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  • Originally posted by pattar View Post
    Here you go:

    Yes. This is the essence of the program for young hitters, and an even better way to end.

    Let me collect my thoughts.
    email kevin@hofhitting.com

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    • Age appropriate comps.

      Ran across this as I started looking for old material.

      This doesn't mean I think he is the next Yelich.
      This shows that I was ALWAYS COMPARING TO A WIDE VARIETY OF THE BEST.

      He compared very favorably here.
      I was quite happy with his swing here, and wasn't doing too much with it until, and if, he started slipping back in some areas.

      Ted Williams ended up getting most of his stuff wrong, but I tried to separate what he did while playing from what he taught.

      He said to "keep experimenting" ....
      We did...... always.
      Always comparing.... always learning as we accomplished some good imitations.

       
      email kevin@hofhitting.com

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      • I'm going to focus on answering Pattar, to the exclusion of everything else.
        email kevin@hofhitting.com

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        • So, the first question I asked when I investigated the hitting instruction community was, "regardless of it's ultimate importance and functional utilization
          in the swings of the greatest hitters.....is teaching bat speed, insisting on bat speed, creating isolated movements and "constraints" (usually contrivances) to
          focus intently on developing bat speed... healthy for a young hitter?"

          My definition of "healthy".... here is as a "life style", so to speak. As in "healthy for one's hitting career"

          MY answer was no. It was neither healthy, nor necessary.
          Bat speed requires suddenness.
          Hitting requires control.
          These two things are in direct conflict with each other in young people.
          Lots of 10 year old are quite capable of operating a car. I wouldn't want them increasing their competency on the road with me.
          Maybe let them ride mini bikes and go carts and move them up to cars and then Indy cars slowly over time.

          It was a hypothesis at the time, but easily studied over time to test as valid or not.

          So, if bat speed was not to be taught, BECAUSE IT WASN'T AGE APPROPRIATE, would we be losing ground on "the field"?
          Lots of things are unhealthy, yet necessary to achieve one's goals. (pitching and the UCL comes to mind)
          Do we need to allow recklessness and unfocused (and "unfocusable") movements, energy and momentum because that is simply the "vetting process".....
          ....you know Darwin and all that?

          I said no.

          So what IS age appropriate (something that doesn't over stress their competency), healthy and useful to teach young hitters?

          The answer for me was STRUCTURE.

          Yes, without hyperbole, a similar structure to a piano keyboard. We could learn AND COMPLY with the basic structure of something (piano) capable of yielding
          astonishing complexity at the hands of a seasoned expert, but do it in a measured fashion, over time.



          email kevin@hofhitting.com

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          • Structure vs bat speed.

            Believe it or not, the kid on top was focusing on bat speed as per his dad’s instruction.

            Before I became my rude, arrogant, narcissistic self I am today, I very humbly asked if he wanted my help. He cut me off mid sentence and said I didn’t know what I was talking about.

            This was 8u.
             
            Last edited by Kevin G; 07-11-2019, 01:55 PM.
            email kevin@hofhitting.com

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            • So here is where it all began.

              The middle is at 5 years old, before any lessons from a professional.
              Notice the similarities to the stance of the 16 year old on the right... very natural and relaxed.
              Compare that to the 7 year old on the left as he is getting professional instruction from an ex MLB player. Very contrived already, and the swing gets worse from there, as I’ll show later.
              I had to pull the plug on the 6-pack of lessons after three and eat the expense rather than continue.

              This is where I became determined to “get it right”...
              if in fact that was possible.

              email kevin@hofhitting.com

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              • In order to “get it right”, I would have to get the science/physics right.

                And the physics is pretty simple really. Most make it way harder than it is.

                The bat and ball “communicate” with each other during contact. Each receives information from the other and responds in accordance with that exchange of information as per the laws of physics.

                So in essence, all that matters is what happens and doesn’t happen during contact.

                Both the ball and bat are “carrying information” about their current state. I.e. velocity, direction etc.

                The hitter’s job is to create some good physics in the barrel and “deliver” it to the ball.

                We can create extremely robust physics in the barrel, but if we don’t have a reliable way to not only deliver that information, but “stay engaged” with the ball the maximum amount of time so as to make sure the ball “receives” all the information the barrel has we are not being efficient.

                I.e. Quality contact.
                And consistently applied quality contact.

                So that brings us to barrel path.
                That is the most important thing to work on with a youth hitter.
                And to create and deliver a consistent and appropriate barrel path we must have a solid structure with our anatomy.

                A youth hitter can develop that structure necessary to create and manage the proper barrel path.

                But it requires discipline and vigilance.

                I’ll give more details later.
                email kevin@hofhitting.com

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                • Originally posted by Kevin G View Post
                  So here is where it all began.

                  The middle is at 5 years old, before any lessons from a professional.
                  Notice the similarities to the stance of the 16 year old on the right... very natural and relaxed.
                  Compare that to the 7 year old on the left as he is getting professional instruction from an ex MLB player. Very contrived already, and the swing gets worse from there, as I’ll show later.
                  I had to pull the plug on the 6-pack of lessons after three and eat the expense rather than continue.

                  This is where I became determined to “get it right”...
                  if in fact that was possible.

                  This could be the most illustrative post/pic of the entire thread in getting across what I believe to be the essence of the entire thread.

                  While ever hitter's "natural" or level(s) of coordination are going to be different, trying to teach them something that's definitely "unnatural" to them is worse than just letting them figure it out on their own.

                  Kind of back to the years old "nature vs nurture" discussions we used to have. Where at least for myself, the better hitters were those that had leaned towards more "nature", but where the "nurture" they had dictated if they could reach their full "natural" potential.

                  I think the picture above, and Kevin Jr's current swing are perfect evidence of Kevin Sr. identifying that quickly, even if at the time the "NvN" thing might not have actually crossed his mind. IOWs, imagine what might have happened had KJ followed that "professional instruction", and what his swing might look like...had KS not seen the warning signs early, and has taken him on a completely different path.

                  I had a very similar epiphany with my son, and how/why I got into hitting instruction, but I'll not clutter KS's thread with it.
                  In memory of "Catchingcoach" - Dave Weaver: February 28, 1955 - June 17, 2011

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by mudvnine View Post
                    Kind of back to the years old "nature vs nurture" discussions we used to have. Where at least for myself, the better hitters were those that had leaned towards more "nature", but where the "nurture" they had dictated if they could reach their full "natural" potential.
                    It is certainly a tightrope a parent has to walk which is even more difficult now then it was when I was growing up due to all of the discussion boards, high speed video, gurus,etc which is available to parents now which was basically not around when I was a kid.

                    Comment


                    • Mud is exactly right.

                      The instruction Kev got was from the 1st minute ..,,
                      .... A CONTRIVANCE.

                      No one could have possibly known what was right and natural to suit Kevs optimal athletic developmental path.

                      If you force athletes into a box.. they may never get themselves out of it.

                      But I saw what looked like the most reasonable and common sense solution.

                      Focus on ball contact, and more specifically “ball striking”.

                      Let the athlete organize himself and use his subconscious “athletic recruitment” systems that will be UNIQUE TO HIM.

                      My job was only really to make sure he stayed on the right path.

                      And the only 2 things you need to insure proper common sense and natural progression is ball flight and 60 FPS video.

                      Most of the instruction I see is forced contrivance.

                      I’ll have more on how to use these two tools to monitor your hitter’s development.
                      email kevin@hofhitting.com

                      Comment


                      • So, what I brought to the developmental plan was comparative analytics.

                        I was a frustrated artist. Really, I didn’t consider myself a true artist because I was very rigid and mechanical in how I worked. I later realized while doing video comps of my son to big leaguers and comparing big leaguers to each other, that my drawings were nothing more than very intense comparative analytics. I would simply look at a picture and then start putting marks with a pencil on a blank page and start comparing back and forth. I would compare and use pencil marks until the two looked very comparable.

                        Here is an example. I saw a make up add in a magazine with this Christy Brinkley photo. This was a long time ago.

                        So I was (and still am) very frustrated when I see people make bad comparisons of swing video. It actually used to make me insane arguing over what a video was showing us.

                        I have often thought that anyone could do this if they just exercised enough patience and discipline. It’s a very mechanical process.
                        Last edited by Kevin G; 07-12-2019, 07:23 AM.
                        email kevin@hofhitting.com

                        Comment


                        • I see a lot of value in KG's comments arguing against the "controlled violence" idea. I know from BP with my son, when he's trying to kill the ball (and sometimes impress our female neighbor), he looks like a mess. My usual comment is to stop trying to kill the baby seal and chill out. He has much more success when he's relaxed and fooling around imitating various swings -Gallo, Yelich, etc. In those swings, he's more relaxed and focusing on taking a path to the ball and just letting the barrel "carry" through impact. Would certainly like to hear Kevin elaborate more on these parts of the swing.
                          Last edited by bluedawg; 07-12-2019, 01:13 PM. Reason: added baby seal

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                          • I found some clips illustrating three imortant things a young hitter can begin working on.

                            I used to call them the three imperatives.

                            These are are barrel path disciplines that you should be at least thinking about to some extent daily.

                            These imperatives will get you a long way.
                            They are all easily recognizable.
                             
                            email kevin@hofhitting.com

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                            • Your kid definitely has an excellent swing. You can be proud of what you achieved with him, definitely a top 3 swing that was posted here is the forum (probably top 2 together with ryan kirby).
                              I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by dominik View Post
                                Your kid definitely has an excellent swing. You can be proud of what you achieved with him, definitely a top 3 swing that was posted here is the forum (probably top 2 together with ryan kirby).
                                Thanks. We are blessed. If you look past my combativeness, I am trying to give back.
                                email kevin@hofhitting.com

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