Grip Energy for Baseball Hitters
Written on September 1, 2023 at 6:37 am, by Eric Cressey
Right now’s visitor publish comes from Scottsdale-based bodily therapist Dan Swinscoe. He’s been an incredible useful resource (and buddy) to me through the years, and this publish will present you but another excuse why that’s the case. Get pleasure from! – EC
Typically discovering what you’re searching for might be as shut because the hand in entrance of your face. If efficiency enhancement for baseball is what you’re searching for, preserve observing that hand – as a result of the energy of that hand is what we’re speaking about at the moment.
Two causes, one for every hand, to contemplate that palms are essential to your efficiency. First, they’re the one physique half that interacts with the bat and the ball. Secondly, our brains have extra floor space devoted to only the palms than every other physique half besides the lips.
With these two details in thoughts, it appears affordable to contemplate them as essential to baseball efficiency. Additionally, analysis is suggestive of grip energy being correlated to each throwing velocity and bat velocity. So, there’s really three causes for you.
If we consider you first as an individual earlier than a participant, there are different advantages that matter off the sector, too. Research present individuals with better grip energy have much less cardiovascular and different kinds of power illness. The truth is, it’s now being known as an “indispensable biomarker for older adults” and immediately correlated to longevity. The stronger the grip, it appears, the more healthy you’re.
Figuring out that grip energy is essential for our common well-being and for our efficiency inside the sport, it is smart to make sure grip energy will get some consideration with our coaching. However how? What’s the easiest way to enhance grip energy as a baseball participant? Is the grip work that naturally comes with lifting weights sufficient? Does it matter if I’m a pitcher or a place participant?
Many well-liked workout routines to enhance grip energy for baseball embody issues that isolate the palms: squeezing spring-loaded grippers, squeezing putty, or opening and shutting the hand in a bucket filled with rice. These workout routines will make the palms drained, however that’s all. As a result of they practice the hand in isolation – disconnected from the remainder of the physique – they’re restricted in how a lot profit they will present for on discipline efficiency.
No physique half works alone. In baseball, we frequently say “robust arm” when referring to a throw. In actually, it’s the entire physique that made the throw occur. If it was solely the arm, you’d throw simply as far sitting down as you do standing up, and everyone knows that isn’t true.
When swinging the bat, vitality comes from the bottom up. It’s transferred from our legs by the core, to our arms, and eventually to the bat. Any break or “leak” of vitality alongside that kinetic chain in the end limits the power to switch energy to the ball from the bat. We wish to be robust all through that total chain. Famend biomechanics researcher Dr. Stuart McGill refers to this as “grip athleticism.”
Different workout routines used for coaching baseball gamers like deadlifts, farmer carries, and kettlebell swings are significantly better. With these, your grip is an extension of the arm into the physique and legs, as an alternative of isolating it and coaching it alone. That is what you need. However even these nice workout routines even have limitations as they relate to baseball.
The limitation with these resides within the course of the resistance. In these workout routines the power you’re resisting tries to open the grasp alongside the road of the fingers, and the athlete tries to shut the grasp alongside that very same line. In case you’re a pitcher, that is simply tremendous. Nonetheless, for a hitter, that is incomplete as a result of when swinging a bat, there’s additionally power throughout the palm perpendicular to the finger line. When batting, my palms not solely should preserve my fingers closed, however they need to additionally resist the power perpendicular to my fingers that may open the hand and stop me from delivering power by the barrel. The power can be directed a method for the highest hand and the alternative approach for the underside hand.
It’s good to keep in mind that as a lot because the batter hits the ball with the bat, the ball additionally hits the batter with the bat. That is Newton’s third legislation. Each motion has an equal and reverse response. Thus, there’s a torque throughout the palm in a “thumb-pinky” orientation that must be addressed in our coaching however most standard grip workout routines miss it.
Squaring up a spherical ball with a spherical bat is difficult sufficient. We don’t desire a lack of grip energy to be the explanation for weak contact and decreased efficiency.
Place gamers really want workout routines that problem grip on this course, too. The workout routines talked about above don’t account for that. Under are pattern workout routines I prefer to problem this alternate angle of grip as wanted for batting.
1. Jet Wings – Named after the sharp tip on the finish of a jets wing, the thought right here is to take care of your plank as you stroll whereas your arm is out to your facet. You’re employed to maintain the membership bell horizontal regardless of gravity desirous to twist it. I exploit units of 10-30 seconds.
2. Membership Bell Halos -That is one other standing plank. Maintain your physique and head nonetheless whilst you circle the membership bell round your head, each clockwise and counterclockwise. I sometimes use units of 5 in every course. You may range the stance additionally so as to add complexity to the problem.
3. Kettlebell Horn Curls – That is a lot tougher than it seems. I really like the problem to the hand, forearm and elbow. I program this like common curls. They’re simply tougher.
4. Single Arm Hangs – The important thing to this drill is to let go together with one hand slowly, then attempt to cling on whereas your physique rotates every approach. As soon as the pure rotation stops, the rep is over. That is one other one that’s a lot tougher than it seems. Units are often 1-5 reps. Be sure to do that after swings, deadlifts, and many others., because it actually cooks the grip.
5. Membership Bell Chops – Use the highest or backside hand. The thought is that you simply resist the twist that comes with the chopping movement as we mimic bringing the bat towards the ball. We often do units of 5-10. If somebody can do 10 reps cleanly, it’s time for a heavier membership.
I’ve but to work with a participant attempting these workout routines for the primary time who didn’t instantly “really feel” the profit and wish to do them extra. I believe they’ll be a pleasant addition to your coaching in case you aren’t already utilizing them.
In regards to the Creator
Dan Swinscoe, MPT, CSCS is a bodily therapist and energy coach in Scottsdale, AZ with over 30 years expertise serving to athletes transfer, really feel and play higher. His clinic is Train2Win Rehab and Efficiency. (www.T2WClinic.com). His on-line assets will also be discovered at www.FixYourFunction.com.
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