Improve Your Baseball Hitting Power With the TRX Rip Trainer

February 19, 2013 | Pete Holman

Ever wonder how small baseball players like Seattle Mariners second baseman Dustin Ackley (190 pounds) can smash the ball out of the park? Ackley may not look physically imposing, but he has the perfect balance of strength, power, mobility and speed that is needed to forcefully swing a bat.

Dustin Ackley Rip

Dustin Ackley on the Rip Trainer

Regardless of how "natural" your swing is, you can develop your hitting power with proper training. The TRX Rip Trainer is an ideal tool for this, because you can perform exercises that mirror swinging a bat. Training in a similar movement pattern will increase strength, power, balance, mobility and coordination in the same muscles that you use when you're at the plate. (See our review of Rip Trainer.)

Working these muscles with the Rip Trainer will also help prevent injury. A baseball swing is a violent movement. Strong muscles on both sides of the body help decelerate the bat and reduce the amount of stress placed on your body.

So, next time you hit the weight room, grab a Rip Trainer and do the following three exercises. Perform them two to three times each week.

Rip Stack

This exercise develops a "rock solid" core for enhanced power and durability throughout the season. Developing maximal core strength is an integral part of power production and should not be neglected. "Maximal strength is the critical quality that underpins the ability to develop high power outputs in a variety of sporting movements." [1]

  • Stand sideways to the anchor with your feet in a parallel stance
  • Rotate your hips, spine and shoulders as a "cylinder" away from the anchor point while holding the bar perpendicular to your body
  • Hold the bar at the end range for 10 seconds, rest for 3 seconds and repeat

Sets/Reps: 2-3x3 each side

Rip Rotation

The Rip Rotation is designed to increase mobility in the ankles and hips, while activating the core. Mobility allows for increased range of motion and fluidity through multiple joints. Without proper mobility, speed is diminished and injuries are more likely to occur.

  • Stand sideways to the anchor with your feet in a parallel stance
  • Rotate your hips, spine and shoulders as a "cylinder" away from the anchor point, while holding the bar perpendicular to your body
  • Control the recoil allowing your "cylinder" to rotate back toward the anchor
  • Repeat with an aggressive concentric contraction and a slow and controlled eccentric contraction back toward the anchor

Sets/Reps: 2-3x8-12 each side

Rip Samurai Strike With Step

The final exercise in this series is a continuation of the Rip Rotation with the addition of a striking motion (a simultaneous push and pull on the bar) to accelerate the bar end and produce greater velocity. The added step is designed to maximize rear hip stability and power. Once this movement is fluid and controlled, start performing it at high speed. Training with lighter loads in a ballistic fashion is used to optimize the rate of force development and overall power output.[2]

  • Stand sideways to the anchor with your feet in a parallel stance
  • Rotate your hips, spine and shoulders as a "cylinder" away from the anchor point
  • Simultaneously push with your hand closest to the resistance cord and pull with your opposite hand
  • Step forward six to 12 inches with your lead leg while striking

Sets/Reps: 2-3x8-12 each side

References

[1] Baker D., "Comparison of upper-body strength and power between professional and college-aged rugby league players." Journal of Strength Conditioning Research. 15: 30-35, 2001.

[2] Cormie P., McGuigan MR., and Newton RU. "Developing maximal neuromuscular power, Part 2: Training considerations for improving maximal power production." Sports Med. 41: 125-146, 2011.

Pete Holman
- Pete Holman is a physical therapist, certified strength and conditioning specialist and former U.S. National Taekwondo champion. As the Director of Rip Training at TRX,...
Pete Holman
- Pete Holman is a physical therapist, certified strength and conditioning specialist and former U.S. National Taekwondo champion. As the Director of Rip Training at TRX,...
Must See
Skylar Diggins Attacks the Off-Season On and Off the Court
Views: 6,471,296
Why NFL Wide Receiver DeSean Jackson Counts His Blessings
Views: 5,996,439
Dwight Howard Stays in the Gym All Night
Views: 4,779,213

Featured Videos

A Day in the Life of NBA D-League Star Seth Curry Views: 66,647
Kevin Love's In-Season Basketball Workout Views: 3,167
Eastbay Path to the Pros Episode 1: Introducing the Players Views: 20,470
Load More

Resources

STACK Fitness

Everything you need to be fitter than ever

STACK Conditioning

Sport-specific conditioning programs

Coaches and Trainers

Tips and advice for coaches and trainers

Magazine

Latest issues of STACK Magazine

STACK 4W

Women's sports workout, nutrition and lifestyle advice

Gamer

Gaming, entertainment and tech news

Basic Training

Military-style training for athletes

News

Find the latest news relevant to athletes

Most Popular Videos

STACK Fitness Weekly: How To Do a Muscle-Up
Views: 778,488
Greg Nixon's Hill Training Program
Views: 705,633
Roy Hibbert 540 lbs Deadlift
Views: 1,559,831
How Greg Nixon Converts Strength to Speed
Views: 960,874
Dribbling Drills for Tighter Handles
Views: 4,329,250

Load More
More Cool Stuff You'll Like

Use Sled Pushes to Increase Speed, Strength and Power

Sled Pushes may be the most dreaded exercises in any training facility. There are few exercises that can get your heart rate up and challenge your...

Build Muscle With the 2-Second Pause Workout Program

3 Habits of Highly Successful Coaches

Train Like a Pro: James Harden's Basketball Maintenance Workout

Add Surprise Sets for a Great Workout Finisher

Train Like a Pro: Henrik Zetterberg's Hockey Strength Workout

Train Like a Pro: Julio Jones 3-Day Sandbag Strength Program

3 Keys to Better Softball Workouts

Speed Drill of the Day: Reverse Lunges

Train Like a Pro: Los Angeles Lakers Strength Training Program

Evan Longoria's Off-Season Strength and Resistance Workout

How You Can Olympic Lift With an Injury

Speed Drill of the Day: Weighted Arm Swings

The 4 Best and Worst Cable Machine Exercises

8-Exercise Advanced Chest and Back Workout

Build Athletic Strength with the Playground Sandbag Workout

Not Making Bench Press Gains? Try These Strategies

Abby Wambach's Strength and Speed Workout

How to Use the Pallof Press for an Iron Core

3 Tips to Blast Through Training Plateaus

Use Wave Loading to Take Your Strength to the Next Level

Bicep Curl Grip Guide: How Hand Placement Changes the Exercise

Train Like a Pro: Baseball Strength Workout Program

2 Brutal 10-Minute Workouts That Deliver Serious Results

Paul Rabil's Powerful Rotational Strength Workout

How to Recover From a Soccer Game or Workout

Get Faster to Pitch Harder

Train Like a Pro: MLS Soccer Strength Program

Build Strong Legs with the Leg Press Lockdown Workout

5 Quick Workout Fixes for Faster Muscle Growth

3 Reasons Why You Should Do Full-Body Workouts

The Un-Liftable Inch Dumbbell: Can You Handle Its Challenge?

Kevin Love's In-Season Workout

Abby Wambach's Soccer Power Workout

4 Tips for Reducing Deadlift Back Pain

3 Keys to a Solid Squat Setup

The Top 10 Mistakes Athletes Make in the Weight Room

Build Bulletproof Chest Strength With This Unconventional Method

Is It Too Soon for Olympic Lifts?

Increase Athletic Strength with Rotational Bodyweight Training

Tobin Heath's Powerful Leg Workout

Build a Strong Upper Body With These Landmine Exercises

Todd Durkin's Complete Football Strength Training Program

Jump Higher After a Month With These 3 Exercises

Get Faster With This Weightlifting Technique

Train Like a Pro: Dustin Pedroia's Baseball Power Workout