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  • Women's Softball Swing

    Do women's softball players use a rotational swing? Is it the norm being taught at the lower levels......middle school and high school levels etc....

  • #2
    Women's softball players have historically been taught linear. Many former linear coaches are still teaching linear, but are using 'rotational' phrases with it.

    Former UCLA coach using linear today.


    Mike Candrea, linear


    I have yet to see a fastpitch instructor teach rotational. Stick to baseball guys.
    Last edited by songtitle; 07-28-2012, 06:23 AM.
    efastball.com - hitting and pitching fact checker

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    • #3
      First, what is linear?

      It is not:
      - the stride (you can stride or not stride for either)
      - lunging (either type can lunge)

      It is:
      - pushing your hands at the ball immediately after toe touch (creates a downward - or late- 'chopping' swing path - see picture below)
      - extended back elbow at contact (on purpose for every pitch - they call it 'extend through the zone' and other such BS)

      Generally, fastpitch players squish the bug. However, this is seen as a fault by some instructors, even though their hitters still do it.

      Linear test - if you can use this with it pulled up next to you like this guy ... you are 100% pure linear


      BTW, I have seen some rotational hitters use this, but, if you look closely, you'll see they have pushed it away from them, or turned it sideways.

      Linear test #2 - if you can use the 2 Tee drill set up like this
      Last edited by songtitle; 07-28-2012, 06:39 AM.
      efastball.com - hitting and pitching fact checker

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      • #4
        rotational hitting is much bigger in softball than in baseball. a lot of college coaches in softball know about rotational hitting while almost no high level coach in baseball has ever heard about it (of course the best hitters are not actually linear but if you ask guys like pujols, Arod, Votto, hamilton, cabrera and so on they all say swing down, extension, straight line...)

        I guess softball is more open to changes since it doesn't have such a long tradition (at least at a high level).
        I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

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        • #5
          Whom in MLB actually has a linear swing?
          Last edited by trademark; 07-28-2012, 12:23 PM.
          Just a baseball layman trying to make sense of it all...

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          • #6
            Originally posted by songtitle View Post
            First, what is linear?

            It is not:
            - the stride (you can stride or not stride for either)
            - lunging (either type can lunge)

            It is:
            - pushing your hands at the ball immediately after toe touch (creates a downward - or late- 'chopping' swing path - see picture below)
            - extended back elbow at contact (on purpose for every pitch - they call it 'extend through the zone' and other such BS)

            Generally, fastpitch players squish the bug. However, this is seen as a fault by some instructors, even though their hitters still do it.

            Linear test - if you can use this with it pulled up next to you like this guy ... you are 100% pure linear


            BTW, I have seen some rotational hitters use this, but, if you look closely, you'll see they have pushed it away from them, or turned it sideways.

            Linear test #2 - if you can use the 2 Tee drill set up like this

            I have seen a former MLB player use the 2nd example in his lessons, BUT he sets the Tee away so that his students do not release their hands too soon.
            Last edited by Baseball gLove; 07-28-2012, 01:38 PM.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by LousivilleSlugger View Post
              Do women's softball players use a rotational swing? Is it the norm being taught at the lower levels......middle school and high school levels etc....
              As the girls have become bigger, stronger and quicker softball has gone rotational. Another reason to go rotational is the pitching distance being moved back three feet to forty-three feet at the high school, higher levels of travel, collegiate and international levels. There are less and less 1-0, 2-1 games now.

              When I started coaching 7/8 rec softball I didn't know the difference. I taught the girls how to hit rotationally. When my daughter got to college the coach considered making her a slapper given she hit left and was extremely fast. When the coach saw her drive the ball and she could bunt for hits the idea was forgotten. Caitlin Lowe of Texas/Team USA is the best slapper I've ever seen. She can run up and still drive the ball over the fence. She's 5'2", lefthanded and fast. The benefit of batting left and slapping is the hitter is going for what baseball calls a Baltimore chop. It's next to impossible to throw out a fast hitter out of the lefthanded box when executed properly.
              Last edited by tg643; 07-28-2012, 04:30 PM.

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              • #8
                I'm going to be pretty blunt about it. Most softball swings (and I'm talking about the large majority) are like JV baseball swings.

                The two exceptions I can think of are Bustos and Jen Yee from California.

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                • #9
                  See below.... I can see it working set off on an angle a bit...

                  ZZZZZ hitting-linear-swing.jpg
                  "He who dares to teach, must never cease to learn."
                  - John Cotton Dana (1856–1929) - Offered to many by L. Olson - Iowa (Teacher)
                  Please read Baseball Fever Policy and Forum FAQ before posting.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by pstein View Post
                    I'm going to be pretty blunt about it. Most softball swings (and I'm talking about the large majority) are like JV baseball swings.

                    The two exceptions I can think of are Bustos and Jen Yee from California.
                    How much Gold level softball have you watched? Do you know what Gold level is?

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by LousivilleSlugger View Post
                      Do women's softball players use a rotational swing? Is it the norm being taught at the lower levels......middle school and high school levels etc....
                      Softball has lagged behind in the past due to coaches teaching what they did and not keeping up with advances in the game. However, I'd say that that is changing rapidly although probably more at the travelball level. If you are talking middle school softball and a large percentage of high school softball, I'm not sure most coaches even use video for instruction. The collegiate level is using video more and more and they are gaining a perspective of various guru ideas and then picking out philosophies that they either believe in or creating their own philosophy. I am friends with some of the top hitting coaches in collegiate softball and they rank right up there with any of the experts.

                      Ironically, a couple of posters are quick to say that rotational and linear are more marketing terms than steadfast beliefs when it comes to baseball instruction but want to label softball instruction as linear. Elements of both are found in the swing and so, don't get lost in the linear and rotational argument. There is a very good softball program out of Kentucky that calls themselves Louisville Sluggers. Are you a part of that program?
                      Granny said Sonny stick to your guns if you believe in something no matter what. Because it's better to be hated for who you are than to be loved for who you're not.

                      I am an ex expert. I've done this long enough to know that those who think that they know it all, know nothing.

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                      • #12
                        Are the above people in the video's supposed to be hitting experts?
                        Where is the posture? I realize all except the top video are hitting off high tee's, but they look like tree's standing at the plate.
                        Just a baseball layman trying to make sense of it all...

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by tg643 View Post
                          How much Gold level softball have you watched? Do you know what Gold level is?
                          Yes, I know what Gold level is. I don't watch softball in general, except when the Women's College World Series is on.

                          I stand by my remarks. Hot bats and 200 foot fences are awfully helpful to those with mediocre mechanics. As I said, Bustos and Jen Yee from California are the two who readily come to mind as having a "high-level" swing.

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                          • #14
                            There is no agreed upon definitions of what linear or rotational mean. The way they are commonly used is "rotational instruction" is synonymous with "good instruction" and "linear instruction" with "bad instruction". That's why virtually all instructors say they teach rotational, none I'm aware of say they teach linear. Because of this I wouldn't get hung up on the terms.

                            Softball hitting instruction is really improving over where it was a decade ago. I'm seeing some really nice swings at the younger ages. Yes, there is some pretty bad instruction I've seen from softball hitting coaches, but I've some equally bad baseball hitting instructors. I'll agree that right now the college baseball hitters by and large have better swings than their softball counterparts, but it's definitely getting closer.
                            The outcome of our children is infinitely more important than the outcome of any game they will ever play

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by JJA View Post
                              There is no agreed upon definitions of what linear or rotational mean. The way they are commonly used is "rotational instruction" is synonymous with "good instruction" and "linear instruction" with "bad instruction". That's why virtually all instructors say they teach rotational, none I'm aware of say they teach linear. Because of this I wouldn't get hung up on the terms.

                              Softball hitting instruction is really improving over where it was a decade ago. I'm seeing some really nice swings at the younger ages. Yes, there is some pretty bad instruction I've seen from softball hitting coaches, but I've some equally bad baseball hitting instructors. I'll agree that right now the college baseball hitters by and large have better swings than their softball counterparts, but it's definitely getting closer.
                              I feel average pitch trajectory also has a lot to do with the differences we see.

                              I think we also did the calculations before and found that a 65MPH fastball in SB, takes about the same time to cross the plate as a 90 MPH at 60.5' - and the trajectories are very different.
                              "He who dares to teach, must never cease to learn."
                              - John Cotton Dana (1856–1929) - Offered to many by L. Olson - Iowa (Teacher)
                              Please read Baseball Fever Policy and Forum FAQ before posting.

                              Comment

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