What’s good OTA Nation?
If you’ve seen my videos lately, you know that I’ve been training some elite baseball players the last few off seasons.
These guys have seen great increases in all their numbers from their hitting velocity to their vertical jump to the amount of homers they hit.
This is due to an increase in their power output which has translated smoothly to their on the field performance.
Lots of coaches are afraid to work on raw power output when it comes to baseball players because they’re afraid they’ll get injured.
They’re more focused on fixing shoulder imbalances and working on mobility, which definitely has its place in offseason training.
However, when you train a player to increase their power output, you’ll see a smooth translation to their game.
The core is one of the most important components to work on with a baseball player.
This is because they need to translate energy through their torso as efficiently as possible.
Whether their hitting or throwing they’re translating power from their lower body to their upper body to create a powerful swing or throw.
What I want to do is increase the explosiveness in their torso so that they transfer energy more efficiently and are more effective on the field.
So today, I wanted to share my core training protocol for baseball players.
Let’s say I have a baseball player for three months.
During the first month, I’m focusing on bringing their spine back to a neutral position.
I’m doing the best I can to fix the structural imbalances they created during the season.
Imagine that a baseball player is a wash cloth.
During the season, as they throw and hit, their torso gets twisted and wrung out.
My goal in the first month is to unwring them, or untwist them.
So if they’re a right handed hitter, I’m doing every movement to the opposite side.
If I do want them to work both sides, I’ll do double the reps on their weak side.
This helps, but won’t cure, the imbalances that they created during the season.
If I can align my players better, they’ll be able to produce more power and torque through their torso.
The second month is all about stabilization.
I’m going to use a lot of planks and other stabilization movements.
One that I use a lot is the cable anti-rotation.
You can see it at 3:12
Throughout the whole movement you’re statically contracting your core.
Then you’re going to pull the weight across your body without rotating and keeping your core tight throughout the whole movement.
Another that I commonly use during the second phase is a Pallof press.
You can see it at 3:38
We’re going to use a resistance band for this exercise.
You’re going to bring your feet right under your shoulders.
This puts more stress on the core as opposed to a wider stance that creates a more stable base.
Pull the band straight to the middle of your chest, then press out.
It’s important that you’re staying tall and not leaning to the left or right and your spine should be vertical.
The press out forces you to increase the stabilization in your core and makes it a great addition to the second phase.
The third month will be peak phase.
In the third month I’m going to prepare them to translate all the newly acquired power and stabilization onto the baseball field.
During this month, I love to use wood chops as well as ballistic movements such as a medicine ball side toss variation that is more related to baseball.
On all of these exercises I’m trying to produce as much force as I possibly can in order to get the most bang for my buck.
I’ve found this protocol to be very effective with my baseball players.
I don’t have much time with them in the offseason, but with this protocol, I find that it’s very effective and efficient when I do have time with them.
Give this a shot and let me know your thoughts in the comments .