The only good donut is the edible kind
The other day, one of our players showed up with a new addition to her bag — one of those round “donuts” that you slip onto your bat. She was all happy about it until she saw the look of horror on my face. I told her those things don’t help you in the on-deck circle. They actually hurt you.
While you may think they’re making your bat faster, they’re actually making it slower. At least that’s what I remembered some experts saying. Generally speaking, heavier things are helpful for building strength, but they have to be balanced by something lighter than normal for speed; swinging a heavier bat trains you to swing slower.
Afterwards, though, I thought I’d best check on my facts to be sure that was still the thinking. You never know — things change in the game all the time. So I did an Internet search, but the results were inconclusive. Then I went out to the good oldDiscuss Fastpitch Forum and there it was. Down in a thread on batting cages was an embedded YouTube video from FSN Sport Science that studied the effect of using a donut (or any heavy weight for that matter) on swinging a bat.
For those who don’t have time to view the full video right away, I’m happy to report that I was correct. Those donuts are bad for your swing. In the video segment they not only show that it makes you swing a little slower rather than faster, it actually activates your slow-twitch muscles.
The full video is worth a look. You’ll have to scroll down a bit to see it. I tried to find it on YouTube directly but it doesn’t appear to be posted anymore — or else I don’t know how to search there.
Either way, if you have one in your bag take it out. Use it for a doorstop or a paperweight if you must, but not to prepare to swing on-deck. It’s not doing what you think it is.