Role of Abdominal Muscles In Transverse Motion | Core Exercises
When performing movements in which athletes complete actions which laterally cross the midpoint of the body, athletes are performing movements in the transverse plane. Examples of transverse movements are swinging a golf club or swinging a baseball bat. The abdominal muscles are important while performing movements in the transverse plane. Core strength exercises are essential for baseball players to make major improvements in hitting and throwing.
The abdominal muscles aid the body in moving in the transverse plane and provide stability and power to the upper and lower body while performing these movements. Core exercises should be utilized to help baseball players gain more control and power while moving through the transverse plane. As a batter swings at a baseball optimal core strength will aid in making contact with the baseball as it goes through the strike zone and provide more power when contact is made with the baseball bat. When a pitcher throws a baseball core strength will aid in achieving greater accuracy and pitch velocity.
Executing The Core Strength Exercise
To execute the KB Powerbands Resisted Partner Rotations baseball players will need a set of KB Powerbands and a partner to perform the core strength exercise. Baseball players must select the correct resistance to properly execute the core exercise. Resistance should not be so great that form begins to break down at any point in the core strength exercise. There are many different combinations of bands which can be used individually or paired together to challenge even the strongest of athletes.
Once proper resistance is established both athletes will grab a handle on the end of the KB Powerbands, move far enough apart so there is no slack in the KB Powerbands, stand so both athletes are facing forward, and hold the handle out in front of the body in line with the chest. It is important, as athletes move through the core exercise, the hands stay in line with the chest to properly work the abdominal muscles.
With their feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart athletes will make the initial movement after a verbal cue is given from one of the partners or a coach. From a flat footed position athletes will begin the core strength exercise as athletes begin to rotate their hand and chest away from their partner, keeping the tension felt from the KB Powerbands in the abs and pinching the shoulder blades. Movements should be smooth and controlled and at no time should athletes use the arms to complete the rotation. Athletes need to stay in unison as they rotate toward and away from their partner.
Baseball players will complete 8-12 controlled repetitions of the core strength exercise with 45 seconds to 3 minutes of rest in-between sets. Athletes will complete 3-4 sets of the core strength exercise. Upon completion of the core exercise athletes will move into the seated position and perform the same number of repetitions and sets from this position. Moving to the seated position will allow athletes to completely take their hips out of the KB Powerbands Partner Rotation and focus on developing greater core strength.
Proper Technique During Core Exercises
As athletes perform the core exercise there are many technical factors to be considered. Athletes need to make sure, as they rotate away from their partner, they do not let the KB Powerbands sit across the chest or the shoulders. Tension must be kept in the abs throughout the entire core exercise.
As athletes extend their hands during the core strength exercise it is important they do not let their shoulders roll forward. This can be accomplished by athletes pinching their shoulder blades together as they. Athletes need to keep a big chest and be sure the hands stay in line with the center of the chest throughout the core strength drill. A good way to keep the hands in line with the chest is by imagining a line running from the chest through their hands and not breaking this line throughout the entirety of the core exercise. Athletes need to be sure they are completing the core exercise with the abdominal muscles and are not leaning or using body weight to aid in the completion of the rotation.
Athletes should keep a slight bend in their knees to help utilize the hips as athletes complete the workout. If legs are locked out, or feet are placed to close together, it will become difficult for athletes to completely use the abdominal muscles to complete the rotation.
Communication is key during the core exercise and athletes must stay in unison throughout the rotations. If athletes become out of sink and rotate at different times they will not receive the full benefit of the core exercise, as the resistance in the KB Powerbands will be compromised.
Using Resisted Partner Rotations to Enhance Baseball Skills
Athletes may perform the KB Powerband Resisted Partner Rotations in large group training settings or as a partner core exercise. By utilizing this core exercise athletes will see great development in the abdominal muscles, especially the obliques. These muscles are essential for smooth, powerful, and controlled movements as athletes swing through the strike zone or deliver a high velocity pitch from the mound.
Developing rotational power and abdominal strength will translate to improvements in every facet of a baseball players skill set. When fielding a ground ball down the third base line a baseball player will rely on core strength to stabilize the body and improve accuracy and quickness as the fielder locates the ball in the glove and make a quick and accurate throw before the baserunner is able to advance. During a double play when the shortstop is flipping the ball to the second baseman the fielder relies on excellent body control and core strength to quickly turn and make an accurate throw to the first baseman.
Following the KB Powerbands Resisted Partner Rotations athletes should perform baseball specific drills. Particularly focus on hitting drills for batters to see the improvements the KB Powerbands Resisted Partner Rotations can have on core strength and overall athletic performance.
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