The Key Differentiator Of A Great Swing (And How To Practice It To Perfection)
What if I told you there is one, easy-to-see, easy-to-feel trait that separates the great swings from the good ones. And that if you incorporate this one single trait into your swing, your swing will instantly become great. And the more you move toward this feeling, the better the results will get over time.
Too good to be true? It may seem that way. I imagine Steve Jobs's neighbors thought it was too good to be true when he started Apple Computers in his garage and talked about how big it was going to be. Not saying I'm Steve Jobs. But I am saying this is a big deal. I mean millions of dollars go into drafting players that are going to hit just two or three home runs per year than another player, and here's a way to increase home runs of every single player in your lineup by 50%, 70%, even 100%, with no decrease in consistency, no investment, no extra work required. A front office dream, and yet it remains a secret.
I'm talking about the straightening and compressing of the front arm at the start of the forward swing. This is at once the key thing that you look for when analyzing a hitter's ability, and also the key feeling for a hitter. Now I can look at one swing and determine a hitter's level of power and consistency. All I'm looking at is how much they straighten and compress the front arm at the start of the forward swing. It's the easiest way to quickly see how effective a swing is, because it happens at a point when the swing isn't going very fast, so you don't need video to see it. The opposite of this would be bending and pulling the front arm to start the swing - a trait that many well respected MLB swing coaches actually advocate! A disastrous move for your swing.
This straightening and compressing understanding of the great swing is a big discovery. In time, this will be known, but right now it isn't. Which makes a huge competitive advantage opportunity for you, and anyone you tell. While scouts and player development executives are focused on statistics and moneyball-type player analysis, and launch angle and "exit velo" (a term, I must admit, that drives me nuts), right under their noses is a way to turn their entire lineup, pitchers included, into legit home run threats. This understanding of the swing is the not-too-distant future of player development.
Every single player on every single lineup, regardless of size or athleticism, can get so much more out of every swing they take. This single feeling can turn someone who hits 20 home runs into someone who hits 40. It can turn someone who hits 40 home runs into someone who hits 60. I feel just like Jobs must have felt in 1976 in his garage - I have this understanding about the swing that can, and someday will, make a huge impact on baseball history. It will raise the level of every hitter, at all levels of baseball. But nobody knows about it, and when you tell them, most people just assume it's too good to be true, and don't pay it much attention. Strange.
The straightening and compressing of the front arm is an understanding about the swing that can be seen almost as a technology - an understanding of how to move the body in such a way to maximize both power and consistency at the same time. To basically be more efficient, to get more out of each swing. Kind of like the way we advanced from the Model T to the Tesla in the last 100 years.
In Swing Cheat Code, I show you my favorite drill for feeling this one separator of the greatest hitters. In this video, I show you my second favorite drill. The way the drill works is like this: You briefly pin down your front arm as you start the forward swing, and then let go as you approach contact. Just to give you the feeling of the stretch you need at the start of the forward swing. This drill is so awesome because it gives you an understanding of the way your swing should feel while simultaneously increasing your front arm's strength and flexibility in just the right way.
For most people, they don't even have the mobility in their front shoulder to compress against their chest very far. Unless these hitters intentionally work on it, their swing will remain back arm dominant. These are the hitters who usually have the most to gain from the new front arm dominant (FAD) swing. For them, this drill will quickly build a resilient and mobile front arm and quickly move them toward the right feeling for a drastic increase in power and consistency.
This drill will immediately give you the feeling of the greatest hitters. Pay attention to the difference in feeling. Close your eyes. If you're like most hitters who's swings are back arm dominant, this new swing feeling is a night and day difference. It's more like you are dragging and pulling the bat through the zone with the front arm instead of pushing or throwing with the back arm. "Dragging" has been coined as a bad word in hitting for many years. But without a doubt this is what the best hitters ever have done. But it only FEELS like dragging. What the barrel is actually doing, because of forward bend, is snapping shut through contact, which give your hits a hook bend to them - the signature sign that you are dealing with a master of mechanics at the plate - someone who has a great deal of forward bend through contact.