The Roles of the Back Hip and Knee in the Swing

Written By: Garrett Gordon

The Roles of the Back Hip and Knee in the Swing

How the Back Hip & Knee Generates Power

“Turn your hips to the ball” or “use your legs” is something every hitter has heard before when hitting.  But what does that actually mean?

  • When coaches blurt these phrases out it can often confuse the hitter if they don't know how to turn their hips the right way. 
  • This can cause them to spin out of control resulting in poor contact and zero power.
  • Learn how cueing the back hip and knee properly will help hitters day in and day out.  

What to Look For: Position at Contact 

The backside of the hitter has to be the main driver of the swing.  By loading properly and creating good hip hinge hitters will be able to set themselves up to drive the ball. 

But what happens when hitters get to a good position and still are not getting the most out of their swing?

Often times hitters spin the back hip and knee resulting in minimal force into the ball.  The video breakdown below will give you an insight into whether you are actually getting the most out of your swing.

3 Positive Outcomes from this Drill

Initial Start of the Swing

  • Cueing the back hip and knee firing first is vital for hitters. 
  • This move is something that has to be done in order to hit the ball consistently. 
  • Often times when hitters feel slow to the ball or rushed it’s because they are more upper body dominant. 
  • Performing this drill correctly will help hitters have to start their swing correctly.
  • Hard contact starts with being consistent with your back hip and knee starting your swing.

Force Direction

  • The goal in hitting obviously to deliver as much force as possible into the ball. 
  • When hitters don't feel like they are getting everything into the ball often times it's due to the hitter spinning their back hip and knee. 
  • This can happen more and more if coaches cue “turn your hips!” but when a hitter doesn't understand how this will lead to more miss-hits and confusion of what they actually have to do. 
  • Do this drill correctly and you will feel more power in your swing.

Posture

  • Another issue that many hitters have is not creating the right posture when they get to launch position and when they begin their swing. 
  • Having the ability to hip hinge and then transition into side bend is crucial to getting the most out of your swing.
  • Pay careful attention to how I performed this drill and you will get the most out of your swing.

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Josh Salwen

I like it. I’ll try in my practice tomorrow.