Improve Swing Quality with the Back Foot Box Drill

Written By: Eric Tyler

One Simple Drill That Will Improve Your Swing Quality

What Should the Back Foot Do in the Swing?

Watch any given Major League Baseball game and you are likely to find very different looking swings. The same goes if you watch a game with only the back foot of the hitter in mind. What should the back foot do in the swing?

Many hitters move in very different ways, yet some things about those moves are constant. How the back foot moves in hitters swings is extremely important to the result of that swing.

One thing to keep an eye on with your hitter is how their back foot is moving. Is it moving at all or dragging forward? Is it sliding backward? Today we look at a drill that focuses' on a player moving their back foot correctly, in order to provide better direction in the swing.

The Back Foot Box Drill forces hitter to realize when they overrotate their back foot. When a hitter turns their foot too much during the rotation of their swing and allows the heel of their back foot to rotate past their toes before contact. If a hitters heel is closer to home plate than their toes, they have overrotated. This can cause poor direction and lead to hooked groundballs and cut pop-ups.

The direction in hitters swings is their ability to organize their rotation in the direction needed to hit each pitch (depending on location). By overrotating their back foot they are forcing their direction to be towards the pull side leaving them vulnerable to outside or offspeed pitches.

3 Ways The Back Foot Box Drill Improves Swing Quality

1) Provides Immediate Feedback Regarding Overrotation

Overrotation is tough to correct because it is tough for the hitter to feel. This drill provides immediate feedback to the hitter if they moved correctly. If the hitter's heel hits the boards or box, it moved too far and they overrotated.

2) Increased Understanding of Direction in the Swing

By not overrotating the back foot the hitter is able to extend and accelerate the bat towards the pitch path instead of just pull side. The heel getting around the toes causes the bat to accelerate too late and directionally to the pull side.

3) Activates Deceleration

A hitter is only able to rotate as fast as they can stop rotation. For a kinematic sequence to work properly, the hitter must be able to stop or decelerate their rotation to allow the bat to speed up around them. By not rolling over on their back foot, it forces the stopping or deceleration of the hips to allow for proper sequencing.

Still Not Convinced on the Back Foot?

Check out these MLB swings and watch their back foot.

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