One of the biggest problems of young batters is a tendency to lead with the hands. To the naked eye, it looks as if all the power in a baseball swing comes from the hands, but in reality, a baseball swing is very similar to a boxer’s hook – it all comes from the hips.
If you want to develop good batters, it’s important to constantly put them in baseball hitting drills where they can learn to develop a quality swing. And if you can teach players to rotate their whole body through the plate, with their hands lagging behind, all the power from their legs, hips, torso, and shoulders will transfer up to the hands, leading to an incredibly powerful swing of the bat.
Behind the Back Drill
The first drill I’ll put my batters through when I feel they’re a little bit too eager to lead with their hands is the behind the back drill. I put my batter in their regular batters stance, then take the bat out of their hands, and make them hold both ends of it behind their back.
Now I tell them to go through their normal swing, and as they stride, to turn inward, rotating hard. By putting the bat behind their backs around their hips, when they turn, they’ll instinctively use their back hand to help them turn harder and faster.
Have your player stand just under arm’s length from the fence. Now have them go through their normal swing pattern. By standing so close to the fence, they’re forced to keep their swing in tight, and rotate with their hips and torso, with their arms following behind.
Again, this is the key to developing a powerful swing – the power comes from the legs.
That’s why putting them through lots of baseball conditioning drills is important – building leg strength is vital for a powerful swing.