By Coach Tim Wampler
In the past few years, baseball and softball swing mechanics has become scientifically studied. I strongly believe in a Simple Science Approach to hitting! The 6 Simple Step Approach to building a swing is easy to teach, understand and apply for all coaches and hitters at any age or level. Here they are, in order:
- Connection- Arm Slot
- Top Hand
Practiced on a consistent basis, these simple steps will reduce negative results (ex. Strikeouts, Pop Ups) and create positive results of line drive hitting and extra bases. The goal is to increase power and batting average!
For many coaches, the science of hitting is empowering! State-of-the-art equipment that produces measurements and analytics has given them valuable insights into their players’ movements. This helps them understand what works and what needs improvement as well as how to develop an effortless explosive swing.
For other coaches, the scientific revolution has made teaching the swing more confusing as they prefer an old-school approach. Sometimes these coaches are challenged to expand their knowledge of topics like launch angle, exit velocity, and the mechanics of the swing. These challenges can make one revisit old terms like “you’re dropping your shoulder” or “you’re stepping in the bucket.”
A couple of points are true for both groups: science is forcing coaches to re-think their existing beliefs about swing mechanics, and it is making the communication of the simple parts of the swing easier than it has ever been.
A short time ago, terms like launch angle, exit velocity, and loading were not in the language of most hitting coaches.
Today, they are used by coaches at every level of the game.
Obtaining analytics from technical devices such as the Hit Trax system and motion devices put on the end of the bat have provided important evidence of what is happening during the swing, significantly expanding the information for coaches.
As coaches we must be careful, too much technical data can lead to information overload for our hitters.
I strongly believe the “6 Simple Steps of Line Drive Hitting” video series is understandable for all ages 6 to 36. Once applied and practiced on a regular basis, the 6 Simple Steps will give all students the ability to make practice and game day adjustments, giving them the exact solutions to why they pop up, strikeout, and hit ground balls. Similar to Nutrition or Speed & Agility, practicing certain things on a consistent basis creates consistent results.
Thanks to high-tech cameras and other technical tools, we now know what causes most strikeouts, fly balls, and ground balls. Once that is explained and understood, we must build simple drills within a simple system to reduce the negative results and of course, increase the positive results! Hitters of all ages and levels that understand movements through the Six Simple Steps will have the confidence to enjoy the game to the fullest.