Every baseball player would love to hit for more power. That goes without saying. But not all of us have that natural power. So for players who want to improve the power in their swings, there are many things that they can do.
There are a lot of things that go into the actual mechanics of a baseball swing that can help the hitter create more power with the swing itself. We’ll cover some of the key fundamentals in this article.
In addition, the player can work on some specific exercises that will help them gain some added muscle strength and flexibility that will allow them to create important swing speed.
Let’s talk about those first.
Lower Body Strength
As with pitchers, a lot of a hitters power comes from their legs. If you look at some of the top home run hitters in the major leagues, most have a strong lower body base.
Exercises that can help with this would be squats, lunges and working with weights that focus on the leg muscles.
Core Muscle Strength
Although a good amount of a hitters power comes from the legs, the athlete’s core muscles are also important. Exercises that can increase strength in your abdominal muscles, obliques and the lower back are recommended. Adding core muscles to a strong lower body can definitely help a player’s ability to hit for more power.
Wrists and Forearms
Many would think that a player with large biceps would be a natural power hitter. But more power is actually generated from your wrists, hands and forearms. Strength in those areas can help stabilize your swing and improve your bat speed.
This could involve any exercise that can not only improve your body’s strength but also improve on your range of motion. Having a more flexible body can help players react more quickly at the plate and improve their speed and responsiveness.
Now let’s look at a few mechanical ways to improve your ability to hit for more power.
Smooth Weight Transfer
Players should work on a smooth transfer of weight from the back foot to the front as they stride towards the ball when swinging. Using your lower body and your legs and bringing your hips through will provide the torque required through impact with the ball.
Your momentum should be towards the ball and the pitcher and players should finish the swing on the toe of their back foot. Finishing with your back toe touching the ground will insure that your weight is fully on your front half giving you a firm front side.
Keep your Hands and Arms In
Your swing is primarily done with your wrists and hands so you want those close to the body to help with maximum swing speed. Extending your arms too far from your body can slow down swing speed and decrease your power.
The palm of the top hitting hand should stay pointing upward through the hitting zone. This will allow the hitter to drive through the ball and provide more power.
As long as your fundamentals are solid and you have built up your body strength in the right areas, you won’t need to overswing to add power. Sure you need swing speed to generate power but that can come from executing your fundamentals.
Much of the power in your swing is actually generated from the hips and wrists. Trying to muscle through the ball will tighten your muscles and prevent your wrists from coming through naturally. A natural smooth swing can be another key to a strong and solid contact.
Don’t Forget to Follow Through!
Not only will a proper swing follow through help you ensure the power and distance you need, but where you finish the swing can help you determine and identify possible flaws in the swing.
At finish, your hands should be high (somewhere around shoulder or neck high) which will ensure that your bat stayed through the hitting zone for as long as possible.