Hitting a Baseball
Baseball is the most complicated, complex sport of our time. You are told that you are good if you can hit a fastball traveling at speeds exceeding 70 MPH on a 1x1 inch sweet portion of your bat to a correct portion of the field to get a base-hit. With this being said, there is no one on the face of this earth who exceeded at baseball without practicing. Baseball hitting drills are essential if you want to find yourself or your son or daughter to gain success at the sport. But lucky for you baseball hitting drills are extremely easy to learn and easy to do by yourself. Before attempting the following drills you must understand that you will only get out of the drill as much as you are willing to put in. These are some amazing drills but if you go about the wrong way of doing them or do not focus, then they will be useless!
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Regardless of your budget there are several ways to get yourself or your team swinging like pros! I will discuss several of my most favorite drills that I have personally used to achieve ultimate success in baseball. No matter what hitting coach you go to or what 'expert' advise you hear, having success in hitting comes down to three things.
- Seeing the ball
- Level bat swing
- Turning the hips
I will construct three separate articles below on hitting drills that can help you master these qualities in your swing.
Seeing the ball Batting drills
1.Seeing the ball. You ask how important is seeing the ball in hitting a baseball? IT'S EVERYTHING. Hand-eye coordination is the key to hitting as well as it is to baseball. Some are born naturally gifted with this talent and some must develop it. Good news for you is that you can develop your Hand eye coordination no matter how old you are!
The baseball hitting drills to improve seeing the ball interesting enough do not involve baseball that much! These hitting drills can be done throughout your day all day long. Here is a list of silly, but effective, things you can do to improve your hand-eye coordination.
- Video Games- Yes parents you heard me, video games require a great deal of precision with your eyes and hands in order to accomplish the games goals. Playing a little bit of fast twitch motion video games a day can be really great for your athleticism and to improve your coordination.
- Ping Pong- There is no greater baseball hitting drill for hand eyed coordination than playing ping pong. Grab your wife or your best friend and go play a few games and focus on watching the paddle all the way till it hits the ball. If you can't find a partner push the table up against a wall and play with yourself!
- Juggling- Self explanatory.. If you can learn to juggle and practice it daily you will surely enough peak at your hand eyed coordination.
Okay, now for some hand eyed coordination batting drills holding a bat.
- Quick Toss- Grab about 5-6 baseballs and feed them as fast as you can to your player or to yourself. This drill is made to look really fast. The hitter should focus on two things. Firstly, he should focus on hitting the middle of the baseball to focus on squaring it up. Secondly, the hitter should be focused on bat speed. This drill will quicken up the hands and help you drive through the middle of the baseball.
- Behind Toss- This is when the hitter will receive balls coming from behind him where the umpire and catcher would usually be. This will FORCE the hitter to watch the ball hit the bat. Because if the hitter wont then he simply wont be hitting any baseballs. This is also a great batting drill to focus on hitting to the opposite field.
Seeing the ball is the most important part of hitting and that is why you should focus most of your baseball training to these silly drills. They will payoff and payoff well. On game-day your only swing thought when awaiting your pitch should be to 'see the ball' and nothing else. Now that you have some drills to get your bat to the ball lets talk about drills to help you drive the ball.
Level Bat Swing
Level Bat swing. If you have ever had an instructor that teaches you to chop down on the ball or to 'hit down on the ball' I will advise you to leave them. Having a swing that comes down on the ball is asking for a perfect moment of contact that will most likely not happen the further you get in baseball. Little League baseball might teach this because it gets the kids to hit down and force ground balls which will most likely get them on base. But as far as grooming a swing for a champion, the earlier you can teach it the better.
A level bat swing is a swing where the bat stays in the hitting zone for as long as possible. The reason this is so beneficial is because the better and faster the pitching gets, the more room you need for a little lenience. Keeping the bat on the hitting plane through the zone gives you a longer hitting zone than to swing down on the ball looking for a split moment point of contact.
There are not really designated drills for this aspect of the swing, but it can be practiced. As this is a huge change in a persons swing this must be practiced repeatedly until the correction is made. My advise for adding this to your swing is just to swing. Swing at the air, swing at balls on a tee, swing at live pitching, swing at soft toss, just swing. Make your own hitting drill just make sure that you start the bat through the zone as far back as possible while still keeping your hands inside and swing through the zone. Hit the middle of the ball not the top of it..
If you have any questions about this comment below!
Video Representation for the Hip-Turning Drill
Turning Your Hips
Turning your hips. This is an essential part of a swing because it fires your entire lower half through the ball. It is required to drive the ball as far as possible.
Not only is it required to drive the ball, but the failure to turn the hips can lead to many serious problems in your swing. If you swing the bat without turning your lower half and firing your hips your body will lean over and force you to hit under the ball. To prove how important firing your hips are.. grab a bat and swing it with your upper half than swing it with both. You WILL feel a difference.
Funny enough I have one main drill for this that will get the job done. As funny as it may look this drill will involve putting your bat behind your hips and grabbing the grip one on each side of your hips to where the barrel will be sticking out one side. Now you will literally be forced to swing the bat with your hips. Because to get the bat through the zone you will have to turn your hips completely towards the ball. So to do this drill just set up a tee about equal height with your hips and swing the bat as fast as you can with your hips to hit the ball. If you need to look what this drill looks like view the video to the right.
Well I hope you guys have enjoyed this article. I write it with the intensions of helping as many as I can. Feel free to ask questions or leave comments below!
Jay jr on May 14, 2013:
Does this work?
unknown on January 30, 2012:
i know almost all those drills but some could really help my swing
Bruce A. Beaudet from Canada on January 29, 2012:
When you say "level swing" do you mean level with the ground or level with the plane of the pitch?
With hip rotation it is important to keep in mind that the upper body must counter rotate(separation)to create torque. In the old days they called it a hitch. ;)
Jennifer Crowder from Shreveport,LA on August 08, 2010:
Wow, great hub on baseball hitting drills, you perfected this hub.. Thanks for the read and keep it up.. Thumbs up..