Hitting a baseball is one of the hardest things to master in the world of sports. Coaching a hitter is challenging as well, as it involves getting the batter to do several tricky movements with his body all at the same time in one fluid action. Maintaining the fundamentals of hitting is the only way to become a consistent hitter as you get older, so below are several tips for doing just that.
The stance is the foundation of every swing. An improper stance leads to erratic and inconsistent hitting. Your stance should include:
- Weight distribution over the balls of your feet
- Bent knees
- Level shoulders
- Hands 10-12 inches away from your back shoulder
Before swinging the bat, there are a few things that need to happen first.
- Tuck your front shoulder and chin in
- Pull your hands back
- Keep your eyes on the pitcher
- Hold the bat at a 45-degree angle
Having a consistent, smooth swing depends on having the proper grip. For the steadiest grip possible, you should line up the middle knuckles of both hands. Failing to maintain this stabilizing grip may cause the bat to jump around in your hands as your wrists turn over during the swing.
Your hip placement and the way they move is vital to how hard and how far you hit the ball. As you begin your swing, your hips should begin turning toward the catcher. Your hands should pull toward the back shoulder, which starts the torque that will drive your body through the rest of the swing.
As the swing progresses, your hips should rotate as well. Because they began their rotation toward the catcher in the beginning, they will move easily to drive you through the swing.
How big or small a stride you take is up to you. You should do what’s comfortable, keeping in mind that a shorter stride helps you maintain more control and speed over your movements.
As you begin to bring your hands forward in your swing, your striding leg (your front leg) should begin moving toward the pitcher.
Throughout the swing, it’s important that you keep your back elbow up and close to your body. Keep your head still in order to maintain the most control over the rest of your body. Your hands should move forward, keeping them still and level so the bat moves through the air on a level plane.
Hitting a baseball can be difficult if you don’t learn the proper mechanics of the activity. Learning and maintaining the baseball hitting basics ensures you meet the ball at exactly the right point to send it sailing as fast and as far as possible.