Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Softball Team Bag: Points to Consider When Purchasing One

ByJay Merritt

A softball team bag definitely reflects a positive and professional image for any squad, youth to senior players!

A softball team bag serves the main purpose of carrying player equipment including shin guards, helmets, gloves and other personal items. Equipment bags come in various shapes and sizes, for various age groups and levels of play from youth to adult.

It is extremely important that you choose a softball team bag that is of good quality and which will last many seasons. The material should be very durable and have reinforced stitching to avoid tearing. The best materials tend to be stain and tear resistant, for easy maintenance.

A nylon bag is highly water resistant and is recommended if the bag will be brought to the playing field.

So, when you go to buy your equipment bag, consider these factors: cost, style, carrying comfort, and durability. It should complement the players by proudly displaying the team logo and player number. It should be comfortable to carry either by hand straps or over the shoulder. The bag should be large enough too comfortable carry all the players equipment including player shoes.

A common problem with softball team equipment bags are zippers that fail. Be sure that the zippers installed on your bags are 2 way metal to reduce zipper problems.

Order your softball team bag custom made in your team colors - with your logo on both sides of the bag and player numbers on both ends of the bag and watch team moral increase!

Be sure to visit http://BagsforSports.com to view a wide selection of available equipment bags.

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Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Softball Drills - The Basics of Sliding

ByBecky Wittenburg

Sliding is a crucial move that players are very hesitant to learn. Often, this hesitation is based on a fear of getting hurt. Because players will never get over this fear until they actually start practicing sliding, coaches should do everything they can to make learning to slide as easy as possible. The following softball drills teach the basics of sliding in a way that will soon make players comfortable performing this base running move as often as necessary.

Sliding Stance

The first thing players should learn in their sliding lesson is the basic sliding stance. Players should start by sitting on the ground with both legs extended straight in front of them. Then, they should practice folding one knee under to see which position is more natural and comfortable for them.

When they assume the stance, they should have one leg extended with the foot pointed toward the base, the other leg bent at the knee with the foot pointed behind them, and both hands raised in the air. Players will be tempted to put their hands down to break their fall as they go into the slide, but lowering their hands will only increase their risk of injury. They should slide down onto their thighs and buttocks.

Learning to Slide

Coaches can make the first attempts at sliding easier by practicing on a wet field after it has rained or with the help of a hose or sprinkler. Before holding a sliding practice, instruct players to wear grungy clothes. Players will be better prepared to slide properly on a wet surface than a hard one. Starting out the practice by sliding on the wet grass can be very helpful.

If a coach is feeling adventurous, he or she could bring a slip & slide to practice. Wet down a long piece of plastic by placing a water hose on top. On a hot day, players will be more than willing to practice their slide on a slippery plastic surface.

Scrambled Eggs Drill

If players have learned the basic sliding position but are still having trouble keeping their hands in the air, the scrambled eggs drill is the best way to correct their stance. To run this drill, coaches will have to bring a couple dozen raw eggs to practice. Have the players practice sliding into bases while holding one raw egg in each hand. In order to keep the eggs from breaking, the players will have to hold them high in the air. To make the drill more challenging, have players get real low during the slide, or have them slide into one base and then immediately hop up to run to the next one.

And if you'd like to see more free softball drills and coaching tips, go here to watch a free video:

http://www.softball-spot.com/vid/

Becky Wittenburg is a kids softball coach, and the owner and publisher of Softball-Spot.com, the web's #1 resource for fastpitch softball drills, tips, and practice ideas for youth and high school coaches.

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Monday, 11 March 2013

How to Build a Bat Rolling Machine

ByDave Manly

One of the most searched areas in bat rolling is .

There are several factors that go into building a bat roller. I will break this article out so you can make a n enlightened decision to whether you want to take on such an endeavor.

Here are some questions that need to be answered before you start a project.

How the machine worksParts and MaterialsCostTime

How the Machine Works:

Before any of these can be answered you will first need to decide on what type of a machine you are looking at.

PerpendicularThe bat is inserted 90 degrees to the rollers and can only roll 1 way.
Parallel
The bat is inserted from the sides along the plane of the rollers and the entire sweet spot can be rolled at once.

Most parallel machines can roll both ways, but a perpendicular machine can only roll 1. Also a perpendicular machine will leave flat spots in the bat and not roll the entire sweet spot.

We highly recommend a parallel machine.

The machines work by compressing the carbon fibers and laminates between rollers and then rolling the bat between the rollers. Primarily the sweet spot of the bats are the section you are targeting during the roll.

Material List

The ShellTypically made of steel or aluminumHolds the guts of the machineWelded or screwed together
Upper Carriage
Holds the upper rollersMoves up and downTolerances are tight
Bearings
Rollers BearingsThrust BearingsBushings
Shafts
Handles
Rollers
Made of plastic, steel, wood, otherTolerances are very tightThe center hole through the roller must be fairly exactRollers are machined on a metal lathe

Cost

The cost of building a machine can greatly very... but you can figure the minimum will be $200 plus, depending on your bearings and roller materials. It will be more for the state of the art plastics that are being used in the better bat rolling machines.

Time

Building a machine will take some time as you will have to draw out the design and then cut and machine the parts and gather the bearings etc.

Bottom line is this is a project that can be taken on if you are a do it yourself person who has proper equipment and time and some designing knowledge. A machining background or a friend who has one would help here.

Another viable option is to purchase a Bat Rolling Machine directly from a reputable manufacturer. Here are a few things to look for when choosing that manufacturer.

ReputationWhat type of machines are the offeringDo they have multiple models to fit you individual needsWe recommend parallel machines as they give you the best of both worlds and are not limited to partial break in as the perpendicular machines are.
What plastics are they using in their bat rolling machines

You need to stay away from a plastic called Acetal with a trade name of Delrin. It is really hard and has zero forgiveness.

Panther Machines

The Panther Series of Bat Rolling Machines

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Sunday, 10 March 2013

Softball Practice Drills - Improve Vision With These Training Drills

ByBecky Wittenburg

In softball, vision refers to more than just eye sight. Vision involves the ability to accurately perceive factors such as motion, location, and rotation on the field or at the plate. Even players who have perfect 20/20 eye sight can improve their softball vision by using these exercises as part of their softball practice drills.

Softball and Vision

Softball players rely on accurate vision for every aspect of the game. Athletes are constantly making decisions, and their vision will affect their ability to succeed on the field. Consider the role good vision has on the following choices:

When batting, the hitter must decide how or whether to swing based on the location, speed, and rotation of the pitch.When base running, the player must choose whether to run or stay and when she can successfully steal.When fielding grounders or fly balls, the outfielder must determine where to meet the ball and decide where to throw the ball once she has it.

Good vision can make an average player a great player, and bad vision can keep a great player from truly excelling. The following drills will help players at any level improve their softball vision.

Color/Number Drill

Use a permanent marker to write the numbers zero through nine on hitting practice balls. Use a black marker for some balls and a red marker for other balls (or add even more colors - just remember to change up the colors and numbers so players can't remember). As they practice hitting, have them identify the balls before they take a swing. Progress through these drills, which start easy and then get more difficult:

Identify just the color.Identify just the number.Say both the color and the number.For an additional challenge, increase the speed of the pitches.

Colored Ball Drill

Use different colors to mark balls used for hitting practice. Players will swing based on the action designated for each color. For example:

Black mark - hit awayRed mark - do not swingBlue mark - bunt

Additional Exercises

Players can also work on improving their vision at home. Simple exercises like training their eyes to switch from focusing on a computer screen or a book to focusing on a specific object in the distance (like a photo across the room or a tree across the street) will help increase focus time and vision accuracy. Also, when players are driving, they should practice moving their eyes from focusing on the dashboard to looking at license plates of other cars on the road. If a player has access to a record player, she can improve her dynamic visual acuity by placing small letters from a magazine on the record and practice identifying them as it revolves.

And if you'd like to see more free softball drills and coaching tips, go here to watch a free video: http://www.softball-spot.com/vid/

Becky Wittenburg is a kids softball coach, and the owner and publisher of Softball-Spot.com, the web's #1 resource for fastpitch softball drills, tips, and practice ideas for youth and high school coaches.

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Saturday, 9 March 2013

Cost Effective Sports Wear for Your Team

ByCatherine M

When it comes to sports, all teams wear their specifically designed outfits as this makes them easily identifiable. You can also choose from a plethora of new designs and colors that complements the style of your team.

Every sport has its own different style, whether it is soccer, baseball, softball or basketball, players are dressed to make a style statement. Sportswear may differ on the basis of the design, color, fitting or simply the style and appearance of the material. Sports uniforms should be comfortable and supportive so that you can perform at the highest level possible. The selection of these uniforms, gloves, cleats and others should be done with suitable care as they should be top notch in performance, quality and durability. Uniforms must come with excellent quality, should be high in durability and low in pricing. You can even have your uniforms personalized in a variety of sublimated designs.

The Jersey is the essence of a team as it distinguishes them from another team. It is a shirt worn by each member of a team, depicting the name of the player along with a number as well as the logo of the team. Jerseys are usually made of micro fiber material to help absorb sweat from the body and allow it to evaporate. These fabrics are mainly cotton, nylon or polyester which are light in weight and allow proper movement to make them comfortable and stylish. These are available in various designs, patterns and colors, usually with a single dominant color. A Soccer jersey has an accent stripe on the sleeves and sides. These short sleeved jerseys have the neck either rounded or v shaped. Some of the soccer uniforms have a flashy look because of certain knitting on the fabric. Jerseys should be light in weight, stable, durable, breathable and be able to hold their color without fading. Softball jerseys sometimes exhibit a buttoned up round neck. The shoulders of many jerseys are reinforced with cotton tape to add stability and prevent stretching.

Sports shorts should have loose weaves offering the player good support without curbing the motion. Shorts should be manufactured with great caution and be a perfect fit, allowing sufficient airflow. These shorts are either woven or knit and usually made of polyester, determining the durability and flexibility of the uniform. The basic inseam of youth sizes is 3 to 4 inches which allows players to run around actively and freely. The high quality fabric used in shorts provides a more comfortable and richer look. The binding around the leg holes is set on with a machine to help stretch without cracking the stitches.

Sport shoes, generally known as cleats, are an integral part of a soccer uniform. While choosing cleats, just ensure that they are well fitted and comfortable, allowing perfect movement of the feet and assisting in rapid changes of direction. Poor fitting of the cleats may lead to sprained ankles and falls. They should fit comfortably even with the shin guards in place and be able to provide additional traction to the players on a soft surface. Cleats generally must have large studs on the bottom to assist in gripping the surface and preventing sliding. You can choose shoes from various styles like madrid, roma, classic, cope turf and many more that give you comfort and enhance your performance. Cleats should be teamed up with a good pair of socks. As insignificant as it may sound, but socks manufactured with quality fabric are useful in keeping the player's feet dry and warm. Socks can make cleats more comfortable and protect the feet from the damages which might be caused by running constantly.

If you are looking for sports wear which will help you create a distinguished look for your team, you can search the Internet and find a few companies providing a variety of cost effective softball uniforms to keep up with the changing pace.

This article has been written by an expert associated with Shop 4 teams, a company providing a wide range of high quality soccer uniforms at competent prices.

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Friday, 8 March 2013

Bat Rolling Machines - Are They Legal?

ByDave Manly

Is Bat Rolling Legal?

This is a question I hear a lot and the debate goes on.

The short answer is yes and no.

There really are a couple areas to cover when answering this question.
The integrity of enhancing a natural break-in of a bat by compressing and rolling it in a machine.The legality of rolling a bat

The Integrity:

This is a debate that has been going on for years and there is not a clear cut answer to it. With that being said, because it does not allow any bat to be broken in past a natural break in period, it is this author's opinion that integrity and honor are not a real issue here.

I would take this one step further and say that since many of these bats cost well in excess of $300, the owner owes it to him or herself to get the maximum potential out of the bat from the first swing. Since the new bats are toned down to around 92 - 93 mph out of the wrapper and only hit in the 98 mph range once fully broken in, it is of even more importance to break these bats in quickly.

The glues and laminates that are being used in the new bats are stiffer and harder, so it is now taking even longer in the natural break in process.

The Legality of Rolling:

Rolling any bat is 100% legal. The issue comes into play about where these bats are used.

Some leagues have no rules against using a rolled bat, while others specifically say they can not be used. This is an area that each individual user needs to search out for his or herself. I am not suggesting or implying that it is legal to use a rolled bat in leagues. I am also not suggesting or implying that you should go against any league rules.

I can say however that at the present time, a bat that has been correctly rolled will not be detectable. Rolling does not change the appearance or feel to these bats.

Are Bat Rolling Machines Legal?

Yes, these machines are legal and you have a right to roll any bat with them. Again the usage of the bat becomes the responsibility of the owner of the bat.

Again though, as mentioned above, these bat companies are offering bats on the market that come out of the package in the low 90's mph with the understanding that they will top out at 98 mph once fully broken in.

In Conclusion:
Rolling Bats is legalBat Rolling Machines are legalThe usage and responsibility of a fully broken in bat that does not exceed the 98 mph mark intended for the bat, is up to the owner.

Panther Machines

The All New Panther Series of Bat Rolling Machines

Panther 250 - Panther 500 - Panther 750 - Panther Xtreme

The Panther Series from Panther Machines is leading industry by allowing you to roll both perpendicular and or parallel on the same machine. These are the best machines on the market. Please visit Panther Machines at http://www.batrollers.com

About the Author Dave is the owner of Panther Machines. Panther Machines is the leader in the industry in both the production and sales of Bat Rolling Machines.

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Thursday, 7 March 2013

Bat Rolling Machines - What You Should Know About the Plastics Being Used

ByDave Manly

I have referred to the plastics being used in a couple of articles I have written. This subject is so important that I have decided to write an article that addresses this area exclusively.

There are several plastics on the market today. The one most machines are using is a plastic called UHMW. This is a plastic that has been used for years and does a fairly good job during the bat rolling process. Most manufacturers like the cost of this product and simply are not willing to put out the expense to go beyond the qualities of this product.

This is a good choice but is a slick and slippage can be a problem. Adding texture to the rollers helps eliminate the slippage problem with this material. I only know of one company that machines and textures this plastic.

At least one bat rolling manufacturer is using this plastic and referring to it as nylon. Since it looks like nylon, your average consumer will never know the difference.

Another plastic that is being used in bat rolling machines is Acetal. This particular plastic is very, very hard. It does roll bats well as far as compression, but this plastic has some major drawbacks. It is also referred to as Delrin, which is actually the trade mark name. Acetal and Delrin are two different names for the same plastic.

Delrin - Acetal has some phenomenal qualities which work great in industry, but not so good in bat rollers, or bat rolling machines. The plastic rollers will last forever... but you are in danger of bat damage. Unless you are a professional roller who has rolled hundreds of bats... I would stay away from any machines that are using this product. This product is just too hard to make a good choice. There is no forgiveness. Also it too is very slick and unless textured, you can expect slippage problems with the harder and stiffer bats.

There is a third plastic which is now showing up on the market and it is being marketed as a proprietary plastic. The qualities being mentioned with this plastic are that it not too hard, has recall memory, and solves the slippage problem. Since the plastic being used in this machine is not being mentioned because of proprietary reasons, I can not include the exact type of this plastic. What I can say is that these are the qualities that should be looked for when purchasing a high-end Bat Rolling Machine.

The most important thing is that you choose a machine that rolls bats well but also grips and has forgiving qualities too it. I am not suggestion that rolling is difficult or even rocket science. What I am saying is that it is important to do your homework so you are able to choose your Bat Rolling Machine and Company from an educated and enlightened position.

Recap:

1. Too hard of a plastic has zero tolerance for forgiveness
2. Too slick of a plastic will result in bat slippage on stiff and some new bats.
3. Do your homework and choose a machine that serves you needs and experience.

By following this outline you will be able to choose the right machine for you and will have years of happy rolling. There truly are some great Bat Rolling Machines on the market today.

Panther Machines

Check out the all new Panther Series of Bat Rolling Machines - The Panther Series from Panther Machines is leading industry by allowing you to roll both perpendicular and or parallel on the same machine. These are the best machines on the market. Please visit Panther Machines at http://www.batrollers.com

About the Author - Dave is the owner of Panther Machines. Panther Machines is the leader in the industry in both the production and sales of Bat Rolling Machines

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Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Bat Rolling Machine - Steel Verses Aluminum

ByDave Manly

Bat Rolling Machines today are constructed of several different types of materials, steel, aluminum, wood and even plastic. They come in many shapes and sizes and designs. The two most common are steel and aluminum. Steel being the predominate choice for manufactures and users.

In addition the machines can be welded, bolted, screwed, or glued together. The choice and ways of construction seem to be endless.

By far steel is the number 1 choice of construction. This is followed by aluminum, which covers about 3% of the market. I am going to discuss both of these materials and construction procedures.

How each machine is constructed and the type of material and thickness of material being used all need to come into play when choosing a machine. Also important is just what your needs are after purchase.

Steel Constructed:

The lion share of the bat rolling machines on the market today, around 95% are made out of steel. The main reason is that welded steel is very strong and enduring and if constructed correctly, will last forever.

A steel constructed bat rolling machine that is welded together will be stronger than one that is screwed or bolted together. The nature of welding itself is the reason. The entire body of the machine is fused together. If the bat rolling machine is made of the correct thickness and type of steel, then you could run over them with a tank (virtually speaking) and still not damage them. This is taking into consideration that the welding is done by a professional welder.

A steel constructed, welded machine is by far the most durable bat rolling machine on the market. A reputable manufacturer will easily be able to replace any parts and or rollers on these machines. The parts and plastics that are being used today make a need for such warranty work all but obsolete.

Aluminum Constructed:

Since all of the aluminum machines I have seen are screwed together, they are not as strong. Screws often times loosen and come out. A welded aluminum bat rolling machine would be stronger than a screwed one if the metal being used was thick enough. The key on a welded machine would be the welder. Welding aluminum is quite difficult and only a highly skilled welder can perform this task.

One argument that has been made by a manufacturer of screwed machines is that parts are more easily replaceable. Since any roller that has to be replaced needs to be replaced by a manufacture anyway, this would seem to be a moot point. Rollers must be correctly machined and tuned. In addition the rollers are pressed on, so the machine needs to be sent back to the manufacturer to get this correctly accomplished.

Wood:

A wood constructed machine is also a choice. If they are glued and screwed then they are built stronger than an aluminum, screwed together machine. I only have seen a few of these on the market

Conclusion:

If you are looking for the strongest built Bat Rolling Machine, then your choice would be steel constructed, welded machine. Most important in this choice is choosing a reputable manufacturer or sales representative who stands behind their machines and warranties. By doing your homework and correctly choosing your machine, you will enjoy years of happy rolling.

Panther Machines

Check out the all new Panther Series of Bat Rolling Machines - The Panther Series from Panther Machines is leading industry by allowing you to roll both perpendicular and or parallel on the same machine. These are the best machines on the market. Please visit Panther Machines at http://www.batrollers.com

About the Author - Dave is the owner of Panther Machines. Panther Machines is the leader in the industry in both the production and sales of Bat Rolling Machines

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Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Bat Rolling Machine - 10 Reasons to Purchase One - No, Eleven Reasons

ByDave Manly

Bat Rolling is a process that enhances the distance that a composite softball or baseball bat hits a ball. It really can be the difference between an out and a base hit, or even a home-run.

10 Reasons to Purchase a Bat Rolling Machine:
Not knowing or being familiar with the person or company that is doing the rolling on your $300 or $400 bat.The cost of sending out and having others roll your bats.Wanting to make sure your bat is rolled and done correctlyNot wishing that others know that you are using a bat that has this advantageNot wishing to take the time to ship your bat.Wanting instant break-in of the batWishing to use the Bat Rolling Machine to make some extra incomeWishing to roll your entire teams bats.Wishing to roll your sons or daughters bats.Start your own bat rolling companyBecause you want one. Number eleven... so it does not count.

There are of course, many more reasons why you would purchase a bat rolling machine. I could go on and on, but I will expound a little on these.

By purchasing your own bat rolling machine, you will have 100% peace of mind that your bat is rolled correctly. I have heard stories many times of bats being sent to a bat rolling company and when it came back it appeared that nothing had been done to it. Then once it was taken to the ball park, it seemed to have no increase in power or distance. There are a few reputable bat rolling companies around that I would trust with my bat, just not many.

The cost of sending your bats in to be rolled needs to also be considered. Once you have sent in 8 -10 bats or so, you have paid for the lion share of the cost of owning your own machine. There is also a time factor involved as you have to package and send it in. In addition to the cost of the rolling, you also need to consider the cost of shipment, which is around $12 to send it priority mail and or ups ground. So the cost of sending in 8 bats times around $40 once you include shipping, comes to $320.

The time factor also comes into play in your determination of whether you should purchase a new machine. Most of the time you purchase your new bat, you are wishing to go our and swing it in the next game or tournament, or at practice to see how it performs. By purchasing your own Bat Rolling Machine you will be able to do this immediately.

Once you own your own machine, the advantages become obvious. You now are able to roll your bats instantly along with any others. Often times a team will want to go together and purchase one so all can enjoy the benefits. The advantage of being able to roll bats without others knowing is obvious.

Many are buying machines to take to the ball parks or use out of their homes to make extra money. I have heard countless stories of how their machine paid for itself in the first week or first month.

Finally you can buy a bat rolling machine because you want one. When you do not get what you want for Christmas or a birthday, why not purchase a machine for yourself. Once you have purchased your new machine, you can roll bats in the peace of your own home when you want. You will have many years of happy rolling.

Panther Machines

Check out the all new Panther Series of Bat Rolling Machines - The Panther Series from Panther Machines is leading industry by allowing you to roll both perpendicular and or parallel on the same machine. These are the best machines on the market. Please visit Panther Machines at http://www.batrollers.com

About the Author
Dave is the owner of Panther Machines. Panther Machines is the leader in the industry in both the production and sales of Bat Rolling Machines

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Monday, 4 March 2013

Bat Rolling Machine - In Search of the Truth

ByDave Manly

There are many articles out today on bat rolling and bat rolling machines. This article is going to make bold statements and try to cut to the chase in order to arrive to this authors' opinion of the truth. The facts I present will help you to come to your own conclusion in several areas.

Bat rolling is a process that came into existence around 1999 and really started showing up around 2003. It has taken off in the last 3 or so years. It is a process of expediting the break in period of a composite bat.

The bats are placed between rollers and then the rollers are squeezed together at increased intervals. This loosens the fibers, with the results being a trampoline effect. It increases performance of a bat and the ability to hit balls further. The science and studies surrounding bat rolling has been around since 2004 and it is well know in baseball and softball circles that it works. Increasing ball flight from 20 to 50 feet on a well hit ball will be the result of a correctly rolled bat.

Articles have been written on parallel machines being better, also larger shafts, types of bearings, companies and manufacturers, and which machines are best. The list goes on and on and can become very confusing to the average consumer who is wishing to get his or her bat rolled and or purchase a bat rolling machine. Much of what is written is a sales pitch and not much more.

However, by carefully deciphering, common sense, should prevail. I hope to help in this area where I can.

Truth:

Which is better, a parallel or perpendicular machine?

The truth is a parallel machine. Most of these machines will also roll perpendicular and for this reason alone they are a better purchase. In addition to being able to roll both parallel and perpendicular, they also give you the ability to roll the entire sweet spot of a bat. If you only roll parallel then you also can roll a bat much quicker.

Does the plastic of the rollers matter?

Yes, absolutely. This perhaps is the most important question you can answer. Too hard and bat breakage and spider webbing follows. Too slick and slippage follows. Too soft and it does not properly break in a bat. Bottom line is harder is better... but too hard and you have major issues on your hand.

There is one plastic on the market that really concerns me. It is Acetal and also known under the trade name Delrin. Its' main properties are its hardness and how slick it is. It is extremely hard and slick. Neither of these makes for a good bat rolling machine. I would advise any consumer to look into the plastic before purchasing a machine. Personally I would stay away from this plastic and any machine that is using it.

What is the best plastic to use?

Research has been done by some, but such a statement can not be made as 100% factual as new plastics are coming out and cost also has to be taken into consideration. I can say that at least one manufacturer is using a duo-core plastic that has all the properties needed to make a great Bat Rolling Machine. The inner core has hardness and the outer layer grips the bats well to eliminate slippage. It is not hard to understand that this is the best of both worlds.

What is the most important question to answer before purchasing a machine?

In my mind there really are two. One is the plastics and construction of the machine and the second is the customer service of the manufacturer or sales rep. Reputation and standing behind their machines is huge.

In Conclusion:

The most important thing to remember is to do your research before you purchase your next machine. Purchase a machine from a reputable company and above all, make sure the plastic rollers are not too hard. Too soft is not good, but too hard can be disastrous

Panther Machines

The All New Panther Series of Bat Rolling Machines

Panther 250
Panther 500
Panther 750 (Proprietary Rollers)
Panther Xtreme (Duo-Core Proprietary Rollers)

The Panther Series from Panther Machines is leading industry by allowing you to roll both perpendicular and or parallel on the same machine. These are the best machines on the market. Please visit Panther Machines at http://www.batrollers.com

About the Author
Dave is the owner of Panther Machines. Panther Machines is the leader in the industry in both the production and sales of Bat Rolling Machines

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Sunday, 3 March 2013

Bat Rolling Machine - Extremely Hard Rollers Break Bats

ByDave Manly

In the quest for lifetime warranties and easy rolling, there are Bat Rolling Machines that are using extremely hard rollers. Honestly, I can not figure out how such rollers have evolved. It is an example of research and development that has gone bad.

There have been several areas that needed to be addressed. The machines being built need to solve these problems.

Here is a short list of the areas that needed to be addressed.

Bat SlippageEase of RollingLong lastingBat Damage

However, the most important area is the protection of the bats that are being rolled. While no manufacturer can offer 100% guarantees of the bats themselves, do too many factors, it is my professional opinion that all areas of research should center on the needs of the consumer. A broken bat will quickly ruin your day and it only takes one.

Acetal Plastic which is also known as Delrin is a material that solved 1 of these problem areas. This plastic will last. Where it fails is in the other 3.

This plastic replaces steel in many applications of industrial usage. You will see it used in areas such as pulleys and gears. Bull gears and pinion gears are often made of this material. Hardness and lack of friction are its 2 main properties. It is nearly as hard as steel.

Bat Slippage:

Bat slippage also can be an issue in the bat rolling industry. This is when a bat slips on the rollers during the rolling process. This can occur at higher levels of pressure. This can not be solved by using a material that is low in friction. The plastic needs to grip the bat well to solve the slippage problem. Teflon is another plastic that has great properties, but should be stayed away from in the bat rolling industry.

Ease of Rolling:

A couple of areas need to be taken into consideration in this category. You need a material that solves the slippage problem and also compresses the bat well. Both are equally important.

Long Lasting:

The ability to put a good warranty on a machine is extremely important, but it should not be the only deciding factor when selecting a material to use in the rollers of a machine. The other factors should be taken into consideration.

Bat Breakage:

I have seen articles written on this subject, and one statement suggests that harder is better when it comes to the rollers in bat rolling machines. I also have heard of and seen bat damage from these extremely hard rollers and even bat breakage.

The Solution:

There are plastics available that solve all of the problems that were mentioned in this article. There are solid core plastics that bridge the gap. There is even at least one Bat Rolling Machine that utilizes a duo-core plastic. This plastic has hardness in its center core and gripping ability and memory recall on its outer shell.

In Conclusion:

Too hard of a plastic will last forever, but you have a high risk of damaging and or breaking an expensive bat. There are plastic rollers on the market that bridge the gap and will give you the professional result that you deserve. You just need to do a little research and you will have many years of happy rolling.

Panther Machines

The All New Panther Series of Bat Rolling Machines

Panther 250

Panther 500

Panther 750 (Proprietary Rollers)

Panther Xtreme (Duo-Core Proprietary Rollers)

The Panther Series from Panther Machines is leading industry by allowing you to roll both perpendicular and or parallel on the same machine. These are the best machines on the market. Please visit Panther Machines at http://www.batrollers.com

About the Author
Dave is the owner of Panther Machines. Panther Machines is the leader in the industry in both the production and sales of Bat Rolling Machines

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Saturday, 2 March 2013

Bat Rolling Machine - Reviewing the New Duo-Core Plastics

ByDave Manly

There have been many articles written on Bat Rolling Machines

The Duo Core Plastic Rollers that have recently hit the market is one area that has not been discussed.

In constant search for a better bat rolling machine, the duo-core plastic roller has emerged. What is it and what is the need for it?

To answer this question, I need to answer the last part of the question first.

There are many rollers out today, and many variations of each. Each can serve a purpose or niche, if you will. What has transpired in the bat rolling machine revolution is the need to solve some problem areas.

Bat damage is one problem; bat slippage during the transaction of rolling is another. Still another is the longevity of the plastic rollers themselves. There have been many attempts on making a machine that solves all of these areas. It is this author's professional opinion that the duo-core plastic roller is the best solution to date.

The reason for this is the perception of the problem and then coming up with the best solution that covers all problem areas and how to best deal with them.

Duo-Core Plastic:

A duo-core plastic is a plastic made up of an inner core and an outer shell. By going with 2 different plastics, a machine can solve multiple problems. The inner core can solve the problem of hardness, which helps with the compression of the bats. The outer shell can be made out of a plastic with properties that can correctly grip the bat to eliminate slippage problems.

There are many good machines on the market today, and again your selection of your next Bat Rolling Machine depends on your needs and usage. That being said, I would recommend that you look into the duo-core bat rolling machines. They truly are the best the market has to offer.

The top bat rollers in the country have tested these new machines and the reviews are excellent.

In Conclusion:

A Duo-Core Bat Rolling Machine is a machine that uses plastics with an inner core and an outer shell. This gives the capability of solving multiple problem areas. If you are wishing to look at the best bat rolling machines on the market, then check out the new duo-core machines.

Panther Machines

Check Out Our all New Panther Series of Bat Rolling Machines.

The Panther Series from Panther Machines is leading industry by allowing you to roll both perpendicular and or parallel on the same machine. These are the best machines on the market. Please visit Panther Machines at http://www.batrollers.com

About the Author Dave is the owner of Panther Machines. Panther Machines is the leader in the industry in both the production and sales of Bat Rolling Machines

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Friday, 1 March 2013

How to Improve Your Bat Speed in Fastpitch Softball

There's little doubt there are men reading this who are either macho, muscle bound jocks, or beer bellied want to be athletes, who will scoff at the idea a player, most likely female, needs to know how to increase their bat speed for fastpitch softball.

All I can say is that just shows their ignorance of the sport. Obviously, they don't realize that female fastpitch hurlers, such as Jenny Finch, have struck major league batters out in pitching exhibitions. They don't have a clue that a softball pitcher can throw a rise, drop and curve ball, as well as a screaming fastball which rival any baseball pitcher when pitching distance is factored in.

So we won't bother addressing issues with these types of people, let's address methods of increasing our bat speed through the hitting zone. In actuality producing bat speed for softball hitters differs very little for the same desired goal in baseball.

Physical strength, like it or not, is the initial step in increasing our bat speed through the hitting zone. The Core of the body, the legs, hips, fingers and arms are the muscles of the body directly utilized to create the explosive energy required to swing the bat. Weak core strength equals a slow bat.

Therefore, the initial building block to increasing bat speed is increasing core body strength, of which the legs are first. Squats and lunges are old fashioned, yet still the undisputed best and quickest method to increase leg strength. The squats can be performed with or without weights. Should you decide to use weights, reps are more important than the amount of weight lifted, as reps builds endurance as well as muscle mass.

Lunges are an excellent method for not only increasing leg strength, but hip strength as well, which is imperative to being able to quickly open the body and create the explosive speed required to effectively hit the ball hard.

The fingers are the next body part we strengthen. No, I did not say hands, I said fingers. The hands essentially consists of two parts, the fingers and the palms. Palms have no strength, they are only there to affect holding an object, while the fingers squeeze the object. Squeezing a tennis or racquetball will increase the finger strength and there are balls designed for specifically squeezing which will also work.

Now that we have strengthened our core body, let's look at some drills you can perform which will also help increase bat speed as well as hitting in general.

Balance is a huge factor in maintaining body control which is essential to a good quick bat swing.

Here's a very simple drill for training hitters to not over stride. A rule of thumb is the hitter's stride should not exceed the length of his bat. Have two players working together, each with the same length bat.

The hitter takes a stride and swing as if he were hitting a pitch. He stops before his follow through. The second player lays his bat down between the hitters feet. If the stride is

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Thursday, 28 February 2013

The Social Opportunities Provided By Mixed Netball

ByClare C Heasly

During this age of technology the idea of socializing has taken on new views as a lot of individuals turn to the online environment. While having the power to communicate with individuals across the world is extremely attractive, it often limits the prospective of social interaction when seeking a more local base. For an individual who is seeking social interaction on a more local field or for a group of individuals trying to participate with others in a highly energetic and fun activity, there are real opportunities after you seek to take advantage of mixed netball. The game can easily be described as one of the most well-liked activities found in Australia and immensely encourages interaction outside of the technological realm.

For the person, this opportunity of netball is an unimaginable opportunity to get to know new folks in an environment where social interaction is greatly supported. Joining a team that frequently participates in this sport will allow you to interact with people on an everyday basis and lay the foundation to develop friendship as well as social connections. The sport of mixed netball consists of small teams that are in continuous motion and continuous interaction in the pursuit of accomplishing one goal. This focus typically helps to break down the awkwardness that could exist with meeting new individuals and instantly helps to begin the process of building friendship.

While there are various advantages to the game of netball for the individual trying to enter a more local social network, there are just as many opportunities out there to a group seeking interaction outside of conventional outlets. Whether you are looking to join the team as people or create a team on your own, the experiences found with this game permit you to interact with others on a daily basis.

As an added benefit to the social interaction, you will also discover new opportunities to enhance your health as you participate in the energetic atmosphere generated by this game. Through the utilization of mixed netball, you can find new avenues of entertainment as well as you begin to build relationships with other people and social groups.

Whereas the age of technology has gone to great lengths to improving the opportunity of communication, it has even helped in separating people as they rely on technological communication over verbal interaction. When you're looking to use a social avenue so as to create relationships or enhance an existing group, look to the opportunities that are created possible after you participate in netball. This upbeat and entertaining sport attracts the interest of every individual, no matter skill level and allows for constant interaction with recent friends and new individuals.

To find your best location to take advantage of this mixed netball opportunity, head to http://www.melbournenetball.com

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Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Softball Stats Software For Little League

Looking for the best software for little league players for your softball team. Have you ever experienced the feeling that you are just overwhelmed with all the statistics that you need to track in order to be able to get the stats for every single player on the team?

Great uses for Softball Stat Software

No more papers, everything can be done on your computerOrganization of all the data in one placeCombining reports from the whole entire softball seasonConverting all your statistics into a pdf so you can put on your website

Those are the main reasons why people use sports software tracking to get the statistics of the game. While there is many different reason you might need the software you have to look at all the features that you believe fits all of you needs.

The worst thing you can do is buy the cheapest software that they have to track the stats to realize that you are going to need to buy a new software because the one you bought it really not that good. With the purchase of the two you are spending more money than if you buy the software that you really believe will track all the stats that you want.

Stats can be used from the games of practice. One of the best things about stat software is that you can see what you have tracked and what your softball team needs to improve on in their game. This will be very beneficial to the performance of your team. If you track all that statistics separately then you will have to spend a lot of man hours combining stats instead of working on practices for you little league softball team.

Here is more information on softball stat software

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Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Learning To Run the Bases in Softball

is every bit as important as in baseball, but because lead offs are not allowed, base running strategy is much different. At 60' base paths vs. 90' in baseball, a smart runner can be every bit as effective as a fast runner, if not more so.

Tactics for running from home to 1st base is quite similar to baseball, as far as running hard through the base, never slow as you approach the base, and veering to the right after hitting the bag, as an overthrow will be to the right side of the runner's view.

The same tactic for an extra base hit, of swinging out towards the dugout, hitting the inside of the base and taking a straight line to second base, is identical to baseball.

Once on first base, the goal of advancing is identical to baseball, but the tactics utilized are totally different, as leadoffs are not allowed in softball. There are two methods of getting a good leadoff and jump on the ball to advance to second base.

The first thing to remember is the runner can not leave the base until the ball leaves the pitcher's hand, so timing is critical. This applies to every base, not just first base.

The first method is to place your left foot on the back half of the base, your right arm leading towards second base as your body is cocked towards the pitcher. As the pitcher releases the ball, push off the base with your left leg, take three steps forward, always facing and looking at the ball, hop, hop and stop, always being prepared to advance to second on a ground ball or passed ball, or to get quickly back to first base.

The second method is to place your right leg against the front of the base leading with your left arm. Take three steps, hop, hop and stop. Either one of these methods are fine, unless there's a particular reason for using one or the other, it's a matter of personal choice.

To lead off of second base you use one of the two methods described for first base, but the path you'll choose to third base will determine where you'll take your lead to.

If you're looking at a situation where it is imperative you reach third base as quickly as possible, such as in a sacrifice bunt situation, you will take your 3 step, hop, hop, stop lead in a direct line to third base. The old "shortest distance between two objects is a straight line" rule.

However, if you're in a normal situation of scoring being your ultimate goal, you will take your normal lead off, except you will not go in a straight line to third, but rather veer outwards toward left field. This will allow you to approach third base, on a hit, in a manner in which you can " Cut " the base by hitting the inside corner of the base with your foot, and project a straight line to home plate.

Leading off third base, again uses the identical sprinter's start. The runner will take their three step, hop, hop, stop lead, however when they stop their lead, it is critical the runner's shoulders are square to the infield, as they must be able to quickly return to third base. Should their shoulders be square with the catcher, they most likely will be thrown out by a good catcher, because they won't be able to turn their body around and return to third before the ball arrives.

There is another distinct difference between softball and baseball lead offs at third base. The initial lead off for both runners is taken in foul territory, a ball hitting either runner in fair territory is out, but where the baseball player returns to third in foul territory a softball runner returns in fair territory.

The reason for this is the difference of where the third baseman normally positions themselves. In baseball, the third baseman normally plays behind the base, so returning in fair territory would have the runner returning into the tag.

The third baseman in softball normally plays in front of the base, so by returning in fair territory the runner would obstruct the catcher's throw.

Jim Bain - Former Minor league baseball player, who since retiring has dedicated his life to teaching baseball to youth. Visit his exciting info packed website: http://www.Learn-Youth-Baseball-Coaching.com

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Monday, 25 February 2013

Cheap Softball Bats - Tips to Help You Find the Best Deals

ByJack Griffith

With the baseball and softball seasons right around the corner, many players are looking for cheap softball bats and equipment.

Whether you're looking for practice bats or a tournament special, no one wants to pay more than they have to. Keep reading to find some suggestions for where to find cheap softball bats for your player or team.

Cheap Softball Bats Aren't Always Cheap

Of course, you can always start your search online. Trusted names like Miken, Easton, Rawlings, Wilson, DeMarini and more can be found via the internet.

However, you'll want to use caution when buying online. You may find a great price, but if the bat doesn't fit you, or doesn't fit your child, then maybe that great deal wasn't so great after all.

Some retailers are pretty good about returns, but it can be a real hassle to return a bat. You have to package it up again, take it to the post office or local ground delivery office. It's a lot of hassle that many people just don't get to. Then that cheap softball bat find isn't so cheap.

Worse, you're stuck with a piece of equipment that's going to sit in your closet taking up valuable space, until a few years from now it goes on your garage sale table for $1.

Why Not Try Your Local Sporting Goods Store First?

A good idea is to visit your local sporting goods store. You may not find cheap softball bats, but you do have an advantage locally that you won't find online.

You can try out several bats! See what you like the best, and what fits you or your child best.

And sometimes a local retailer will surprise you with special sales, resulting in cheap softball bats or other softball equipment.

Wooden Bats Versus Aluminum Bats

Did you know that Major League Baseball allows only wooden bats? If you have major league aspirations, then you'll want to use a wooden bat.

Wooden bats, however, are heavier and denser. They will not hit a ball as far, and require a lot more arm and wrist strength.

For this reason, most softball players like aluminum bats. These come in a wide variety of weights and lengths, and you'll be sure to find the one that meets your needs.

How to Fit a Bat Properly

Any bat will not do. You want to take into consideration the length and weight of the bat.

Set the bat tip on the ground. Let your arms hang down at your side. You want the top of the bat to reach about your wrist.

For children, this can vary depending upon the size of the child. For example, a 10 year old child will most likely need a bat that is in the neighborhood of 28 - 29 inches long, although if he is unusually tall or short, this will vary.

In addition, you'll want to look at cheap softball bats since youngsters tend to outgrow them.

Next is the weight of the bat. Take a gentle practice swing. Can you (or your child) swing it comfortably, or do you feel strain on your wrists? If so, try a lighter bat.

Bear in mind that a heavier bat has more power but if you're putting stress on your wrists to make a swing, you won't be hitting home runs. Instead you'll probably need a wrist splint!

A lighter bat means more speed, and thus more hitting power. A lighter bat also means better control, which can allow the player to hit the ball harder and farther.

Want to Avoid Sporting Goods Store Prices?

Okay, you've chosen a bat, now what?

Don't want to pay sporting goods store prices? Still looking for cheap softball bats? Why not take note of the bat you like and do a little comparison shopping online?

Many times you can find things online at much reduced prices. Do some browsing online. Enter your softball bat make and model number in the search engine and see what you can find.

Often times online retailers will offer better prices than the local stores along with additional discounts like free shipping, clearance prices, and even one-of-a-kind discounts. Some players have been able to find their chosen equipment at significant savings online.

Before you buy, search for a coupon. Many retailers have coupons available online, both for internet purchases and local buys. These coupons can often save as much as 25 - 50 percent!

With a little research and ingenuity, you can find cheap softball bats that will suit your players perfectly.

Jack loves family and home, and enjoys sharing his experiences with others. He has been writing for more than 25 years about topics that he finds interesting. To see more of his material, please go to Softball Sales

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Sunday, 24 February 2013

4 Outfield Drills For Softball

ByDennis McCurley

Playing softball can be a lot of fun. Winning at softball makes playing fun. One of the best ways to win a softball game is to make sure you score more runs than the other team. Yes this makes perfect sense but to accomplish this requires that your outfielders know exactly what to do in almost any situation.

There is only one way to ensure that your outfielders produce in a winning manner. This one way is to practice. There is an old saying that says, "practice makes perfect", but I totally disagree with that statement. I prefer to use one of my own, "perfect practice makes perfect". For you see if you practice but do things wrongly then when these things occur in a game you are more than likely to do the same thing wrong. Do your best to practice as perfectly as you can as you begin these four drills for outfielders in softball.

The first thing that needs to be practiced by any outfielder is the act of catching a fly ball. Yes this is an understatement but please bear with me. To be able to catch a fly ball the first thing that must be done is the outfielder must see the ball in the air. However, before he/she see the ball in the air it is imperative that your outfielder picks the ball up coming off the bat. Being able to to this means that the outfielder will be able to quickly determine where the ball is going and then have a good idea as to the best path to take to get to it.

I am sure you will agree that there is more to catching a fly ball than having it fall into the glove. Another type of hit ball that can be very difficult on any outfielder is the line drive. Here the ball is usually no more than ten feet off of the ground and usually is moving at a high rate of speed. Again being able to see the ball come off of the bat is essential to being able to catch the ball for the needed out. As a quick reaction that is usually required to get into position to catch a line drive picking up the ball as soon as possible is the key.

The next area that needs to be discussed is the ball that is a grounder that makes it way through the infield or is hit over the infield and then begin to roll along the ground. Here it is very important for the outfielder to get in front of the ball. If the ball is traveling straight at the player it is easier to get into the correct fielding position to make the play. Now then, if the ball is not moving directly at the outfielder he/she will have to run it down. With this type of play the fielder will have to be able to bend at the waist and knees to be low enough to pick up the ball before it rolls beneath the glove.

The last drill that needs to be completed is throwing the ball back to the infield. Here arm strength is not being questioned but baseball knowledge is. If no runner is on base and a ball is hit to the outfield that is not caught for an out the ball must be returned to the infield as soon as possible. It is important to never throw behind a runner. So if the batter takes a wide turn at first base do not throw to first. If you do this then the runner will be able to advance into scoring position by moving to second. If there is a runner on second and the outfielder has a strong arm then it is smart to try to make a plate at the plate. However, if a strong arm is not there then allow the run to score and do all you can to hold the batter to only a single.

If your outfielders can master these four drills then you are one step closer to limiting the number of runs your oppositions scores. Getting into position to make a play, whether the ball is hit into the air or own the ground, and knowing the correct base to throw the ball to is a very important part of the game. The only sure fire way to make this happen each and every time is to do your best to develop a mind set of perfect practice makes perfect. Once this is done and taken to heart you should be able to win more than you lose.

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Saturday, 23 February 2013

How to Strengthen Your Throw From the Outfield in Softball

Although the ball is larger and the bases are closer together, arm strength in playing softball is no less important than in playing baseball. Ironically, because everything involved with a softball field is smaller than the regular baseball field, arm strength for quickness is possibly of greater importance.

These four exercises will help build the muscle mass required to increase strength in the primary throwing muscles. This is in no way a total strength conditioning program, as the lower body, legs, also play a pivotal role in the overall process.

Arm Circles

To perform this exercise, stand with feet shoulder width apart, raise both arms to shoulder level height, begin rotating your arms forward in small circles for 15 seconds, then reverse your circles for 15 seconds. Drop your arms to your side and shake it out.

Perform 10 reps of arm circles daily, increasing your time duration 5 seconds daily until you reach maximum endurance, as with all exercises properly performed, the will let you know maximum performance.

This exercise will increase flexibility, balance and stamina and endurance of the rotator cuff muscles.

Exercise, Resistance or Surgical Bands

Any one of the above training aids will suffice for this exercise.

Attach the band to a stationary object, door, install a hook or whatever, as long as it's attached at least a foot above, and preferably higher, than your height.

Grasping the unattached end of the band, come to your plant position, left foot forward if right handed, right foot forward for lefties, your arm will be at shoulder height in the L position, hand close to ear.

From this position, using your arm and shoulders, pull the band forward as if you were completing your pitching motion, finishing with your hand at your opposite hip.

Jobe Exercise

This exercised is named after Frank Jobe, Los Angeles Dodgers Baseball Team Physician, and was originally created as a rehab exercise from an arm injury, but Nolan Ryan began using it as a regular strength exercise, and as they say, the rest is history.

To perform this exercise, stand feet shoulder width apart, hold a 1 - 3 Lb. weight in each hand, which are at your side. Slowly raise your arms straight out sideways, until your arms are at shoulder level, then slowly lower them back to your side.

Perform 3 sets of 10 reps each. As you gain strength you can either increase the number of reps you perform, or increase the amounts of the weight, but Do Not Exceed 5 Lb weights as it then begins to stress instead of strengthen the muscles.

Long Toss Exercise

Just as the name indicates, it involves playing catch and throwing the baseball farther distances as your strength increases. Begin this exercise throwing

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Friday, 22 February 2013

Youth Softball Bats

ByNicole Roberts

Just like every other piece of equipment, come in a number of varieties. There are different lengths, weights, and materials used, depending on your league. The size of bat you need will also be dependent on your strength. It is important that you choose the right bat so that you do not break the rules, and so you can have the best hitting power possible.

Softball bats may vary slightly whether you are playing the slow pitch or fast pitch version. They are the same in that they both prefer a bat length of 34 inches. The standard barrel size of the bats are also the same for both types of the game, at 2

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Thursday, 21 February 2013

Does a High Tech Fastpitch Softball Bat Make a Very Big Difference for the Team?

ByShophia Narra

When it comes to buying the right fastpitch softball bat for your daughter, there are many variables and price-points to consider. The low-end softball bats can be quite cheap by comparison to the higher end models, and it's hard to know what really makes the difference. Many parents when face with the decision of which bat to buy and how much to pay consider buying the cheaper bat, and if the daughter decides she loves the sport then they will invest in a better bat later on. This line of thought is understandable, but it's not the best way to approach the decision.

A high end bat, such as the Anderson RocketTech, Miken Icon, Easton Stealth, DeMarini CF4, Worth Mayhem, and Louisville Slugger Catalyst can cost anywhere from $175 to $300, where as a low-end bat can be had for around $20. But, the higher end bats to make such a dramatic change in scoring potential. Because of this, the decision to buy a cheaper bat until the player loves the sport may actually determine whether or not they actually do. Perhaps if she had had the high tech bat from the beginning she could have bit more line drives, actually gotten on base and made some home runs. This success at the plate will determine how much she loves the game.

Another common mistake parents make when buying their daughter a bat is to buy a bigger one than she currently needs, thinking that she'll grow into it and can use it for more seasons. Perhaps, yes, down the road she will grow into the bat. But the risk you run is turning her off from the sport because she can't manage her bat, can't score as well as she'd like, and then she'll never have the chance to grow into it because she won't still be playing. Id the bat you buy is too heavy she'll be an ineffective hitter and you will have defeated your whole point of investing in a quality bat. It's best to just get her the size she needs right now, and foster her growth so she really loves the sport.

These bats are not cheap, and it does seem like a huge amount of money to pay for sports equipment. But if you are serious, and your daughter is serious, then she will be most satisfied if she's scoring runs on a winning team. Yes, of course it does. If the other parents on the team are complaining it's too much money, talk with them and see if they would consider contributing $20 or more to a good quality team bat. This way all the players have access to a great bat, with a good sweet spot and a log of ping, one that will help them hit to the outfield. It's better the girls all share a premium bat that might be a little too long or slightly too heavy rather than get discourage swinging a dud of a cheap bat that fits just right.

High end fastpitch softball bats at West Coast. Anderson fastpitch bats, DeMarini fastpitch bats, Easton, Miken, Louisville Slugger, and more. Free shipping on fastpitch bats from West Coast.

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Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Softball Bat Review

ByZoltan Szucs

This is a review of a 26oz Worth Resmondo "World Series Edition (WSE)" Titan #759/800.

The criteria used in this review will be based on 8 categories; price, pop, distance, feel, sound, durability, looks, and sweetspot. This bat was brand new in wrapper and used at an indoor training facility due to cold weather. I will start the review with the only quantitative category and that is price. When it comes to price I don't have a problem with paying more for a piece of equipment if it is going to outperform others of a lesser price. The Ressy WSE retails at $299 pretty steep for your average player. I got the one being reviewed for $250 after buying in on ten of them with other guys around the U.S. So a $50 rebate is a pretty good deal as they say a penny saved is a penny earned.

When it comes to looks I could think of only one word when I pulled this stick out of the box and that was BEAUTIFUL. From the black to gray faded grip, to the white end cap and matte black finish the WSE provides a unique combination of intimidation and sexiness. I wasn't sure if I should just hang it on the wall and admire it or see how this bad boy really performed, I chose the latter. From first swing I was in shock of how hot this stick was.

When it comes to sound the first cut sounded like a shotgun exploding, the sound of this bat straight out of wrapper is unmatched by anything I have ever heard before. During the session I put about 100 swings on the bat and the crack of the ball off the bat progressively got louder and more forceful, it was music to my ears. I think pop and distance go hand in hand so I will put those together and since I was hitting indoors I can't get a true feeling of the distance. The pop on the WSE is amazing from swing one and just keeps getting better and better. Grounders and line-drives were missiles leaving the infield with incredible exit speeds and the ones I really got a hold of I would say would easily leave a 300 foot field. Wish I could have been outdoors to get a true distance but honestly I would say a masher would have no problem dropping 350 foot bombs consistently.

The sweetspot on the WSE is HUGEEEEEE covering the whole barrel of the bat and when you hit it dead on the ball just bounces off of it with a trampoline like effect. If you can't hit the sweetspot on this thing please choose another sport. The one ounce endload in the WSE makes the feel of this bat amazing and swinging through the zone effortless. The amount of speed you can get on your swing with the WSE is insane, bombs away. The only thing about this bat that worries me is durability. There have been many instances where people say that their WSE's have broke with less than 500 swings on it. After 100 swings my WSE has a small sand rattle to it which is normal for Worth bats and absolutely no webbing which is probably due to the matte finish. Only time will tell how mine will hold up but if it lasts 800 or more swings I will be thrilled.

Overall I am very impressed with the WSE and proud to say that I own one. I would almost give it 10's across the board. If price is a non issue go out and get this bat you are at a serious disadvantage if you don't have one!!

Overall Grading

Price: 7
Pop: 10
Distance: 10
Feel: 10
Sound: 10
Durability: 8
Looks: 10
Sweetspot: 10

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Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Hitting Drills For Fastpitch Softball Players

Hitting drills can be done by softball players effectively without having to waste time waiting around for busy coaches. Its is also important what type of bats are being used by the athlete's. Aluminum versus Composite.

Aluminum fastpitch bats and composite fastpitch bats have their pros and cons. Because fastpitch softball requires great bat speed and reaction time selecting the proper bat can mean the difference between striking out, laying down a bunt, getting a base hit or even hitting a home run.

Composite bats offer more advantages than aluminum bats these days, but cost more and lack durability. Composite bats also require attention and care to prevent damage.

Composite Bat Speed: Composite bats are easier to swing and can be more accurately controlled.
Aluminum Bat Speed: Aluminum bats are generally heavier than composite bats and less evenly balanced.
Composite Performance: Composite bats peak in performance once they have been properly broken in. A broken-in composite bat will outperform most aluminum bats.
Aluminum Performance: Aluminum bats maintain a steady performance throughout the life of the bat.
Composite Durability: Composite bats are fragile and batters must be conscious of weather conditions and proper use.
Aluminum Durability: Aluminum bats are very durable and require little attention.
Composite Cost: Composite bats vary greatly in cost, depending on materials used.
Aluminum Cost: Aluminum bats are less expensive than composite bats and do not require as much technology to produce.

With a type of bat in mind, now you can start gather hitting drills for your players. Some aspects of hitting to focus on could include Building The Swing, Visual Preparation and Game Adjustments. There are many types of drills to focus on the simple mechanics of hitting. Some use a hitting Tee, some will use wiffle balls and even the Soft Toss Drill where a ball is tossed in front of the hitter in line with the big toe allowing the hitter to focus on their technique instead of reading a pitch coming straight at them.

If you're looking to improve your bat speed or looking to increase your bat strength make sure you choose a bat that best fits your personal preference. Take some time to choose your bat. Take the time to select your hitting drills and get yourself set up for the drills that are focusing on the specific mechanics you are looking to improve and get to work! May all your swings come true. Have a great year!!

Highly effective hitting. How do you get the most out of your drills so your not wasting anyone's time. What ques do you use, what equipment do you use and what drills do you use. These are common questions coaches across the world ask themselves everyday. If your players don't hit the ball they don't score, if they don't score, they can't put point's on the board. If you're not putting points of the board your not going to win ball games. Hitting has to be done effectively with confidence.
http://www.shopsoftballutah.com

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Monday, 18 February 2013

Softball Pitching - 4 Steps To Great Mechanics

ByBecky Wittenburg

Because softball pitching requires one fluid motion, it is difficult to coach it in terms of fundamentals. However, pitchers need to understand the proper mechanics in order to develop their pitching skills. If a pitcher is struggling with her delivery, then breaking the pitching motion down into its fundamental elements will help isolate and fix the problem. The following tips will help coaches and pitchers establish a firm pitching foundation.

The Windmill Method

The most popular delivery in fastpitch softball is currently the windmill method. In this underhand pitch, the pitcher's arm starts in front of her body, winds back, completes a full circle, releases the ball at the hip, and then follows through.

The windmill is more than just an arm motion, however; it requires a long stride that utilizes the legs and torso to generate more power. Both speed and the shift of weight play an important part in executing the windmill effectively, so pitchers should practice the motion to develop a comfortable rhythm. Maximum velocity and accuracy will only occur if all of the movements are in sync.

The Fundamentals: Grip

In fastpitch softball pitching, the grip on the ball depends on the type of pitch being thrown. How the pitcher holds the ball will direct the rotation of the ball and the way the wind interacts with the seams, which will in turn determine how fast the ball travels. For example, to throw a four-seam fastball, the pitcher will hold the ball so the laces form a letter "C," then place her fingers across the "C." For a two-seam fastball, the pitcher will hold the ball so the laces form a "U." Her pointer and ring fingers will each rest along a seam and the middle finger will go in between the seams.

With either delivery, the middle three fingers will be on top of the ball, with the pinkie tucked underneath and the thumb on the side of the ball. The ball should be held securely in the fingers, not against the palm of the hand.

The Fundamentals: Stance

A pitcher's stance is the position she assumes before beginning her wind-up. It can vary from pitcher to pitcher, but a player should have a basic stance that is consistent and comfortable for her.

She should begin by holding the ball in her glove and standing up straight at the pitcher's mound. Her lead foot, or throwing-side foot, should be on the rubber with the toes extended over the front edge. The rear foot toes should touch the back of the rubber. Her front leg should be straight while the back leg is slightly bent, and the feet should be just a little closer than shoulder-width apart. The pitcher should square her shoulders toward home plate, keeping her weight on the balls of her feet.

At this point in a game, the pitcher would look to the catcher for the signal while slightly shifting her weight forward. She would then visualize her pitch, take a deep breath, and begin her wind-up.

Completing the Pitch

In order to properly execute the pitch, the pitcher needs to develop her wind-up, stride, arm movement, and follow-through. Once she is comfortable with her grip and stance, continue the pitching lesson by introducing the pitching motion. Players often become overwhelmed at first, but by starting with the basics, coaches can guarantee understanding before moving on to developing more advanced skills, like an effective change-up.

And if you'd like to see more free softball pitching drills and coaching tips, go here to watch a free video:

http://www.softball-spot.com

Becky Wittenburg is a softball coach, and the owner and publisher of Softball-Spot.com, the web's #1 resource for softball pitching drills, tips, and practice ideas for youth and high school coaches.

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Sunday, 17 February 2013

Softball First Base Mitt - Made for Girls That Know How to Catch

There are two positions on a fastpitch softball field that must catch every ball that comes to them. One, of course is the Catcher and the other is First Base. A first baseman understands how important it is to catch every ball that comes her way.

Most positions don't get the ball thrown to them much during a game. They are usually throwing the ball over to first base to get the batter out. That throw can come from any position on the field, even the outfield players. Shortstop sees a lot of hits to them. Second base sees several, left field and center see a few that get through the infield. Depending how good your pitcher is, the outfield may not see any balls the entire game.

But the first baseman will get a throw over to her on almost every play. That relates to a lot of - let's just say some less than accurate throws. Softball first base players have to catch the good throws at chest high, the way high throws over their head and even the bouncers in the dirt from the short stop or 3rd base when she got in a hurry and made a bad throw.

So, there is a special kind of glove made just for the first baseman. It is appropriately called a First base Mitt. First base mitts are similar in shape to the famous catchers mitt. It is more rounded in shape and has many features of a catchers mitt.

A softball first base mitt is shaped to help the first base player scoop up those bad throws in the dirt or at her shins - ouch!. The longer, deeper pocket helps to make the ball be caught in that deep pocket to alleviate some of the sting from a strong armed shortstop that is trying to throw out a lightning fast slapper.

That same mitt shape helps to snag balls that would normally be too high above her head. Even if she has to pull her foot off the bag to make that overthrown catch.

There are some features that are unique to fastpitch softball firstbase mitts. Some of the top manufacturers are now making the mitts especially for girls. They use finger stalls that are closer together and a little tighter so the mitt fits better on the female hand.

Another feature is that they are made of lighter materials. They still use top grade leather but some are using a mesh on the back to make them lighter. Others are using lighter weight leathers such as the now famous Kip leather.

Kip leather is very strong but lighter in weight than standard US steerhide. It also has a tighter grain which makes it smoother and more even. Many of your pro baseball players are using Kip leather in their custom gloves these days. Kip leather comes from younger steers and is usually harvested in Europe. Kip leather makes some very good fastpitch softball gloves and mitts.

Mesh on the back side of fastpitch gloves makes really good sense. It is usually really hot during softball season for one. So the mesh helps keep your hand cool. The mesh backed fastpitch softball gloves help air circulate better which helps the interior dry out faster. Keeping the interior of your softball glove dry will make it last longer, and it won't smell so bad.

Softball First Base Mitt.

Making a softball glove out of mesh on the back also tends to make it a little lighter which is always a good thing. Especially for girls fastpitch gloves. Girls play a very fast moving brand of softball and they need to be able to move the glove around quickly and easily. So mesh on the back of the glove makes great sense.

You can find out lots of good information on mesh backed fastpitch softball first base mitts and many other girls fastpitch gloves by visiting the link below.



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Saturday, 16 February 2013

5 Tips For Getting Better at Hitting a Softball

There comes a time in every athletes' life, they must admit the reflexes aren't what they used to be, the energy level is reduced and the muscles are sore after a workout, which at one time was more of a warm up activity. It's hard to admit, but you're past your prime and can not compete with the youngsters any longer.

However, that doesn't mean you can not satisfy that urge to compete as a weekend warrior and enjoy the camaraderie of team mates, both male and female, while indulging in your favorite beverage. The game of Slow Pitch Softball can be your answer to all your problems.

Slow pitch leagues, "over 50", Co-ed and several other divisions, exist in every town and city in every state and are mostly played on the weekends, in case the players require recuperating before returning to work Monday.

The game is more or less identical to baseball, with a few variances, and the slow speed and large size of the pitched ball makes hitting it extremely easy, but that is not always the case. Most former baseball and fast pitch softball players, have a different swing that slow pitch requires, and can be quite frustrating when you trickle a slow ground ball after taking a mighty swing.

In order to hit well in slow pitch softball, you must modify your swing. Here are a few tips which will help you develop a good swing for the game.

1. Softball bats are different in shape and length than baseball bats, both in the handle and the barrel size. Choosing the correct bat is, of course quite important, but the rule of thumb is "choose the largest bat you can still swing comfortably." If a 34" bat feels good, but you could go to the 35" with little trouble, go to the 35".

2. Most players will grip the bat at the bottom against the knob in order to create the most power. If choking up a bit feels better for you, do it. Remember, identical to baseball, the speed of the swing is more important to power than the weight of the bat.

3. The ideal softball swing is from a level cut or swing to a slight upper cut, which gives the ball a lift into the air, which is what power hitters want. This requires practice because there's a very fine line between hitting a towering home run blast and a high pop fly in the infield. A level swing will produce line drives and ground balls, which are ideal for less muscular power hitters.

4. Keep your head level and eyes on the ball. This is nothing new for former ball players, however, the flight and arc of the pitch is totally different from a baseball or fast pitch. It is quite natural for a player to pull their heads, taking the eyes off the target, as they mightily swing at the "balloon" approaching them. This results in hitting little dribblers back to the pitcher.

5. Patience, patience and patience. Again, baseball and fast pitch players were given a split second to determine if they would swing because of the speed the ball got to them. Watching and waiting for a high pitched ball, which will have a back spin if properly thrown, to reach you may seem to take forever. Controlling the urge to swing too early can be a monumental task for a normally anxious hitter.

These 5 tips, although not earth shattering, will make you a much better hitter in slow pitch softball. Practice these tips with the same work ethic you've always used and you'll be a star player once again, regardless of your age.

Jim Bain, former Minor league baseball player, who since retiring has dedicated his life to teaching baseball to youth, shares his advice on running baseball drills on his exciting info packed website: http://www.learn-youth-baseball-coaching.com

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Friday, 15 February 2013

Pink, Purple, Red, Blue - Colored Laces Make Custom Fastpitch Gloves Affordable

Every player wants her fastpitch glove to be a custom glove. But most parents can't really afford to shell out the extra bucks for a custom softball glove. Now here is a way to get your kid a custom glove without that extra hundred buck price tag.

Just about every softball glove manufacturer will offer some kind of custom glove matrix. Where you can choose the leather color, the type of leather - extra stiff, pre-broken in, lace colors, back and palm colors. Special embroidery, you name it. If you are willing to spend the money you can have just about any color/leather combination you can dream of.

Thing is, those really tricked out custom fastpitch gloves can seriously trick out your pocket book too. If you aren't careful, you could end up paying almost three times the normal cost of that glove. But it would be sweet though!

So what can the average parent out here do. You know, those with two or three maybe four kids playing ball, going to band camp, doing dance. Jeez the list goes on. I know, I was in that group for about 20 years.

A couple things are available for the average joe. The simplest is to call up your fastpitch glove vendor and see if they will change the lace color for you. Some even offer it as an option right on their website now. It's usually called something like Custom Colored Glove Lacing. Look for it or do a web search, it will probably show up.

Another great way is to order some colored laces that fit your glove and just re-lace your kid's glove yourself. It really isn't that tough to do. There are some good books on the subject too. Several glove forums offer good advice too. Just do another web search for 3/16 x 72 lace colors and you should find what you need. Most fielders gloves use 3/16 inch lace. Some catchers mitts will use 1/4 inch lace. Just do some checking before you order. I saw a black fastpitch glove with purple and it looks sharp. Another kid had a black catchers mitt done with red lace and wow is it a sharp looking mitt.

It usually takes 3-4 pieces of 72 inch long laces to do a complete glove. If you are new to lacing, you should probably get another extra one just to be sure. Some of the softball glove sites have charts to help you decide how much lace to order.

You could always order the lace and then have a professional fastpitch glove repair or restoration guy do the actual re-lace job for you. There are several online, just do a search for them.

Colored Laces Make Custom Fastpitch Gloves Affordable

So to keep your bottom line a little less scary, and have enough left over to get yourself a new fly fishing rod - do a quick web search for Custom Colored Glove Lacing and find some cool color choices for your kid's fastpitch glove. At your next tournament look around and see what colors look cool. Then get online and do a search for those 3/16 x 72 lace colors and give your kid an affordable custom fastpitch glove that no other kid has.

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Thursday, 14 February 2013

Should You Buy a 12 Inch Softball Glove or a 13 Inch Softball Glove?

To buy 12 inch softball glove or 13 inch softball glove. That is the question. Now, let's see if we can find an answer that works for everyone. This question comes up a lot on the forums and at the field. It seems no one knows what size girls softball gloves to buy. Let's take a look at the options.

Nearly every day I see a question about glove sizes. Girls softball gloves have evolved over the years and now there are so many options it sometimes is hard to make a choice.

Parents want to be sure they order the proper size for their daughters position and physical size. They also usually don't want to have to buy another one for a couple of years at least.

Fastpitch softball, or softball fastpitch as my friends up north call it is a really fast game. Not just the pitching. Although that is where the name came from of course. But the dynamics of the game of fastpitch softball are impressive. The shorter base paths, the closer pitching distance compared to baseball makes everything happen so much quicker and dynamically.

For that reason there are different glove sizes available now. Mainly they differ by position. Infielders tend to like a smaller glove and outfielders tend to like a longer glove. So what do you do if you play both?

Infield gloves come in a few styles, there are those for the middle infield usually in the 12.5-13 inch size with 12.75 or 13 being the most used size. This size is small enough for the player to have quick hand movement but large enough for them to catch the fly balls that are often hit to them.

There are a lot of players, such as 3rd base that prefer a shorter glove. That's where the 12 inch softball glove is used most. I do see some shortstops that use 12 inch gloves too. The 12 inch glove is still large enough to grab the full size - 12 inch softball, but smaller and lighter to help make those ultra fast plays off the bat. You know, when you are playing bunt and she drives a hard line drive right at your head.

Outfielders usually like the 13 inch glove, and some kids will choose an even bigger 14 inch glove. However, in my opinion that is too much glove for most female fastpitch softball players. A lot of men that play softball love that really big glove. But of course they usually have bigger hands to fit that large glove.

The larger 13 inch softball glove is truly multipurpose and works for infield and outfield. It is large enough to grab that over the head fly to deep center yet small enough to make those quick plays at 2nd base.

It also often times come down to the size of the kid that is going to use the glove. I have seen some 18 Gold players using 10.5 inch gloves. Now, that girl was kind of on the smaller size, so she had small hands. Thus she was comfortable with a really tiny glove.

For most kids starting out. Those that are 10 to 12 years of age, the 12 inch glove would be a very good choice. Searching for a 12 inch fastpitch glove should yield several choices. Be sure to look for one that is designed for females.

Female softball gloves or softball gloves for girls will have smaller finger stalls. They will be closer together and a little shorter. That makes the glove more manageable on the smaller hands. Several will have adjustable wrist straps to make snug fit on the wrist for comfort and control.

Find a ball glove made of Steerhide, Kip or just make sure it is real leather, that will last several years. She will likely grow out of it before it wears out. You may have to pay a little more for it, but it will be worth it in the long run.

If you need a beginners softball glove, go with the 12 inch softball glove. If you are looking for a step up or multi- use glove, go with the 13 inch softball glove.

The big question of should I buy a 12 inch softball glove or a 13 inch softball glove gets asked all the time. Parents ask coaches, they search out softball forums and even watch what other players are using. These are all great ideas. The bottom line is that it usually comes down to what the kid is most comfortable with. That will often depend on the size of the kid and age or level of play she is at. The older your child gets will help her form opinions of her own as well. Use the suggestions in this article to help form an informed decision. You can find many softball gloves and articles at http://www.BuyFastpitchGloves.com Now go play ball!

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Wednesday, 13 February 2013

How to Buy a Slow Pitch Softball Bat

ByBret Beaupain

When choosing to invest in a slow pitch softball bat (sometimes called "sticks"), there's a lot of things that you might like to consider... bat material, length, weight, weight distribution, and grip. You then need to correlate these items for your build and preferences because unfortunately slow pitch bats usually are not always one-size-fits-all. Let's go into the important points to determine if we can help demystify the process.

Bat Material

Slow pitch bats come basically in two unique materials, composite or metal. There are positives and negatives to each, however the majority of companies have moved most of their business to employing the composite materials for slow pitch softball. Normally the composites are usually the better alternative due to their durability, capability to perform in colder climates, along with the innovations in composite technology.

Bat Length

When it comes to slow pitch softball, almost all the sticks come in a 34-inch size which is the greatest length allowed by league policies. Nearly all slow pitch players don't need to be concerned in regards to smaller bat length unless you are really small and/or not heavy enough to swing the 34-inch. If that is the situation, the player may possibly consider choking up on the handle to essentially decrease the swing length.

Weight

Typically bat weights vary from 26 ounces to 30 ounces, but you may find some that exceed these regular ranges. The primary principle behind bat weight is that if the ball player is able to maintain a constant swing speed when utilizing both a light and heavy bat, then the batted-ball speed shall be highest for the heavier bat. The best results are obtained by swinging a heavier bat quicker, but it is something which most average players cannot do and still keep control over the bat while swinging it. If you must choose, we'd encourage employing a lighter weight bat due to the fact that swing speed in slow pitch is likely to rule a great deal more than bat weight for the reason that high swing speed is really what will flex the walls of the bat at ball-impact, thus enhancing the trampoline effect from the bat wall.

Note: For a reference point, I'm 5' 11" and 195 pounds. My greatest performance comes from using a 26 ounce bat. I have tried out bats up to 28 ounce, but those all frequently decrease my swing speed further than the gain produced with the heavier bat.

Weight Distribution

Bats for slow pitch softball can be bought in two distinctive weight distributions: balanced and end-loaded. These variations in weight distribution can lead to the sense of a light-weight or heavy swing weight of the bat. To get a little bit nerdy for you, it truly comes down to the location of the balance point (or center-of-mass) and the moment-of-inertia. Basically, the idea here is that the way the bat weight is distributed along the length of the bat can affect bat swing speed just as significantly as the varying overall bat weights. The nearer the bat's balance point is to the handle, the simpler it can be to swing and manage the bat barrel.

Look at two bats that are identical in length and have a 26-ounce weight. If you pick them up and swing them, you are able to undoubtedly distinguish the swing feel between the two. Bat 1 has a balance point that's 23 inches from the handle and Bat 2 has a balance point of 20.5 inches from the end of the handle. Bat 1 will have a much bigger moment of inertia (i.e. hit harder) than Bat 2 should they be swung with the same exact bat speed. However, as stated previously, the bat with the weight nearer to the handle is a lot easier to swing and control. The bat using the weight farther from the handle is more tricky to control and likely to lower your bat swing speed a result of the bigger moment of inertia. Let us reiterate here that bat speed governs in slow pitch because the high bat speed creates the trampoline effect of your bat walls when it strikes the softball.

There you have it, if you are a big bruiser and can swing an end-loaded bat fast and with excellent control, then that's the weight distribution for you. The majority of slow pitch players cannot do that and need to work with a balanced bat that should provide them maximum performance. Personally I favor a balanced bat.

Grip

The grip bats usually come in are leather or synthetic leather. Occasionally grips can come with cushioning to absorb shock. Grip selection tends not to be considered a factor in bat selection, especially given that if you don't like the grip you could change it out with a different one.

There it is, happy bat hunting!

Bret B. is an avid recreational softballer. If you are interested in tips and resources for slow pitch softball, please check out http://www.slowpitchhitting.com.

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