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Re: Re: Re: firm front leg

Posted by: Dave (nytino20@aol.com) on Wed Sep 5 05:15:46 2007

> > >>> I am really having trouble getting my front leg firm in my swing. I notice that I really drift forward during my swing, causing my head to really move and my front leg to never lock out. What can I do to stop this gliding forward and firm up on my front leg? Thanks <<<
> >
> > Hi Tom
> >
> > Without seeing your swing, I would suspect the reason for not getting your lead-leg firm at contact is due to your relying to heavily on your back-side to swing the bat. Back-side dominate hitters leave the lead-shoulder static and rotate their back-shoulder around the posted front shoulder. This action can take the body forward and the lead-leg may never straighten (or firm up).
> >
> > To solve your problem, you will need to get your lead-side more involved in the swing which requires the lead-shoulder to rotate rearward at the rate the back-shoulder is rotating forward. This is what generates a stationary axis of rotation. In order to rotate the lead-hip and shoulder rearward around the axis is aided by the extension of the lead-leg to drive the lead-hip back toward the catcher.
> >
> > Practice striding to a well-flexed lead-leg at foot plant. Then, tell yourself that as you initiate your swing, you are going to use the extension of the leg to drive your lead-shoulder back toward the catcher at contact. You should find that your body does not tend to drift forward while you are concentrating on driving the lead-shoulder rearward.
> >
> > Jack Mankin
> Wow!! I am also having serious problems with my lead leg straightening. My leg is straightening but very late almost when my swing is over. I just stood up though and really just focused on a lot of flex in my lead knee and the catcher needing to see my lead shoulder (i know that sounds crazy but it works for me) and I really noticed my lead leg straighten automatically!! That's what I want. I want to see that my lead leg straightens automatically without me thinking anything about it. I want it to be a reaction of my body naturally. Ultimatley the only thing you should be concentrating on when everything is said and done is the ball and that's it. I think it's almost like learning how to ride a bike again. It's going to take a lot of time and effort because we didn't learn right the first time around. It's going to take a lot of time to correct the bad habits. I guess it's fair to say I shouldn't even put a bat in my hands for a while. I should just concentrate on the core movements for a while and make believe a bat is in my hands. Retrain myself. This isn't easy but it sure is interesting!!

I want to also add that I FINALLY saw my back foot getting off the ground by doing this last night. I have been studying my swing on tape against major league swings and it was really bothering me that my back foot was staying flat against the ground throughout the whole swing while SO many MLB hitters were getting the back foot at least to tippy toe. Well after just simply concentrating (without a bat in hand) on JUST the lead shoulder going back towards the catcher not only did my lead leg straighten automatically but sure enough my back side (foot) lifted off the ground. I know I am far from getting it because it's not even with a bat in hand but at least I can feel WHAT needs to be done to achieve the backside lifting off the ground and it IS all about the lead side. It's amazing how much I use the backside and don't even know it. I am 24 years old and every since I picked up a bat at probably age 5 in teeball I have been swinging with my back side. I think most people do because it just feels the most natural at a younger age. I think the key in learning this whole rotational mechanics is LEAD SIDE LEAD SIDE LEAD SIDE. Just concentrate on that and you will get the most important part down. I can't be anymore happy right now and I haven't even gotten this down. All I did was experiment it myself standing before my bed pulling the lead shoulder back towards the catcher. I can't thank you enough Jack.

Also I would like to point out that sometimes you see hitter's back foot rise off the ground and actually go towards the plate. For example in last night's Red Sox game Jacoby Ellsbury hit a HR off Roy Halladay to right field. His foot came off the ground and drifted towards home plate about 5-10 inches. It looked so off balance but it wasn't. It was simply the energy that he produced by using the lead side and pulling the ball for a HR that caused his back foot to also pull towards home plate. I think somehow there needs to be more drills that just concentrate on the lead side and that's it. I am trying to think of some but I think we need more lead side drills because this is the MAJOR KEY in learning rotational mechanics in my most honest opinion. Once again thank you so much Jack. I can't believe I finally have a feel for it. I really think that the hitter can understand what he/she needs to do but once he/she actually feels it and sees a result (like me seeing the back foot go up when it never did before) then they KNOW for sure. Ok now I am rambling like always. I just need to do A LOT of practice on this lead side becoming the more dominant action of my swing because @ 24 years old I have been swinging a bat for 19 years since age 5 the "wrong" way with the back side and never even knew it. The illusion of power threw everything off for SO long.


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