As every softball player knows, there is more to a good swing than just the movement of the bat. The loading and separation phases are crucial to getting power in your swing.
“A common misunderstanding within the swing is where the load and separation happen,” CJ Browder, a former collegiate softball player, says. “The athlete should strive to load their energy into their rear hip and glute with a slight closing in the hips.”
One way to practice this sequence is by using the crossover drill.
HOW TO PRACTICE THE CROSSOVER DRILL
To complete the crossover drill, you’ll need a batting tee and some tennis balls. Begin the drill with your normal setup off of the tee. To complete the drill:
- Cross your lead leg over your rear leg.
- Load your weight into your rear hip and glute.
- At this point your hips will be closed to the plate.
- When making your initial move forward, keep your hips closed until the lead foot strike.
- Once you have completed your lead foot strike, open your hips and keep your shoulders closed to the plate.
This movement will create a stretch in your core as well as a separation between the upper and lower halves of your body. This will force a sequential movement to transfer the energy to the barrel at contact.
“Not only will this work on load and separation during the swing, it will also work on timing,” Browder says.