Improve Your Baseball Hitting Skills With Ancient Okinawa Martial Arts “Secrets!”

June 17, 2009

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Doug Allan Dammeier asked:

The information you’re about to read about is not available anywhere else in the world. No one has ever combined baseball skills with martial arts training and developed a “system” integrating the two disciplines. Feel free to search the world via the internet trying to find this combination. You won’t find anything because it’s never been done before.

I started playing baseball at age 8. As a talented player in my teens and twenties I played on traveling baseball all-star teams while also competing in, and winning, martial arts tournaments. During this time I developed a unique and innovative “system” that integrated my martial arts skills INTO my baseball skills. The results were amazing!

I’m now 59 years of age and I still play over 80 games per year on an elite traveling senior softball team in the Pacific Northwest, U.S.A. All players are over 50 years old. I have worked on perfecting this unique “system” for over 40 years and it’s still very effective.

I’m going to give you a glimpse into these “secret” techniques to help you improve your baseball hitting. You will be required to “think outside the box” with these techniques, but they have been proven to work.

Let’s try a simple technique…

Pick up your bat right now and get into your normal batting stance. Take a few swings using the normal physical movements you are used to. Take mental note of your body position in your stance. Now before you swing again consciously rotate your hips just 2 inches backwards, away from the pitcher. Think about this 2 inches in your mind as you’re in your stance. Feel these 2 inches. Now take your normal swing with this extra 2 inches of hip rotation.

You will be able to “feel” the difference in your swing. This simple 2 inch change in your hip rotation has just added much more force to your normal hitting power. Your swing will feel much more “free.” This small 2 inch hip turn “frees” up your swing and adds more power when you make ball contact. It will take some time to adjust to this change and you must remember to consciously think about it each time you step to the plate. But once you become comfortable with this simple technique and it’s timing you will see a dramatic improvement in the power you generate with the bat. I guarantee it.

In Okinawa Shorei-Ryu martial arts all power punches are thrown beginning at the hips. The fist starts next to the hip, and just before the point of contact the hip is turned in perfect timing with the fist. This hip turn generates tremendous force through the arm, out the fist, and into the target. The more the hip is turned, the more power the punch generates. I learned to apply this force generated with the martial arts hip turn into my baseball hitting and the results were amazing after just a short time of practice. If you take the time to practice this you will see a marked difference in the power you generate with the bat in a short period of time.

Let’s take a look at another mental technique that can help you improve your hitting power…

Okinawa Shorei-Ryu teaches us how to mentally “draw” power up from the ground and utilize it physically. When we throw a punch we mentally imagine our feet are rooted to the ground like a tree. We mentally “see in our mind” the roots attached to our feet anchored deep into the ground below us. This mental technique gives us what we call “ground power.” A punch thrown utilizing this mental technique increases the actual force generated physically. We mentally draw massive power from the ground and this generates more physical force into our strikes. It can also generate more force into a baseball bat.

When in your batting stance mentally picture that your back foot (your push-off foot) has imaginary tree limbs attached to it and they are rooted deep into the ground. These tree roots are attached to the bottom of your foot. Think about how solid this “push-off” foot anchors your stance with these roots buried deep into the ground. Now when you begin your bat swing picture in your mind the massive power you are drawing up from the ground through these roots. This power is coming out of the ground, into your body, up through your arms and hands, and out into the bat. Picture it vividly in your mind. Work with the timing of your physical swing as you hold this picture in your mind. Practice it over and over. Once you get the physical timing tuned with the mental picture it will produce results for you.

This technique takes practice to learn. Any new skill, mental or physical, takes practice. But the benefits it produces are well worth the time spent to utilize it. This technique has been practiced by martial artists for centuries and has been proven to work. And it will produce results when hitting a baseball.

The next technique is simple, and can be learned in about 5 seconds. It is powerful and can be used immediately…

Okinawa Shorei-Ryu martial artists improve their balance by learning to “grab the ground with their toes” prior to making a move. Sounds crazy doesn’t it? But I’ll prove to you that it works.

Stand in your normal batting stance again. Your weight should be evenly distributed between the balls of your feet and your heels. Most players never actually think about how this weight distribution affects their balance. But without good balance you cannot generate any true power. Now simply curl your toes downward and mentally and physically “grab the ground” below you with your toes. This is a very simple technique but when you curl your toes downward you will instantly “feel” more balanced and powerful. It’s a subtle feeling, but it’s there and you can feel it. Try it. Don’t strain to “grab” the ground, just do it easily. You’ll feel the increase in balance immediately. And when you swing the bat with this simple technique you are swinging with more balance in your stance.

This is a technique that you can use immediately to add power to your hitting. Practice it.

I’d like to talk about the importance of relaxation when in the batter’s box. Being able to relax until just the “right time” will improve your hitting with this next technique.

Most batters are tense and rigid when standing in the batter’s box. The pressure is on to get a hit. But when you’re tense and rigid you cannot “transfer” and “release” your true power into the bat. When you swing and hit the ball in this state your power is “locked” inside you. You cannot “release” it properly with it’s full force. Muscular tension before your swing acts as a brake to powerful hitting.

When a martial artist is fighting an opponent he learns to stay relaxed during the confrontation. By staying relaxed his physical movements are free and flowing and controlled. He has speed and quickness in a relaxed state. Muscular tension slows down all physical movements and restricts quickness and speed. But when he strikes he tenses all muscles in his body and delivers the blow with a “focused burst” of his total energy into the target upon contact. This relaxed state works extremely well when hitting a baseball also.

While in your batting stance you should be totally relaxed, not tense and rigid. When the pitcher winds up and delivers the pitch and you decide to commit to swing at it you instantly tense all muscles and mentally “shoot” your energy out of the bat and into the ball at the point of impact. You mentally and physically “explode” all of your “focused energy” into the bat. By being relaxed before this point you are allowing all your power to “flow” into the bat in this “focused burst” of intense energy. By not being tense and rigid before this point you don’t “lock” your power inside you. When you’re relaxed up to this “explosive burst” you “release” all your power at the precise time of it’s total intensity. Your true power is transferred into the ball through the bat and a focused concentration of energy and power is produced.

This may sound complicated to you at this point, but with dedicated practice it becomes very easy to master this technique. It’s a matter of timing the tension of the muscles with the exhalation of your breath at the precise moment you touch the ball with your bat. And once you become proficient at it you will quickly move up several levels in your hitting skills. For the first time in your life you begin to think of relaxing at the plate and “explosive bursts,” and “releasing” your power, and “focused energy.” You’re no longer tense and rigid with your power “locked” inside you. Once you’re exposed to this new way of thinking it grows on you. It stays in your mind. You begin thinking of it more and more and you begin to improve your skills. You see it’s true power.

To end this sample of my “secret system” I would like to ask you a question. How good do you want to be, and how far are you willing to go to be the best you can be?

When I was young I was not the best player on my teams. But I became one of the best on just about every team I ever played on. And I did this by outworking the more talented players. In my free time after school and baseball practice I decided to “practice on my own time.” I would go into the garage at our house and simply swing my bat 200 times each night by myself. I did this 7 days a week It only took 20-30 minutes. In one week I had swung my bat at least 1,400 times. In one month I had swung my bat over 5,600 times more than the rest of the players on my team. My hitting improved dramatically. Doing this can make a huge difference in your hitting?

Practicing “on your own time” will make a huge difference in your skill level. Are you one of the few willing to put in this extra work? Most players won’t do this. But if you want to move up to the next level and you commit to doing this you will reap tremendous rewards. I guarantee it!

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