The photo of Christian illustrates the incredible amount of bat speed he acquires by shifting his weight to his front foot, as he is rotating through the ball with his hands well inside the ball.
The camera has caught the image of the path of the bat moving toward the ball. A millisecond before this picture was taken, the rope and the bat head were pointed straight back toward the catcher and the “slack” was completely removed, making the Rope Bat™ as straight as a real bat. This is called “lag” and it is critical to achieve maximum bat speed. From this point, the hands move forward quickly because they are connected to the body and pulled as the body rotates as fast as possible, beginning with the hips. Connecting the hips, torso, shoulders, arms, and hands is the key to a good swing.
His forward movement has stopped as his weight goes into his firm front leg. His hands have briefly slowed to allow the barrel of the bat to “catch up”. The hitter has the feeling of literally “throwing” the barrel through the ball. Some coaches call this the “catapult” effect. Keeping his hands close to his body as he approaches the ball from the inside, maximizes centrifugal force. Imagine driving over a circular fly over on a freeway…as centrifugal force takes over, your speed increases, so you have to hit your brakes to slow down. When swinging a bat, however, we don’t want to hit the brakes. You do want to build as much centrifugal force and speed as possible.
Rotation & Momentum
To swing, at some point you have to turn, or rotate, period! You cannot rotate while you are moving forward, or linear …it’s impossible. Try it. Imagine a pitcher moving down the mound and gaining momentum, which is a straight line movement, and then trying to throw the ball without stopping by planting his lead front foot to rotate. Can’t be done. Hitting and pitching are much the same movements because they are both basically momentum and rotation. In each movement, rotation cannot begin until momentum stops. The connection between these two movements is critical. They go together.
In my opinion, you cannot have one without the another. Good swings must include both, although rotation makes up the majority of the movement.
The Importance of Torque
Torque is simply increasing power through spinning or rotation. If the lower and upper body rotation can be slightly separated, torque is increased. This is as important for pitching, as well as hitting. To increase power, as the hips or lower body begins the initial rotational movement for throwing and hitting , begin the upper body rotation just slightly later. This small separation adds velocity to a pitchers fastball and will also increase bat speed for the hitter, much like shifting from first gear to second.
Rope Bat™ On The Bernstein Principle
The Bernstein Principle originated from Nikolai Bernstein, a Soviet neurophysiologist in the early 20th century. He stated that, “the body will organize itself in accordance to the overall goal of the activity”. That is to say, if we know what we want to accomplish in an activity, such as hitting, the body will “figure it out” to get the job done.
Rope Bat™ Summary
With the Rope Bat™ Hitting System, anyone can learn to hit the ball hard. It isn’t about muscular strength, it’s about using your body efficiently. Even 4-year-old boys and girls can enjoy the feeling of hitting the ball with authority once they have gained the confidence and awareness of their body movements. They will become successful hitters now, and in the future.
For more help, remember Rope Bat™ owners are encouraged to submit a video of them using the product for a free assessment.