Fastpitch Rotational

Like no other time in history has the opportunity for female athletes ever been so great. With the advent of Title 9 mandated in the sports arena, female athletic programs have blossomed across the country. From youth select program starting at the ripe age of 10, some even younger, to the highly recognized USA National Teams, and professional teams that have emerged in basketball fastpitch and soccer.

In the area of fastpitch, a change has been taking place, an evolution of a game, especially hitting. More and more players, and coaches, are adopting a hitting technique that has been around for along time, a baseball approach to hitting. And with very good reason. The mechanics that the best players in the game are using is showing up in the girls game and making a significant impact.

If you are trying to hit a pitch that is coming in at about 68 mph, which is equivalent to a baseball traveling in the mid 90's, getting the barrel of the bat level to the incoming pitch is a critical element to good hitting fundamentals.

Rotational hitting mechanics should be taught to every hitter in the game. Let these young players experience the excitement of really hitting the ball and give them an opportunity to maximize their natural ability.

Weight Transfer

First of all, weight transfer is NOT a hitting technique, but rather an element of hitting, and a major one at that. Look at the back foot - players are either on the tip of their back foot, or the foot is completely off the ground at contact. This is what good weight transfer looks like and there has to be back to front motion in the swing.

Hips/Core

Turning to the ball with the hips leading the way is such a huge part of hitting and is an area that a majority of young players never fully develop. The power that is generated by the hips in a baseball swing is based on the principle of torque. The same way a golfer, boxer and tennis player and pitchers use their core muscles to turn, and so do the best hitters in the game.

Leveling

The greatest difference between a linear and rotational hitter is their approach to the ball. Leveling is the technique that gets the bat into the path of the ball and is irrefutable as to whether it is really happening, because it is. Dipping the back shoulder, dropping the barrel of the bat level to the ball and swinging up through the oncoming pitch. The process of the elbow working up and around the body is an essential part of leveling and the only way a player can ever get the barrel where it needs to be. The best hitters in the game get the bat level to the ball.

Ideal Impact

Ted Williams wrote that the ultimate contact point is made when the barrel of the bat and ball meet at a 90 degree angle. Another term that is used to describe ideal impact is hitting with your hands "inside" the ball. A couple things have to happen to make ideal impact; one, you have to let the ball travel deep enough into the hitting zone and two, your front elbow has to move up and around your body.

Take a stand and make the hitting experience for your players something to be proud of.

  • Dip in the back shoulder
  • Front elbow goes up
  • Swing is going up
  • Hands are inside the ball