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Increase Exit Velocity without weighed bats

May 23, 2023

Exit Velocity and Bat Speed

This week on the podcast we're talking about exit velocity & bat speed with Bill Miller

Topics include: 

  • Weighted Bats 
  • Grip Strength 
  • Rotational power  

Movement Prep for Hitters

When warming up, hitters often fall short by simply picking up a bat and hitting off the tee or doing some light stretches.

However, not activating the proper muscles before hitting can leave potential untapped.

Just like pitchers warm up to throw, hitters need to warm up to optimize their explosive power.

In this newsletter, we explore the importance of movement prep for hitters and provide 4 effective exercises to enhance their performance at the plate.

The Power of Movement Prep:

Dr. Ismael Gallo  emphasizes the significance of muscle synergy activation for hitters. Without proper preparation, tension builds up, hindering quick and explosive movements as some muscles resist the intended actions.

To unlock explosive potential, it is crucial to focus on prepping muscle synergies rather than isolated muscles.

This concept mirrors the warm-up routines followed by pitchers, highlighting the need for hitters to adopt a similar approach.

Progressive MLB teams have recognized the value of movement prep for hitters, I've talked with several MLB hitting coaches who are utilizing a hitter's time in the hole and incorporating movement prep before they get out on the on deck circle.

By implementing movement prep exercises, hitters can unlock their full explosive potential and gain a competitive edge.

Pallof Holds:

An isometric core exercise, Pallof holds target the muscles involved in trunk rotation.

By developing core stiffness, these holds improve muscle efficiency and coordination.

Training the obliques, abdominals, lower back, and glutes, Pallof holds promote proper muscle activation for explosive hitting.

This is a great visual from Bill Miller, my guest on this week's podcast. Bill specializes in developing power in rotational athletes


Tips when coaching players performing Pallof holds:

Emphasize the purpose: Explain how this exercise targets the muscles involved in trunk rotation, developing core stiffness, and improving muscle efficiency for enhanced stability and control during rotational movements.

 Starting Position:

  1. Stand with side facing cable machine or anchored resistance band at chest height.

  2. Grab handle with both hands.

  3. Maintain stable position with slight knee bend.

  4. Extend both arms in front of your body

  5. Brace core and resist rotational force.

Cue alignment:

  • Neutral spine.

  • Engage core muscles.

  • Focus on stability throughout exercise

       4-6 seconds

       1-2 sets

Med Ball Throws 

 Given that hitting is a rotational movement, it is logical to include an explosive rotational exercise like med ball throws in the warm-up routine.

 The weight of the medicine ball is secondary; the focus is on generating explosive power from the core.


Tips to help players when performing med ball throws:

Emphasize the purpose: Explain how this exercise aims to develop explosive rotational power, which is essential for generating bat speed and power during hitting. Highlight how med ball throws improve the transfer of energy from the core to the upper body, ultimately enhancing hitting performance.

Starting position:

  1. Assume a side stance.

  2. Hold a medicine ball at chest height with both hands.

  3. Both hands towards the bottom of the ball (don’t want to push the ball)

  • Execution:

    • Rotate the torso explosively.

    • Extend the arms.

    • Release the ball in the desired direction.

  • Engage:

    • Engage the core muscles.

    • Use the lower body to generate power. 

 Half Kneel to Oblique Sit


Player will transition from half kneel to oblique sit position. The key to this movement prep exercise is for the player to hip hinge without reaching with front leg.


Player will use load (5-15 pounds) as need to improve feel and movement quality