Drill to help fastpitch hitters who drop their hands
A couple of weeks ago I was working with a 12U player named Carly who was having some issues with her hands dropping. The action of dropping her hands created somewhat of a looping swing.
The problem was she couldn’t feel it. So once again I brought out my trusty swim noodle. This time I placed it behind her, in an area I didn’t want the bat head to go. Her objective was to swing the bat without hitting the noodle.
At first, of course, she did hit the noodle. Here’s a slow motion video (taken later in the session) showing a “before” swing. (Notice the guilty grin after she hits the noodle.
After working on it for a bit we tried it again. Here’s the “after” swing, with Carly now taking the head of the bat on a more direct line to the ball instead of looping.
It’s a subtle difference but an important one. With this bat path she is now set up better to hit the ball more effectively.
By the way, back in the day I used to hold a bat behind the hitter, who would use an old bat in order not to damage her good one. But that became a bit intimidating. The noodle works much better, and allows the hitter to use her own bat.
As for Carly, we’re still early in her development as a hitter, but the noodle drill has been effective in helping her get rid of the looping swing. If you know a hitter who is having this dropping the hands issue, give it a try.
So what do you think? What drills or techniques do you use to address dropping the hands?