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March 23, 2008 | By Alex Eisenberg

The Powerful Hip Rotation of Prince Fielder

Hip Rotation

This article is made in conjunction with the piece about a hitter's toe touch and foot plant. The importance of toe touch and foot plant relates to a hitter's timing and efficiency in their hip rotation.

Mechanics for both pitchers and hitters are interesting in how such subtle changes to a player's mechanics can drastically change the results a player is getting. Everything needs to be in sync and needs to be a natural act...mechanics need to come instinctively without thinking. The toe touch and foot plant should be in sync with one of the major sources of a hitter's power: the hip rotation. Frame-by-frame, lets see how Prince Fielder does it:

Prince Fielder hitting mechanics Prince Fielder

Prince Fielder generates excellent bat speed. But he is also efficient in terms of maximizing his power. What can be determined from this clip:

1. What happens at toe touch (frame 4)?

Fielder's weight is in its final stages of transfering the weight from his back leg to his front leg. However, in frame 5 his knee twists open a bit. This enables Fielder's hips to rotate quickly.

2. What happens right before foot plant (frame 6)?

Notice the hands. They start moving forward. Notice the hips (use his belt as an indicator). They start opening. Fielder's weight has shifted forward into his front leg, which is just about to firm up and provide Fielder a tight base to unload his hips.

3. What happens at foot plant (frame 7)?

The hands make their way through the hitting zone. The hips are unloaded and Fielder is turning his hips and arms together rather than getting "extension". And because of this, a swing full of power is generated. All in a matter of miliseconds.

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