The Framework

I am no different than anyone else in that I do have a set of principles that drive my framework. The framework is a little different than most as it incorporates a Biotensegrity full body approach to training. The Biotensegrity principle of the tensegrity (tensions and integrity) concept are that a structure is a tension – compression network with connectedness of all parts supporting discontinuous struts.

This definition in the human body looks like this: the myofascial is the continuous connectedness and the bones are the struts. Our bones are not in direct contact with one another, or shouldn’t be and thereby discontinuous. The bonds are suspended or appear to be floating supported by the connective tissue. The myofascial connective tissues are the web of tension and compression suspending the bones.

Players that develop early Biotensegrity tension and joint coupling compression allow themselves to organize the body and swing to absorb the ballistic impact of contact.

There a number of absolutes with the framework that all players regardless of age or skill must be able to attain. Although they are absolutes, each player may looks slightly different. This difference is more of body structure and style as every player’s body is different.

The absolutes are:

  • Athletic Balance Setup: A hitter creates a solid, dynamic balance stance that allows him/her to create joint pre-tension in an athletic and explosive manner.
  • Trailside Load: A hitter will shift or move or Coil weight to his/her back leg into the trail ankle, knee, pelvis, hip, and spine.
  • Launching & Unloading: Being on time with the pitched ball is the most important element to hitting. A player’s mechanics are extremely important, but being on time with the pitch is more important.
  • Point of Contact: At Point of Contact the hitter has transferred all the energy created through the barrel of the bat.
  • Finish: Finish Balance protects the body from harm and stress.

As with any framework there is a common theme and my theme is to develop an adjustable and explosive swing with the main elements of the swing broken down to:

  1. Kinematic Sequence Chain (KS Chain)
  2. Bat Path
  3. Timing
  4. Quickness
  5. Power
  6. Adjustability

To get you started thinking I believe:

  1. 90% of the Kinematic Sequence Chain (KS Chain) is established during setup and pre-pitch
  2. 80% of a hitters barrel acceleration comes from crunching the core, spine stiffness, and trail hip rotation
  3. Power is not a drill, but developed through strength training that includes Biotensegrity principles
  4. The best hitters are the most athletic hitters
  5. Clear the mind
    • Develop a clean mind mechanism to forget the last pitch (10 seconds)
  6. Contact Zone 15 inches wide – 8 inches deep

At setup the hitter must create tension and joint compression to create an early KS chain. The KS chain must pre-set before the trailside load completes. This pre-set allows the joints to work together so as the acceleration between each joint segment is allowed to stiffen and then pulsate energy to the next joint segment. In order for a player to maximize their KS Chain the player must consider:

  • Muscular Pulsars Equals Speed
  • Muscle Timing is a Relax and then Pulsation and then Relax moment in time
  • Speed of contraction
  • Hips and Trunk do 70% of the work in hitting
  • Rear leg balance
  • High forces and stresses accrue at Point of Contact
  • No twist remains in the spine at impact
  • Great hitters pulse with rapid muscle onset and offset

In addition, the hitter creates a Ground Reaction Force relationship and pre-sets the trailside that includes trailside joint loads:

  1. Ankle
    • Pronate or ride the rail (Stability)
    • Promotes continual Flow of Motion (Drifting)
  2. Knee
    • Knee Stays in Flexed Position that is established at Setup (Stability)
      • Potential issues include loose of Spine Stability, Timing, Vision, and Bat Path (Rollover)
    • Knee Stays Inside The Ankle (Stability)
    • Knee Cap Drifts towards pitcher (Drifting)
    • Driving (down and under CoM) trigger to launch the barrel (Launching)
  3. Femur
    • Internally Rotates (Force Production)
  4. Hip / Pelvis
    • Hip Externally Rotates / Pelvis Externally Rotates (Force Production)
    • Sets the Pivot Point (Launching Center of Mass Corner)
  5. Lumbar Quadratus Muscle
    • Slightly Side Bends (Stability)
  6. Spine
    • Side Bend (Stability)
    • Vision (Stability)
  7. Scapula / Shoulder
    • Pinches Towards Spine and Downward (Acceleration)
    • Trail shoulder to the ball (Timing)
  8. Elbow
    • Slight Concentric Muscle Contraction or Flex (Stability)
    • Sets Upper Body Frame (Stability)
  9. Wrist
    • Slight Concentric Muscle Contraction or Flex (Stability)
    • Sets Lag Position (Launching)
  10. Fingers
    • Bottom hand middle three fingers pressure (Stability)
    • Top hand middle three fingers pressure (Stability)

A goal is to increase the overall Force Production of the movement and swing pattern. Understanding that strengthening the muscles of the body increases the thickness of Tendons and Ligaments is part of the Power element of the hitter. When Tendons and Ligaments are thicker they are able to resist tension loads and protect the body. The formula to developing hitters comes down to:

  1. Develop athletes first and then hitters
  2. Increase the athletes ‘Elastic Potential Force’ by improving pre-tension joint positions and compression (Bio-Tensegrity)
  3. Control the athletes ‘Kinetic Energy’ (Rotational Acceleration) by training athletes with the use of instability movement patterns