in the way he explains it. I have put many hours into hitting off my tee and much of it was centered around a straight hand path, "keep the front shoulder in there" mechanics and purely relying on the accelerating the bat in a straight line and i never could really drive the ball, even when i though i knoew what the kinetic chain was, but when i read about producing torque earlier in the swing by use of the hands and getting good rotational kinetic chain. I couldnt wait to incorporate it into my swing and I have had the best batting practices of my life ever since i started practicing that technique off my tee. It took me a long time to really realize what exactly was going on in my swing. And i know far from everything stil, very far. As I start my rotation I just pull my hands in opposite directions.....top hand back,,,,,,but i cant stress enough that there must be both hand torque AND a good rotation and they have to be at the same time. If you just get hand torque or hand torque too far in advance of your rotation your really gonna cast the bat out and get no bat speed...like Jack said youll be swinging with your hands. I see the hand torque portion more as a way to manipulate the bat...so that your rotational forces of your body can accelerate it properly. When i rotate i usually think of just driving through the direction of the ball....and i know this sounds linear.... but Its just my mind set that i use for proper rotation and kinetic chain. If you practice you will also develop a mind set. It works for me. As jack said in order to do it right you really gotta just torque your hands a little bit but you have to stay relaxed and allow rotational energies to move through your body. The minute you tighten up the energies of the kinetic chain can no longer move through your connective tissue in your joints. So you lose power. Good luck i hope this helps.
> >

Jim,

Excellent analsis of the rotation-torque hitting approach. Thank you.

Gary

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