Keeping the weight in

Had a chance to work with a couple of girls today on their hitting. It was two sisters, one of whom will be playing for me for the first time this summer. She played on my daughter’s HS team last season so I’ve been wanting to work with her anyway. Today serendipity prevailed — she was coming in as I was walking out of Grand Slam after teaching some pitching clinics. I watched her bat a round in the cage, then called her over.

I saw her doing what I see a lot of hitters do — swinging from the heels. She started from a good stance. But after that it was all hands. Her feet were locked in place as though Guido and the boys had cast them in concrete before throwing her in the river. This, in turn, caused a host of other problems. Her first move was also a problem — she’d drop her hands straight down, putting her in a weak position.

Being a natural busybody and serial coach, I called her over and asked if she’d like some help. She said yes, and so we went off to the side to get to work. I had her work on starting her hips rotating before moving her hands, and leading the hips before the upper body. We worked on keeping the hands tied to the back shoulder at the start of the swing, and keeping the bat on an angle instead of dropping it down parallel to the ground. Finally, we worked on trying to keep her weight/balance in toward the plate instead of winding up falling away from it.

It was just one impromptu “lesson” but it seemed to help. She started making more contact, and hitting through the ball better. Of course, now the key will be if she keeps it going. I hope she does, because it will help our offense in the summer as well as helping her individually.

Incidentally, her sister was doing many of the same things so I worked with her while I was there as well. Her sister seemed to get it as well. She’s playing travel ball for the first time this summer too, with our 14U team, so hopefully she’ll stick with it as well.

It’s amazing what you can do with a half hour and a willing student.

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About Ken Krause

Ken Krause has been coaching girls fastpitch softball for nearly 20 years. Some may know him as a contributing columnist to Softball Magazine, where he writes Krause's Korner -- a regular column sponsored by Louisville Slugger. Ken is also the Administrator of the Discuss Fastpitch Forum, the most popular fastpitch discussion forum on the Internet. He is currently a Three Star Master Coach with the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA), and is certified by both the Amateur Softball Association (ASA) and American Sports Education Program (ASEP). Ken is a private instructor specializing in pitchers, hitters, and catchers. He teaches at North Shore Baseball Academy in Libertyville, IL and Pro-Player Consultants in McHenry, IL.

Posted on February 19, 2007, in Hitting. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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