9 Exercises Necessary to Be In Top Baseball Condition

Dumbbell Lateral Eccentric to Concentric Twist

Grab a light weight in the five to fifteen pound range. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and the dumbbell held in your interlocked fingers at chest level. Your arms should be slightly bent and your back in a neutral spine position.

Now perform an eccentric wind up by moving the weight to your right side, as if you were winding up with a baseball bat. Keep your arms locked in a slightly bent position. The rotation for movement should be coming from your hips. Now explode concentrically to come back past your starting position and around to the left side.

Now repeat, but starting the move to the left hand side. Change sides with each rep as you complete your set.

Isometric 3-Level Broad Jump

Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and knees slightly bent. Maintain a neutral spine and place your hands by your ears. Now, without changing your knee position (do not bend down further to load), jump forward with both feet together, trying to achieve a distance of about two feet. As soon as you land, jump again, without adjusting the knee angle. Now pivot to face back in the direction you have come from.

This time bend your knees a little bit further, so that you are in a half squat position. Now, perform a double jump just as before, again without altering your knee position. Then, pivot and drop down into a parallel squat position. Now perform your last two jumps. Be sure to keep a slight arch in your back as you do your jumps (don’t allow your back to become rounded as you fatigue).

This is  a great progression to develop overall power in your legs. The first level of the jump targets your quads. Dropping down slightly transfers the focus to the hamstrings, while the bottom level is all about hitting the glutes.

Hang Clean Into Press

In order to develop power for hitting a baseball, you’ll find that the barbell is you best friend. It allows you to progressively overload the key muscles needed for strength and power. The most effective types of barbell exercises for your sport are those that require explosive movements. These are known as Olympic, or Oly, exercises. By mastering the art of Oly lifting, you will be giving yourself a huge advantage.

The Hang Clean Into Press is a great move for developing power through the hips, lats and shoulders. Stand behind a loaded barbell with feet shoulder width apart. Maintain a neutral spine position as you drop your hips to bend down to the bar, grabbing it with a double overhand grip at shoulder width. Now stand to bring the bar to mid thigh level. This is the hang position.

From this position, clean the bar to shoulder level by pulling your arms up and elbows out. Immediately go into an overhead press. Maintain a rhythmic motion as you progress through the reps. Avoid the tendency to push through your legs as you press overhead.

Push Up Knee Twist

This is a great exercise to develop power through the core. Start at the top of a push up position. Do a standard push up, then bring your right knee up toward your left elbow, tensing your intercostals as it comes across. Kick your leg back and then do your next push up. After completing it, bring your left knee cross to your right elbow. Alternate legs as you progress through the reps.

High Snatch Pull

Stand behind a loaded barbell with feet shoulder width apart.  Maintain a neutral spine position as you drop your hips to bend down to the bar, grabbing it with a double overhand grip at a few inches wider than shoulder width.

With this exercise you are going to explode up to bring the bar up in a row motion to your chest level. As you come up, rise onto the balls of your feet and bring your elbows as high as possible. Continue rhythmically through your reps.

Explosive Lunges

Explosive lunges are a very good explosive plyometric move to develop power in the quads and glutes. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and your hands on your hips. Now take a big step forward, allowing your rear knee to drop to a position a few inches from the floor.

Push through the quads to explosively jump back at the start position. As you bring your forward leg back, bring the rear leg forward. Maintain a rhythmic motion as you go.

Abdominal Air Bike

Lie on the floor on your back with your hands resting by your ears. Maintain a neutral spine and a straight neck line with the spine. Now bring both legs up so that they are at a right angle to your torso. Bend your knees so that they are at a right angle to your quads.

Now, crunch your right elbow to your left knee in a slow, controlled motion. Consciously feel the contraction through the intercostals as you move. Alternate sides as you move through the set.

Putting It All Together

Now that you’ve got a handle on the key exercises, let’s combine them into a killer workout that will get you in peak shape for game day:

Dumbbell Lateral Eccentric to Concentric Twist – 4 sets of 10 each side

Isometric 3-Level Broad Jump – 4 sets of 6 at each knee angle

Hang Clean Into Press – 4 sets of 8

Push Up Knee Twist – 4 sets of 12

High Snatch Pull –  4 sets of 8

Explosive Lunges – 4 sets of 12

Abdominal Air Bike – 4 sets of 12