Skip to main content

Build Baseball Specific Power with These 3 Exercises

By February 20, 2017Athlete Training

In the sport of baseball, there is a lot going on in just one play, or even just one pitch: between the pitcher delivering the ball, the batter swinging, the baserunners taking off, or the fielders reacting to try and make a play on the ball.

There is a common denominator between all of those situations, and that is that they all involve an aspect of sudden and powerful lateral movement.

Baseball is a unique sport that requires athletes to be strong and efficient through lateral and rotational movement patterns, more than any other sport. This, it is very important that baseball players focus on developing these capacities – for maximum performance.

Here are 3 exercises to develop that baseball specific power:

#1 – Lateral Heidens.

  • Stand tall in an open space with your feet together.
  • Begin by lifting your left leg off the ground and proceed to use your right leg to jump laterally to your left as far as you can. Stick the landing quietly and athletically on your opposite (left) leg.
  • After performing the first jump, repeat going in the opposite direction (jump off your left, land on your right). Only jump as far as you can stick the landing safely on one leg, progress by jumping further as you feel more comfortable.
  • The lateral heiden is very similar to the actions that take place as baseball players push off the mound to throw a pitch, drive off their back foot as they swing, as well as when they take off from a base running stance. By training the movement by jumping laterally off of one leg we can develop more explosive and faster movements in game situations.

#2- Side Lunges.

  • Stand tall in an open space with your feet together.
  • Take a step out to one side and shoot your hips back as you bend your knee, making sure your knee does not move forward past your toe.
  • Push through the heel of your foot to quickly return back to your feet together position and repeat to the opposite side.
  • Perform sets of 8-12 on each side with a focus on speed back to the top of the lunge, & perform 3-4 sets in 1 training session.
  • Add weight in a goblet position as you feel more comfortable in the movement. By loading a single leg lateral exercise with resistance we can develop strength in the movements that we use on the baseball field.

#3 – Rotational Medicine Ball Throws.

  • Stand with your feet a little wider than shoulder width, about 3-4 feet away from a wall, and have the side of your body facing the wall.
  • Have your arms locked out with a medicine ball (4-8 lbs preferably) in your hands just below your waist.
  • Begin mimicking a swinging motion by first rocking to your back foot (loading) and then quickly turn in, pushing off of your back foot, transferring the weight forward while firing the ball into the wall. As you fire the ball into the wall, ensure you’re throwing underhand with locked out arms.
  • You want to be close enough to the wall that you can catch the ball off the rebound, but far enough away that it doesn’t come back and hit you in the face.
  • While swinging and throwing as your lower body applies force laterally into the ground your upper body must apply force into the ball transferring power from your lower body to your upper body through rotational power through your core. Rotational medicine ball exercises are the safest and best way to train this rotational power.

Take the explosive lateral power developed from the heidens, throw in the lateral strength we got from the side lunges, and then sprinkle on the rotational power gained from the medicine ball work and we have a very strong and prepared athlete!

Leave a Reply