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Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Youth Baseball Coaching - 8 Elements of a Super Baseball Swing

Youth Baseball Coaching - 8 Elements of a Super Baseball Swing
By Nick Dixon

The perfect baseball swing is a thing of beauty. There are few movements and actions in sports that are practice more often than the baseball swing. Players take thousands and thousands of practice swing during a season. The key to game swing quality is practice swing quality. There are certain basic rules that every batter should remember when taking a swing in practice and games.

Those rules are:

Make your stance wide to keep a short stride. A shorter stride is desirable because it allows the batter to execute the swing with little or no striding action. This allows the batter to keep the weight and hands back longer thus eliminating the possibility of being fooled on off-speed pitches.
Keep your hands close and stay inside the ball. The batter must learn to execute a swing that keeps the hands, wrist, and bat inside the ball.
Keep the head in and the front shoulder down. This body position will prevent the batter from pulling of the ball or popping up.
Move the lead foot...keep the back foot still. The lead leg should be planted and kept stiff. The back leg and hip will turn and rotate during the swing. The proper swing action is a "turning of the hips" and not a lunging action toward the ball.
Pivot of the back leg. The back toe should finish "on the toe-shoe laces to the pitcher". The turning in of the back toe and knee serves to free the hips allowing a smooth powerful swing with the hips generating power.
See the ball go flat. The concept is that the batter should see the bat distort one side of the ball upon impact. The barrel of the bat will "flatten" one of the ball when the ball is hit. The batter should keep the eyes and head on the ball so well that he can see the ball go flat.
Get extension through the ball. The batter should drive the hands through the ball using a quick wrist action to get maximum bat speed generation. The path of the bat should be similar to the path of a "landing plane". The path should be downward and through the ball to maintain bat to ball contact for as long as possible.
Finish long and smooth. The hands, wrist and arms should be driven through the ball in a long smooth path. The finishing position of the hands and bat should be one that has allowed the bat to go long through a long arch. A quick or abrupt stopping of the swing will alter the path and timing of the bat.

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Hello Baseball Friend,
I welcome any comments or suggestions. If you have a question or a topic that you would like to read about, please leave a comment and I will try to address that topic as soon as I can. Good luck in the coming season!
Have a great day, Nick