Drills to improve your core during the swing

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Rick Strickland: The balance board’s important in the drill because it helps us with learning what center of mass is. It definitely helps us with ground forces. It’s important that we move that center of mass forward. It’s also important that we learn to have the ability to hold the front shoulders back. One thing I’ve learned about the balance board more than anything else, we work on weight shift, but it also is a core stabilizer. In order to stand on this balance board, you have to activate your glutes and your core in order to stay on this board, especially when you’re swinging a bat.

Speaker 2: What’s the importance of the check sling drill?

Rick Strickland: The importance of the check sling drill is to accelerate and decelerate to make sure we’re using the proper muscle groups in order to execute this drill. A couple things I see happen with that drill is, you activate the core a lot more, you learn how to slow the barrel down, and then lastly if you don’t allow the hands to roll over. The kids tend to hit the ball more flush with the barrel of the bat when they don’t roll their hands over.

The top hand drill that we do will have an open palm top hand drill off the T. Where we’ll do all the sequencing with the hi[s and then the torso. At the last moment, as we start to turn with our body towards the pitcher, we will take the top hand, use it like a piston to drive the barrel in the direction of where we want to hit the ball.

Speaker 2: [inaudible 00:01:35] progression.

Rick Strickland: Jump turn drills are an exercise that we use to work on upper body lower body separation It’s also a conditioning drill of course, but it’s a coordination drill where the feel have to be turned in the opposite direction of where the torso is going. Which in effect, in this drill, it might be extreme to what the actual swing will look like, but it is getting those kids to understand what it means by getting your body to coordinate itself in two different directions.

Jump turn drill with the swing with the bat in the hand is definitely a progression where we do the same exercise. We’re working on hip shoulder separation, but we’re also including a third component which is swinging the bat. That bat normally will be, because the bodies position, will be pulled first with the torso or thorax, then the hands in most instances. I’ve seen some kids use their hands, but the ball is pushed on the ground.

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