Baseball Hitting & Bunting Instruction
The video clips below walk you through fundamentally sound hitting and bunting technique. By breaking the process down, you can learn and focus on those individual parts as coaches and teach your kids proper form. Your kids will benefit far greater from you taking the time to teach and perfect each part of the process through drills than if you simply throw batting practice without breaking it down.
Set up three stations during batting practice and practice in this order:
1) Work on each individual part as shown below with a bat and no tee or pitching – focus only on perfecting each part of the swing process
2) Work on the same parts slowly hitting off a tee, gradually making the swing more fluid, but focus on proper technique before allowing hard and quick swings
3) Practice the technique with pitches in the batting cage.
Biggest Hitting Mistakes
- Elbow Up – proper hitting technique requires the back elbow to be down and relaxed, not forced up. To have a sound swing, the back elbow needs to end up in tight close to the ribs, so it may as well start there, in a relaxed position.
- Dropping or Looping the Bat on the Swing – stand with your back foot within a few inches of the fence or net and swing. If the bat hits the fence or net, the swing is looping and the bat is dropping, which isn’t sound. The bat head needs to go straight to the hitting zone, with the hands leading the way.
- Shifting Too Much Weight to the Front Foot – power is provided when the weight is kept back, not up on the front foot. This is a common misconception and robs the hitter of power.
Bunting – This video shows sound bunting technique for all ages.
Hitting Technique broke down by parts:
How you hold the bat is very important to comfort, power, and accuracy. The correct hands placement allows for a smooth and powerful swing. This video shows good alignment. Re-aligning the knuckles can turn pop-ups into line drives and make the swing and follow through more comfortable
A relaxed, balanced, and comfortable stance sets the foundation for the entire setup and swing. This video discusses a simple, yet effective stance.
Holding the Bat:
Different than hands placement in relation to each hand, this video discusses where to hold the bat and place your hands on the bat.
Where to Hold the Hands:
Now that you have your grip and hands placement on the bat, this video discusses where to hold the bat in relation to the body while awaiting the pitch. Teaching back elbow up is bad form and should be avoided as it tires the shoulder and takes longer to reach the hitting position. A relaxed stance with elbows down and in is best.
This video discusses how to hold the head while awaiting the pitch for maximum visibility and sight.
Setting the Trigger:
Regardless of where the hands and bat start, they all end up in the same place for good hitters. The trigger is the cocking motion that prepares the hitter for the swing and also acts as a timing mechanism to the swing. The trigger is crucial to generating power.
Positioning the Front Foot:
After the trigger, the front foot settles in and prepares for the swing. This video discusses proper front foot placement and movement. Small movements are best and keeping the front foot closed is ideal – staying on the ball of the foot.
Timing is everything in hitting. This video discusses the importance of timing and how to set your timing in a swing.
There is a lot of power in the hips. Once the trigger is set and the front foot settles, the hips open and lead the hands through the zone to generate maximum power. This video goes through the timing of the hips in relation to the shoulders and hands. Explode the hips and keep the back elbow in tight.
We’ve all heard about “squash the bug”. This video discusses what the back foot should be doing through the swing. It simply allows the hips to rotate and should support most of your weight through the swing.
The Swing #1: The swing is the culmination of many steps leading up to that point of contact. This video discusses what happens when the hips lead the hands and the hands are kept inside the ball.
The Swing #2: This video takes another approach to teaching the full swing.
Hands Inside the Ball:
To have a compact, quick, and powerful swing, the hands must stay inside the ball. Keeping the back elbown in tight is key. This video discusses this concept.
Swing After Contact: This video discusses what to do once contact is made.
Staying Back on the Swing:
Keeping your weight back on your back leg is key to generating power. Lunging forward and ending up with too much weight on your front foot decreases power, so this video discusses the importance of staying back and how to work on it.
Hitting Outside Pitches:
This video specifically discusses how to hit pitches on the outer part of the plate.
Hitting Low & High Pitches:
This video discusses how to hit pitches that are in the lower and higher parts of the strike zone.
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