Re: Front foot inward turn
>>> Hello, Jack. I have recently been considering the method used by some Major League players (two, actually--B.J. Upton and Albert Pujols) of turning your foot so that the heel is facing the pitcher in the launch. A good picture of this can be found here:
In doing this, it allows the toes of your feet to turn back the other way, and then almost directly facing the pitcher. This allows better clearing of the hips.
Would you advocate this, Jack? Do you see any advantage? As I mentioned before, it would allow the front foot to face the pitcher very effectively. <<<
Yes, I think the position shown promotes excellent lower-body mechanics for the rotational swing. I recommend being more on the ball of the foot than on the toe as shown, but the way he inward rotates his knee and closes the lead-foot is what we teach in our instructional video. --- Below is a post from the archives on this topic.
Note: Pujols is a good example of my cue, “Rotate the heel – Rotate the bat-head.” As he rotates his heel back toward the catcher, he is also rotating the bat-head back toward the catcher
Re: Front foot on toes
Posted by: Jack Mankin (MrBatspeed@aol.com on Tue Jan 29 12:03:32 2002
>>> Is it better to have your front foot on your toes or the ball of your foot. I've swung a bat doing this lately and when my feet are flat on the ground my swing is more level and a little more compact. When i swing with my front foot on the ball of my foot and stride, my hips turn more and my batspeed seems the littlest bit quicker. But also with this my swing isn't as level and compact, and i'm afriad of losing my balance a little. Which one would u reccomend. <<<
Jack Mankin's reply:
I would agree with Scott’s post. Upon completing the stride, most hitters land on the ball of the front foot. The heel then lowers to the ground to initiate hip rotation. I recommend to hitters with short soft strides that their toe lands in a more closed position. The foot then rotates to an open (45 degrees or greater) as the heel lowers. I find that the batter initiates better lead-leg action when rotating the heel as it lowers than when lowering it straight down.
Rotating the heel comes fairly natural to hitters using the no-stride approach. Many of these batters will cock the lead-knee inward as a timing or rhythm move in lieu of the stride. They then rotate (and extend) the lead-knee back toward the pitcher to initiate hip rotation. Obviously, the heel also rotates as it lowers. – Batters with longer strides or high knee lift usually land with the toe more open and the heel drops straighter down. Their toe-plant to heel-drop is more of a continuous (one-stage) action. – Short or no-stride can be more of a two-stage movement.
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