Softball is really a cool and fun sport, but playing is not that easy because you need to have the right fundamentals and softball bat to nail it down. Fastpitch softball bats either come in one-piece or two-piece design in terms of handle or structure. Throughout the entire design, one-piece softball bats have one material, that is stronger and stiffer with little flex as possible. Two-piece softball bats have a separate handle piece from the barrel, allowing flexing at the point of contact to create a trampoline effect off the barrel and causing less vibration.
Fastpitch softball bats are either made of alloy, composite or hybrid. Alloy softball bats are usually made of aluminum one-piece design or it can be aluminum mixed with other types of metals, making it more stronger. These alloy softball bats have stronger, thinner and more responsive barrel walls. On the other hand, composite softball bats are made out of carbon fiber, graphite, and fiberglass mixture. Hybrid softball bats have alloy barrels bonded with composite handles, making the handles lighter and allowing the alloy barrel to be made longer than the traditional type. Fastpitch softball leagues are governed by USSSA, ISA, or NSA and rules using a higher performance softball bat exist, such as adherence to 100+ mph batted-ball speed standard for USSSA approved fastpitch bats, or 98 mph batted-ball speed standard for NSA.
Softball players must know the fundamentals of a good hitter such as right grip, hand position, stance, stride, swing, contact and follow-through. The hitter must apply pressure with the fingers and not the palms when gripping the softball bat. When it comes to hand position, your hands should start close to the body about 3 to 4 inches in front of your chest, between your shoulders, with elbows down and shoulders both free of tension. For the proper stance, you should position yourself in the center of the batter’s box for enabling swinging at pitches all over the strike area, and your feet must be parallel to the direction of the home plate pointing and digging around your shoulder width apart. Move your front foot for the proper stride for establishing a good momentum into the pitch, and your stride shouldn’t be more than eight inches. Most hitters cock their hips, which is an inward turning of the front hip, and making some movements with the hands. The swing starts with the hips and leg, and the softball hitter pushes off the ball of the back part of the foot as the softball come to approach the plate.
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