Top 7 Hitting Drills And Exercises
This article will be covering the top 10 hitting drills and exercises to help you hit harder, farther and more consistently. These are all hitting drills and exercises we use in the 5 Tool Prospect Manual. All exercises are the latest in sports science that have been proven by studies to enhance performance. Let’s begin!
7. Hitting Drills And Exercises – Overload/Underload Bats
Studies have shown overload/underload bats have increased swing velocity by up to 6-10%. They can be used in batting practice, tee work or dry swings. The variance in weight only needs to be +/- 12% of your in game bat weight. That means if you swing a standard 30 oz bat your overload would be 34 oz and your underload would be 27 oz. Keep in mind the batting practice group increased their swing velocity by 10% and the dry swing group increased by 6%.
6. Hitting Drills And Exercises – Separation And Hitters Medicine Ball Throw
These sport specific 2 LB med ball throws are designed to mimic the kinematic sequence and efficiently transfer energy from the ground up through the kinetic chain. Also, it allows you to build rotational power. These drills are huge for increasing your bodies ability to maximize the energy transfer into your swing to hit harder and farther!
5. Hitting Drills And Exercises – Full Body Ballistic Medicine Ball Routine
Not to be confused with the hitters throw, the med ball routine uses exercises that aren’t as sport specific, but are still beneficial to building a better more powerful hitter. For example, the squat to press, med ball scoop toss, overhead slams, granny toss etc. do not fully mimic a swing, but they allow you to use heavier med balls 6-12 LBS in a ballistic movement similar in power production to a swing.
4. Hitting Drills And Exercises – Plyometrics
Strength & conditioning coaches have long used plyometrics exercises to bridge the gap between speed & strength. As a stand alone training program plyometrics benefits are minimal, but when combined with heavy strength training the results are extremely beneficial to developing dynamic leg power. The development of leg power is huge for enhancing your hitting ability.
“As both maximal power and a combined weight + plyometric training program have been reported to be better at enhancing athletic performance than either traditional heavy resistance training or plyometric training alone.” (3)
3. Hitting Drills And Exercises – Heavy Resistance Training
Heavy resistance training has long been tabooed in baseball for fear of becoming too tight or bulky. Recently, those fears have started to be overcome and coaches/players are realizing the tremendous benefit heavy load training brings to an athletes on field performance. Countless studies have shown the benefit of heavy resistance training to athletic performance including jumping, running, throwing and hitting. Examples of these lifts are bench press, squats, deadlifts, overhead press etc.
“Power and strength of upper body exercises have been found to be important in generating bat swing speed. One study found bench press strength and power to be important.” (4)
2. Hitting Drills And Exercises – Power Clean Variations
Power clean variations (power clean, hang clean, clean pulls) are some of the best lifts to enhance dynamic athletic performance (jumping, running, throwing, hitting). If you want to build head to toe power through the kinetic chain and launch mammoth home runs these lifts need to be included in your training. There is no better lift to maximize your explosive strength and rate of force development. Both of which are huge for being a good hitter.
1. Hitting Drills And Exercises – Nutrition
Nutrition is not a drill or exercise, but it is often a huge limiting factor and arguably the most important piece to becoming a better hitter. Lean body mass and body composition have a huge correlation to offensive success in baseball. As such, it is equally important to your drills and exercises. If you are not feeding your body you are not giving your body the building blocks it needs to recover faster, build lean muscle mass and perform at your highest level.
“As such, nutritional interventions may be necessary to further augment resistance training adaptations. In particular, encouraging athletes to eat higher protein diets (1.8 – 2.2 g/kg) with more frequent protein feedings (4 – 5 feedings/day) in combination with an adequate energy intake is most likely to have the greatest contributions towards enhancing resistance training efforts.”
All of these hitting drills and exercises are extremely important to incorporate into your training. However, having a program that utilizes these hitting drills and exercises in a periodized year round training program (offseason, preseason, inseason) is the best way to maximize your performance enhancement. If you need a training program I highly recommend checking out the 5 Tool Prospect Manual. It is a year round training approach, based on the latest sports science, that has consistently pumped out athletes who can run faster, throw harder and hit farther! I highly suggest pairing that with the Topvelocity Nutrition Manual. These two manuals are a powerful combination to take your on field performance to an elite level. If you want a full evaluation, all of our programming and to train at our facility get down to a 2X Velocity Camp. If I can help in anyway guys please reach out to me on my social media: Twitter/Instagram @stevenguadagni. I hope this article brings you guys much value and success!
- Szymanski, David J., Coop DeRenne, and Frank J. Spaniol. “Contributing factors for increased bat swing velocity.” The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research 23.4 (2009): 1338-1352.
- Szymanski, David J., et al. “Effect of twelve weeks of medicine ball training on high school baseball players.” Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 21.3 (2007): 894.
- Lyttle, Andrew D., Greg J. Wilson, and Karl J. Ostrowski. “Enhancing performance: Maximal power versus combined weights and plyometrics training.” Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 10 (1996): 173-179.
- Ghelem, A., and O. Eriksrud. “Rotational power and hitting speed in baseball–a case study.”
- Chiu, Loren. “Powerlifting versus weightlifting for athletic performance.” Strength & Conditioning Journal 29.5 (2007): 55-56.
- Rossi, Fabrício Eduardo, et al. “The effects of a sports nutrition education intervention on nutritional status, sport nutrition knowledge, body composition, and performance during off season training in NCAA Division I baseball players.” Journal of sports science & medicine 16.1 (2017): 60.