Rings For Swings

There is no better way to train for the swing than to use gymnastics rings.  I agree with Mickey Mantle, who said, "In baseball, the real secret of power is the strength you have in your wrists, forearms, and shoulders."  If that's true, the next question becomes, "How can we train them in such a way that not only avoids injury, but actually makes your joints more resilient?"

The answer to that question is unequivocally gymnastics rings.  They promote more hanging, and humans need to hang.  It's healing.  Dr. John M. Kirsch was a surgeon for thirty years and stopped his practice when he noticed that most patients would get better simply by hanging.  Kirsch recommends you hang from a bar, but I think gymnastics rings, because of they offer more freedom of the wrist, are much healthier for the joints.  

You see, the key to training for the baseball swing is to be as easy on your joints as possible.  The swing has already done a lot of damage.  You don't want to exacerbate that damage in training.  Also, the cartilage around the joints aren't like muscle.  They don't rebuild very well after damage.  So, with joints, they're pretty much wearing down from day one.  

Trainers out there don't seem to realize this.  Maybe they're too young, and too eager to grow their following online.  If they can post a video of some strong young kids doing a one-rep maxi with an impressive load, what's it matter if the kid suffers a knee injury three years in the future.  

It's really sad when I see the training kids are being put through.  I'm gonna say it since nobody else is: If you can't do basic movements with ease - like a bridge, a dip on rings, pull ups on rings, a pistol squat, a twisted half moon, or any other exercises that prove you have a modicum of command over your mobility and body control - you have no business picking up weights at all.

This shouldn't be a bummer.  It's going to feel much better to put the things that are most important at the forefront of your training.  Not including weights may seem like your are making training less fun at first, but I think you'll learn to have much better mind muscle connection and you'll be living in a body that is much healthier.  

I am not affiliated with this company in any way but these are the rings I recommend.  Please let us know how your progress is coming on the rings!

1 comment

  • David Parlet

    Very Impressive. You’re very skilled and in fantastic physical condition. I agree with you very much on how multiple body movements / involvements that require strength and stabilization are SO much better than just static resistance. I agree 100% with the shoulders, triceps, forearms and hands as primary sources of power for the swing. And Obviously and of course the core is essential. I love the different twists and contractions that are being made… much like an isometric exercise but with movements. I had a twelve year old boy come to me nearly 20 years ago who had been doing gymnastics since he was five years old. The boy had as wonderful a physique as I had ever seen on a youngster. Very developed shoulders, forearms and calves. Unfortunately his gymnastics days were looking to be coming to an end do to the time commitment but more importantly his genetic makeup. His parents felt his future was very limited in that sport and were looking to baseball to fill that void. He came to me in early spring just before the Little League season started. As a ten and eleven year old he never batted over .125-.150 and with absolutely no power. He literally was clueless in the game. This totally surprised me when I first met him based on looking at him. However, seeing his swing off a tee and soft toss I totally understood why. So I broke him down to isolation drills and literally built his swing from the ground up. Kneeling, sitting on a ball and using one handed drills. His forearm strength was phenomenal for his age as was his hand eye once the swing began to work in sync. As the spring and summer progressed, so did this boys ability to make contact and do so with power. He had electric bat speed as well and strong lower half balance. This boy came literally came out of no where and went on tho have a very successful HS career and opportunities to play in college but choose not to. To this day, I am Very certain that his prior gymnastic abilities & strength played a crucial part in his quick development and success that spring and that continued through his HS playing days. He often told me that he still stretched and continued to do body weight resistant movements he learned in gymnastics to keep his conditioning intact. AND NO weights at team lifts.

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