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Baseball Coaches Newsletter - Feb. 2008

Loading & Extension: Two Essentials of a Great Swing

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Loading & Extension: Two Essentials of a Great Swing
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The batter's stride should not be a part of the swing but rather it should be "pre-swing" movement. The front foot must be down and planted before the hands start forward.
 
Loading & Extension:
Two Essentials of a Great Swing

Definitons:
 
  • Loading - The process of getting the hands to the launch position and the hitter's weight back. The hitter does a slight movement with the stride foot being planted and the hands going back to the "launch position", this movement is called the "seperation" process.
  • Loaded Position - The most often preferred location of the hands is at the top of the batter's strike zone and over the batter's back foot. The bat should be at a 45 degree angle.
  • Extension - Extension is the mid-phase of the swing when contact with the ball is being maintained as long as possible. The batter makes contact and drives the hands forward on a level plane with a "palm up - palm down" hands position. We want the batter to extend contact with the ball as long as possible to generate power and to hit more linedrives. The batter's hands and wrist will naturally roll over when the batter's hand get the maximum extension possible.

Coaching Tips and Points: by Nick Dixon
 
"Hitting with Power" is one of the key's to winning at every level from T-Ball to the MLB. Two essentials to hitting with power are "Loading" and "Extension".
 
A player's swing must be compact, short, and take the bat "to and through" the ball. We often tell our players "Short to - Long Through" meaning we want the bat to get on the ball's plane ASAP "As Short as Possible"  and the bat to be driven through the ball ALAP "As Long as Possible".
 
The batter's stride should not be a part of the swing but rather it should be "pre-swing" movement. The front foot must be down and planted before the hands start forward.
 
Check out these video clips that give valuable coaching tips:
 

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