Saw it being used the other day. It hooks to a fence-adult holds two handles-ball travels on STRAIGHT line toward batter. They can only hit top half of ball because strings go through middle of ball. Coach said it was to teach level swing, but player pointed out balls do not usually come in on a straight line but at an angle.Seems like a waste of money to me-has anyone used it?
Gadgets and constraints can be useful similar to the way medicine is useful. Used under the supervision of a knowledgeable practioner/instructor, they can be good. Used without knowledge, the best gadgets, constraints or medicine can be counter productive. Having said that, I don't have much use for this gadget.
Ask if you want my suggestions for knowledge sources.
The best benefit it may have is that it gets parents to play with their kids when they may not be able to otherwise due to physical or space limitations.
In that way, it's better than their hit-around where the kid uses it alone like a tetherball.
P.S.: You can change the angle of flight by raising or lowering the point of attachment or the height of the operators hands. Makes it easier for an adult to emulate the angle of a kid pitching.
This could be a good product for kids to use to get a lot of swing reps in daily without chasing balls. Only thing I could see negative about it when I watched a video of this is, if a kid doesn't hit the ball just right, it only goes part way up the rope and stops. The kid then has to keep going up and finishing hitting it back to the person on the other end. This could get tiring and frustrating to a young kid.
Also, this device requires a second person.
Hitting aids aren't designed to teach kids the proper swing mechanics....hitting instructors and coaches will do this. Most hitting aids are designed to give a person the opportunity to go out and hit balls on their own when no one is around to pitch/soft toss to them.
The hitting aid I prefer is the Ultimate Hitting Machine. Kids can use this machine by themselves...hitting into a net in the backyard, garage, etc. It requires no batteries or electricity to operate, is very user friendly, and kids love to hit off it.
I have tried it. In general a bucket of wiffles is better than this training aid, but it can help with one issue: Kids 7 or 8 coming from tee-ball often drop the bat head way down as they start their swing and then come up at the ball, a technique that actually works pretty well off the tee but results in strikeouts and ground balls once they face live pitching. Well with this thing it's impossible to swing up at the ball so it's going to give them negative feedback until they learn to bring the bat straight to the ball.
"Coach said it was to teach level swing,"
Your son needs a new coach. Level to what? Hitters do not swing level. They swing parallel to their shoulders. They come up through the ball.
If this is the Derek Jeter endorsed product it's a waste of money. Jeter should be embarassed his name is on it.
Well if you get a wiffleball and two pieces of string, you can make yourself a Zip-Hit and save yourself a lot of $$$. The Zip-hit is also a piece of crap which will make your young ballplayer not swing correctly. But you do get my Hit and Run DVD with a Zip-Hit. I really should sue my ex partner for not paying me a dime for the 500,000 DVDs he got paid for.
I'm embarrassed to admit that I bought one of these things long before I knew any better.
My son, who was probably 6 at the time, summed up the major problem with this device...
"Dad, how am I supposed to hit the ball when it's got this rope going through the middle of it?"
"The best benefit it may have is that it gets parents to play with their kids when they may not be able to otherwise due to physical or space limitations."
You hit on an excellent point. At the end of the day, the parent child time spent together working toward a common goal is more important than the batting average.
"Level to what?"
"They swing parallel to their shoulders."
Assuming you mean parallel to shoulder rotation plane and assuming you mean good hitters , then yeah-again, exactly.
"They come up through the ball."
Up compared to what? How? Given you have tied the swing plane to the shoulders this seems to mandate postural adjustments. Can you discuss that? When does what start coming up in relation to what and is there any down to the swing and are up and down less than ideal terms to use descriptively for a swing anyway?
You know hitting. You know what I mean. I don't do pissing matches based on precise detail, terminology aand minutia. It's a waste of time.
The point of my post was for the poster to have concern in his mind to question the coach's hitting knowledge. For us to pee on each other over detail won't do the poster any benefit. Besides I find it boring. If you want to do hitting mechanics pissing matches try baseball-fever.
Didn't intend to take the discussion that direction at all. Note I largely agreed with you. I figure you and I probably agree and a discussion of terms and definitions between the two of us would be helpful to some dads. No offense intended. You aren't with that crew of idiots from HI and I have no big problem with anyone else. As to baseball-fever, the HI idiots had been allowed to pretty much take it over about the time I removed BF from my favorites list.