The Uplift Hitting Report analyzes an athlete's hitting captures for a given day, and provides a set of key measures and insights. This report not only includes many important kinematic metrics like X-Factor and Kinematic Sequence, it also highlights common movement patterns (and common mistakes) in the swing, which can provide the intelligence to inform coaching cues and corrective programming.
What's included in the report
The report is a summary of swings captured for a given athlete on a given day. That means that the report you get back will include a representation of processed captures, including the average and standard deviations for all of our computed metrics.
Note: if you notice that not all of an athlete's captures are included in a report, this report includes a summary representative analysis of swings that our system determined met certain quality standards. In addition, since much of the report analyzes the athlete's body position before, during, and after ball contact, if we don't detect a ball contact event in the capture, it won't be included in the report.
For more information and troubleshooting, read this.
Kinematic Sequence and X-Factor
The Kinematic Sequence and X-Factor sections at the top of the report highlight 2 of the most important indicators of an efficient pitching motion.
The “kinematic sequence” refers to the relationship between the pelvis, trunk, and arm velocities during the swing. To maximize energy transfer from the ground up to the arm we want to see the pelvis reach its peak angular velocity first, followed by the trunk, and lastly the arm. Deviations away from this pelvis-trunk-arm sequencing means, potentially, a less efficient swing.
This section also highlights the peak velocities of each of these segments compared against pro ranges, the speed gained as energy transferred from the pelvis to the torso, and a time series graph of the velocities of each segment over time.
X-Factor refers to the separation between the hips and shoulders during a swing. X-Factor refers to separation over the full swing movement, but often the most important portion of the swing to look at X-Factor is prior to the swing's follow-through, since this is when the athlete creates torque to transfer to power in their swing. The hip-shoulder separation that contributes to power in the swing is referred to as Stretch. Increasing Stretch can allow the athlete to leverage the spring-like properties of their muscles and fascia to store and release more energy as they hit the ball.
Some of the factors that can influence a hitter’s X-Factor include:
Their kinematic sequencing. If the athlete does not rotate their hips before their shoulders, they will likely have less separation between these two segments relative to if they rotated their hips first.
Their relaxation during the mid-phase of a swing. If a batter is very “tense”, they are likely excessively co-contracting their trunk musculature. This co-contraction will make it difficult for the batter to create a larger X-Factor, and will negatively impact their power generation.
Their strength and mobility. Some batters may need to address their strength or mobility in the gym in order to increase their X-Factor.
The solid line(s) on each graph represents the value of that metric (e.g. pelvis velocity or X-factor) across all swings in the report. The shaded band on each side of that line represents the standard deviation, which is a good indicator of variability between each swing. Click here to read more about movement variability in general, with more detailed examples.
Indicators in each phase of the swing
The following sections break the swing down into 2 phases, and highlight specific positions or patterns that could reduce the efficiency and power in the swing:
In each phase there are a number of "inefficiencies" that can be identified and reported on. While these are not necessarily always "bad" in isolation, they're highlighted for coaches to work with their pitchers on eliminating or improving specific patterns or movements that will improve their overall swing efficiency and power.
For example, one key movement coaches will often look for in their batters is Sway, an indication of the batter moving away from the pitcher during loading, which can reduce the efficiency and power of their swing. Elite batters do not shift their energy backward during loading. By highlighting the frequency with which your batter is swaying backward, the report can indicate an area where extra attention or programming may be beneficial.
Each of the indicators includes a description of the movement pattern we're looking for, a percentage of the swings in the report for which the inefficiency was detected, and a heat map showing when in the capture session these indicators occurred. The heat map can be useful to see if these inefficiencies occurred more in the beginning or end of a training session, which could be an indicator of warm-up or fatigue.
The trunk position at various points in the swing is also important for coaches to understand how stable the batter is keeping their torso through their swing. Note that pitch type and position will have an impact on the batter's trunk position.
This visual makes it easy to compare the lateral (side) and sagittal (front) bend at launch position, and when the hitter makes ball contact.
This hitting report provides a good summary of an athlete's swing and gives coaches and training staff some insight into which areas may be worth focusing on. Because this report is a snapshot of a day in time, you can compare a current report to a report in the past to track how specific training interventions have changed or improved the batter's movement over time.