They Laughed When I Launched the Hitting Performance Lab, But When I Uncovered The Truth…
You can eat tomato soup with a fork, knife, or spoon. But only one tool is most effective. Teaching hitters is the same. While there are hundreds of ways to teach hitting, there’s one more effective way. What is that? By applying human movement principles validated by REAL Science to hitting a ball. It’s like eating tomato soup with a spoon!
This is where Bill Nye the Science Guy meets Babe Ruth. Take the following Biblical story as an example, everyone agrees that Goliath should have crushed David. But what people don’t see was that David was an expert marksman with a slingshot. David never had to go toe-toe with Goliath. Why would he? David was outmatched in strength and size. But what David had on Goliath was a better technical skill that outmatched the giant’s size and strength. And that’s what the Hitting Performance Lab is all about!
About Joey Myers
My Name is Joey Myers, and I’m the founder of the Hitting Performance Lab. I played 4 years of Division-1 baseball at Fresno State from 2000-2003.
I’m a member of the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA), the International Youth and Conditioning Association (IYCA), and the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR). I’m also partnered with the Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA).
I’m a certified Youth Fitness Specialist (YFS) through the International Youth Conditioning Association (IYCA), Corrective Exercise Specialist (CES) through the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), and Vinyasa yoga instructor…AND, I’m also certified in the Functional Muscle Screen (FMS).
I’ve spent 15+ years in the corrective fitness field, and have a passionate curiosity to help other players – just like yours – dramatically improve performance through the science of human movement.
But it wasn’t so long ago that I was just as frustrated as your hitters are now. The stats I accumulated in my four years of Division One baseball at Fresno State (2000-2003) were completely sub-par:
.250 AVG, 9 homers, and 40 RBIs
I’m sure you’ll agree that these aren’t exactly impressive stats. I DON’T analyze thousands of hours of video footage. I DON’T spend 16 hours a day doing hitting lessons. I DON’T even have 30+ years of coaching experience!
“Yes, but Does this Stuff Really Work for Smaller Hitters?”
It’s results that count. Results with real hitters. Here are a handful of my hitters getting results:
- 98-lb 11yo hitting the ball 300-feet, multiple times,
- 95-pounder hitting their first dinger over 270-feet? (this is actually the brother of the above hitter but 2 years younger),
- 115-lb 11yo not only hitting the ball 300-feet multiple times, but hitting over 40 homers in one season…to ALL fields,
- 66-lb 11yo hitting the ball over 180-feet, and…
- A 115-lb 13yo hitting the ball 330-feet.
Here’s video of hitter #1 hitting a 300-foot double on a field with a 315-foot fence in Manteca, CA (observed by dad who played at Division-1 Chico State in the 90’s):
Also, hitter #2 above is the brother of this hitter.
Here are two separate videos of the 115-lb hitter above, both hitting 300-foot shots:
You can also CLICK HERE to view my video “Case Studies”, which is a mix of MLB analysis and young hitter swing snapshots, I’m currently working with.
By the way, these are just MY hitters. I have tens of thousands of coaches across the US that apply the same HPL principles to their hundreds of thousands of hitters, and get similar results. I’ve received multiple weekly emails from coaches/instructors/parents since 2013 that tell me so (some of those testimonials are below).
Just as Chas Pippitt of Baseball Rebellion so elegantly put it when given the challenge so many willfully ignorant knuckleheads ask, in some form, “So, you had how many hits in the Major Leagues???”…
“Just like Stephen Hawking, a world leader on black holes, I’ve never been to outer space…Just like Bill Belichick, I have never played in the NFL…Idan Ravin works with Chris Paul, Lebron James, Melo on basketball skill training…and he’s never even played COLLEGE ball…Just like Rudy Jaramillo, one of the top hitting coaches in the bigs ever, I have no MLB playing experience…Dave Duncan, widely considered one of the best pitching coaches ever…was a catcher.”
Also, CLICK HERE for a Chris O’Leary article titled “Do as they Did, Not as they Say”, addressing how Don Mattingly, Tony Gwynn, Mark McGwire, and Albert Pujols don’t teach the swing that they used.
I tell my hitters what’s real and what’s feel are totally different.
Dan Farnsworth from FanGraphs.com who does fine work in the area of proving and connecting effective mechanics to Sabermetrics. In this Dan Farnsworth article analyzing Robinson Cano’s swing, and how much of an affect his hitting coach Edgar Martinez had on it, Dan says:
“Of course, it remains to be seen how well he can work with players as a coach. Doing a thing and understanding a thing do not automatically qualify you to teach a thing.”
The bottom line is this…
It’s NOT how you study, but what you study that counts. We apply human movement principles that are validated by science to hitting a ball. Physicists…Biologists…Bio-mechanical Engineers…and Body Workers. For example, on earth, you’ll fall 100% of the time skydiving out of a plane right?! Because of Gravitational Forces! The rules to human movement NEVER change and remain constant.
“As to the methods there may be a million and then some, but principles are few. The man who grasps principles can successfully select his own methods. The man who tries methods, ignoring principles, is sure to have trouble.”
– RALPH WALDO EMERSON
I’ve had multiple hitters and families come to hit with me in Fresno, CA from:
- San Diego, CA,
- Los Angeles, CA,
- San Francisco & Bay Area, CA,
- Reno, NV,
- Boston, and
And the common thing they tell me is that nobody in their area is teaching hitting from a human movement validated by science perspective.
And CLICK HERE for those who are skeptical that the mechanics we teach here at HPL apply to fast-pitch, as well as baseball.
*What People are Saying…
Wow, I didn’t realize how researched this material actually was. I’m blown away how these simple movement patterns have been researched. I just ordered the Truth about explosive rotational power. Never in my 20 years have I seen someone or anyone for that matter actually explain movement/motion. They all claim to teach how the body works to swing a bat, but never have they explained it. They just claim to know how the body works and failed to explain it in their material.” – Shawn Bell (via email)
“My son is 12 and I have used some of the teaching the Hitting Performance Lab are posting on here and my son hit the ball over 280 feet several times already in the game not just practices and also hit the fence on the fly on 300 feet field, so what this guy is teaching works, a least for my son…He weighs about 110 now, but what I have noticed is how consistent his power has become thank you so much for your help, I played 10 years of professional baseball and I wish I could of used some of this advice.” – Sandy Arecena (via email)
“I got the video, and I enjoyed it. I have read your CLS book, and I have watched many of your videos on the Hitting Performance Lab website. I have been coaching baseball for many years at many different levels, and I must say that I like your approach using scientific knowledge and evidence. I have a PhD in mathematics, so I am all about using science as opposed to “bro-science” when thinking about baseball. I sometimes am ridiculed in my local area for continuously trying to learn about the game and not just adopting an old-school mentality. The perception is if I really knew what I was talking about, then I wouldn’t have to learn from people such as yourself.
And I have learned a lot from you. I have my son working on your CLS. We are working on showing the numbers, front shoulder down, and hide the hands, and I explain to him how we are stretching the one leg of the fascia X (front hip to back shoulder) while shortening the other leg of the X. I must confess, I was a “hips generate power” guy, so I developed good contact hitters, but not good power hitters. I have been searching for the right rotational ideas when it comes to the swing, and I thank you for opening my eyes to your knowledge.
Keep up the good work, and again, thank you.” – Nicholas Koban (via email)
“I read your book the other day. I have only been using some of your Facebook posts to help my daughter with her swing, without understanding the CLS. She used to squish the bug, but had a ton of bat speed and power. She now weight transfers but lost bat speed and power. Can’t figure out why. Well I read the book and we tried it today. Holy Sh!t!!! She was hitting around 68 EV with he squish bug, and jumped up to 75-78 regularly with weight transfer, but still felt like less power. I don’t have the tools to measure it anymore, but it has to be in the low 80’s. She used to be able to polish off 2 buckets of balls in a short time, 80-100 balls. Now after several swings, she needs to stop to recoup her energy, but says it feels like she’s not even swinging hard at all, and the ball is jumping. She did about 40 swings and was done. Made a believer out of me real quick. And she understands the technical terms and understands the concept real well.” – Robert Donovan (via Facebook)
“Hey Joey, I’m currently on my 4th ball player. I’ve had my 2 oldest involved with softball and my 2 younger guys with baseball. I’ve gotten the oldest 3 “professional” instruction with their swing mechanics and approach with mixed results. Often times, Id have to spend countless hours fixing a flaw they developed through the instruction. It became frustrating for everyone involved, and more importantly we lost precious developmental time. I decided to take a more hands on approach with my 4th and through my research stumbled on your book, we’re not big people so the title instantly grabbed my attention. I read it and was hooked, the principle driven, bio mechanical approach resonated with me. We seen alot of progress this past season working at the points from Catapult.” – John M. Meatte Jr. (via Email)
“I purchased this book last winter not only to teach myself but also my 5 year old son. I also purchased a Zepp’s Swing Tracker at the same time. While I read and began to understand the principles of this book, my son was in the basement establishing a baseline with the Zepp’s. His swing at 5 and 46 lbs was in the mid 20’s, good, bad, don’t know, don’t care. One month into utilizing the techniques in this book, his bat speed climbed to 42mph. True speed comes with consistency and continued practice will make it perfect, if there is such a thing. Now at 6 and and 47 lbs his bat speed is around 48 mph. Thank you for this book, I truly do believe it can give anyone a path to success, as long as they are open minded, read, and believe.” – Sean Laplant (via Facebook)
“I read the first edition of The Catapult Loading System a couple years ago. The only reason I did is because I have a Kindle Unlimited membership and the book came up in a search I did for baseball instruction or something. I have been coaching youth baseball since 2003, and I’m always looking to improve, gain knowledge, etc. I had zero expectations for this book. I actually thought I’d read a chapter and move on to another book. I figured this would be just another hitting book with all the same stuff. Instead, I couldn’t stop reading. For me, this book was packed full of great stuff that was new to me. I loved the links included in the Kindle version. I really enjoyed the stuff in the book that was not hitting related, too. I recommend this book all the time. It’s totally worth it even if you learn just a couple things or discover a few different ways to teach players.” – Jeff Murray (via Facebook)
“Thank you so much for your help through your book T.C.L.S. I am 13 and weigh around 105 and I finally hit my first home-run! (The field I was on was 226 in center and 175 in left and right). It went about 240+. I think it was going to go further but it hit the the fence on the field in front of it. It was the first time applying the new hitting mechanics when hitting live pitching and front toss. Though it was my only home-run that day, I had a few that hit the fence that were mainly line drives. I was mainly focusing on “showing the numbers” and ” hiding the hands” and then a few times trying a downward shoulder angle and hunching over during my swing (I think when I hit the home-run I had a downward shoulder angle).” – J.H. (via email)
“I tried just the new bat grip this past week you outlined in the book with the top pointer finger off the bat and the bottom hand holding like a butterfly. Saw results immediately. One of my weakest hitters hit his first HR and it was a grand salami! He was so pumped. After the game he said he focused on that grip and it worked! Thank you so much for the detail. You have gotten my attention.” – Josh Covarrubias (via email)
“Let me just say thank you. This book explains things that seemed unexplainable in the past. You just had to get it. Great stuff. I was a big push the knob back guy..not effective. Turning shoulder down squeezing top hand bottom 3. Who knew? Impact sounds like a shotgun now” – Mick Olandoh (via Facebook)
“I have read this book. A couple times to make sure I understand the science. It has changed my daughters life. Literally. She was always a talented hitter, but after applying the principles in the book and her understanding them, she’s even better. Her metrics have gotten her several offers from college coaches without ever seeing her play a single game. She will now go to school for free. Literally life changing.“– Robert Donovan (via Facebook)
“I like what you bring to the hitting world. You speak of things that are not normal hitting talks. The way the body works. I coach 12u Softball and Varsity Softball. First thing I have any hitter do is hit 5 their way. With small tweaks that I learned from catapult hitting systems. Minimum of 10-mph was added to exit velocity. What you say/teach works.” – Jared Rehm (via email)
“Screw those coaches. I didn’t believe the time frame of the catapult system. My son at 10 (90 lbs) is highly coach-able. I taught him the system in February and he hit well during the season but could only hit the ball around 180′. Then all of a sudden around June he started killing the ball. He was hitting home runs every game and hit a ball at least 250′. Keep going. You are helping young players.
I like getting your emails. Thanks” – Michael Parillo (via email)
“Thank you Coach! Your stuff is great! My son got his first home run 2 weeks after reading your book. Keeps getting more and more distance now.” – Michael Roberson Jr. (via email)
“Hey bud…Jayden had his best batting practice ever last night. Hit at least 9 balls around 300-feet or farther. I’m so happy with his progress so far. You are truly an amazing coach and I appreciate everything you have done for Jayden. I know he still has a long ways to go and he will keep working with you to get there. Thanks again brotha.” – Sal Mandel (via text message, 12yo son is about 115-lbs)
“I use the system to teach my son and he is 4’11 67 pound 10 year old. Meaning he is super skinny and very tall. He hit one in tryouts yesterday 250 in the air. I was in center field shagging balls. It’s real. It happens.” – Jonathon Subia (via Facebook comment)
“Want to give a big thanks to Joey Myers – Hitting Performance Lab. I’ve read a few of your books, great stuff. My son changed his swing in the off season. Now he leads batting average, homeruns, rbi’s. By the way,we played in a wooden bat tournament. One of two kids to homer with a wood bat. Thanks again.” – Joe Harris (via Facebook)
“I changed my 10yr old to this style midway through the season. He was batting .320 no HRs! Last 30 games he batted .560 as a righty and .584 as a lefty with 5 HRs! He plays major ball! The difference it made with him was fun to watch!!!” – Jack A. Martin (via Facebook)
“I’ve been incorporating some of your thoughts into my sons routine. He’s 5’1 and about 110lbs. He’s gone from hitting his first HR over 4 weeks ago to 6 in the last two tournament weekends. I’m talking absolute seeds and not just floaters. He’s moved from the bottom of the lineup to batting second on one of the best 12u teams in the state of Georgia. Thanks for helping out guys like me.” – Brent Rouse (via email)
“Hey Joey, first, thanks for the course on hitting. My 12 year old has always been a solid hitter but after working the PPD stuff he has started hitting the ball over the fence on the big field at 315 ft to center. It has taken a few months work but well worth it, as he is seeing the results of the work and his teammates and coaches on his new travel team are amazed at the bombs flying out there. He’s 5’3 and 120 pounds. I think the key has been getting low and turning the numbers and releasing. He always had trouble with the low strike, and he’s stoked to now be on plane for that one as well now.” – Greg Del Mar (via email)
“Just want to say thank you. My son who is 14, 5’6” and maybe 120lbs is really benefiting from your drills. We modified his batting swing during this past off-season, per your instructions, and have definitely seen the power go up. He is a lefty that used to hit a lot of singles to opposite field. Now we are seeing doubles, triples, and 2 HR’s so far early in our season…to right field. He was never a pull hitter, but now is able to go that way with power while still going to left with a pitch. Thanks!” – Greg Uehling (via email)
“My 70-pound 11 year old hit one over 200 fence today. Joey studies what the best do and uses research to back it up. If you don’t agree with him that’s fine, teach to swing down and through and read Charlie Lau like I did as a kid. My 75lb son is learning to hit in the air and can hit 3x his body-weight in distance.” – Brandon Lewis (via Twitter & Facebook)
“I ordered the book and read it in 1 afternoon. My son is 8 years old and weights 65 pounds. He has always been a great contract hitter but little to no power. I have worked with him on his grip and finger pressure, and his load and hiding his hands and he hit three off the fence which is 175 feet where we play. That is a big improvement from just being able to get the ball over the infielders to driving it off the fence. Great book, easy read.” – Mathew Payne (via Facebook)
“I just got done with a practice where two 65 lb 7 and 8 yr olds can hit over 150 ft. Bat speed baby.” – Matt Gardner (via Facebook)
“Finished the book a few weeks ago. Ideas are backed by Zepp measurement. Real numbers no smoke and mirrors. Started applying to practices for my 7 and 10 year old. Already see more consistent ball flight and increase in bat speed. Thanks Joey” – Guillermo Garcia (via Facebook)
“I changed my 10yr old to this style midway through the season. He was batting .320 no HRs! Last 30 games he batted .560 as a righty and .584 as a lefty with 5 HRs! He plays major ball! The difference it made with him was fun to watch!!!” – Jack A. Martin (via Facebook)
“Hey coach, even with Mia still hitting with her hands near hear head, Mia in a 3 game span, hit 3 home runs over the fence and a stand up double, three singles and four walks. Only made one out, a shot down first. She never had a series of games like this an especially playing with girls that are this much older. Mia is able to play in 12 and under, but she is playing in the high school division. Our sights are getting ready for October 4 and 5. That is when we go to the U of Florida camp. Their assistant coach has called Mia’s coach twice in the past week and wants us to call him this week. Let keep on course and work hard, thanks so much for all your help coach.” – Primo Buffano (via email)
“You’re the first I’ve seen to successfully articulate and adopt human movement into anything practical. What you’ve put together is very impressive. Most of what I’ve come across, even from those in the profession that understand human movement are assessment methods and tools to analyze movement and posture only to sell a few methods to correct dysfunction issues. Few are willing or able to explain human movement the way you have. These principles are the key for both performance and injury management. I appreciate the time and effort you put in to help those looking to perfect their craft and for those of us out their trying to help them.” – H. Orlando James
“Love your stuff. Your system turned a unsure, very-bottom-of-the-order 12U baseball player into a #3-in-the-order-all-season confident 13U hitter…” – Bruce Bergen (via email)
“Your new videos are awesome. Your product is becoming one of the best on the internet for sure!” – Andy Rando (via email)
“I first bought Jaime Cevallos book last spring that led me to Baseball Rebellion then to you. Your presentation style is great. My older son clicked with the 2 parts to the swing rather than all the pieces of the puzzle drills. My other son is two years younger and saw powerful results in just a few drills.” – Corey Mir (via email)
“F$%* you are really informed Joey…I’d say you are better at being a swing coach now than you ever were as a hitter…..meaning you were top notch then but now you are at hall of fame level stuff!!” – Rob Suelflohn (via email)
“I’m 59 years old and still play slow pitch league and tournament ball. I have occasional power and am not a big guy at 5’9 and 180 lbs. It’s always driven me crazy when I’d drive the ball deep once in awhile only. I’ve spent 5 years working on a tee and doing internet research, but really there has not been much improvement. Then I took the course. Yesterday in batting practice, I was destroying the ball to all fields 90% of the time. The guys were gasping as the ball left my bat with a sick sound. The corrections I have made to my swing using your course are FINALLY allowing me to be the hitter I knew that I could be! Thanks Joey.” – Russ Lederman (via email)
“Big fan of the catapult system. Colin is killing it! As you have pointed out it naturally stops arm barring additional benefit for Colin it has helped with his timing allowing the ball to travel deeper. 2 Grand Slams this past weekend in Cooperstown NY tournament.” – Chad Casamento (via email)
“Great job Joey! I have been replaying so many swings during this year’s playoffs. After watching your videos and buying the truth videos i am all in. You can replay any of Ortiz’s swings and they all are the same right now. He is a man amongst boys this postseason. What you are teaching is so abundant in MLB but not amongst the youngsters and most coaches. Keep up the good work man!” – Fred Holdsworth (via email)
“13 year pro ball player here. I just wanted to say how much i enjoy your videos/emails and I couldn’t agree more with the mechanics and techniques that you teach. There is so many concepts to hitting out there that are being taught, yet i feel like you’re on the right track to unlocking what it takes physically & mechanically to translate what the best in the world are doing every day. Unfortunately for me the science has come too late in my career as i approach the light at the end of my “tunnel”. Keep up the great work.” – YouTube Username: TGARCIA247
“It may take some time but the rest of the world will eventually come around to understanding that with hitting the simple movements we are trying to explore and teach are the best. I love the fact that Hitting Performance Lab uses great MLB hitters, past and present, to prove that these ideas will work, are working, and have always worked. Keep it up Joey, you have me completely converted. The proof is in the hitters we work with. Many of mine are starting achieve exit velocities that they never thought possible. Averages are up, power is up. I have three girls who will be playing D1, 6 playing D2, 2 going to Juco’s this next fall and one younger girl attending several D1 camps this month. Thanks to you for doing the science and providing convincing evidence. Keep up all the good work.” – Ronny Weber (via email)
“The first time I read your book the catapult system, I have to admit, I was a little underwhelmed. I thought there was a lot of fluff for just a couple principles. There was a few nuggets there that made me think I should give it another try. I saw some of your videos on your website and I started to kinda get a few more nuggets. I tried what I thought a few of your principles with my son and I was unimpressed because I think I didn’t get it and kinda started thinking I got ripped off by your book. I think it was partially because I was being closed minded and partially the information was a bit over my head as I’m a fan of baseball but not a student of the game. (I believe I am becoming a student)
So I started listening to other hitting gurus, some of which echo parts of your system (unfortunately not the whole, they are getting there) and I started watching videos of some of these MLB guys who kind of embodied your system and I started picking up on things.
Well, I picked up your book about on the “Ugly Truth About Hitting Ground Balls”. Let me say, I should have started with that book. It may be a small book but its awesome, has a lot more information than I expected and so simple and easy to understand. Plus, it made a lot of sense. (truth always does)
So I decided to reread the Catapult System book again, highlighting points as I went along. It as if the skies opened up to me, I understood what you were trying to tell me before and it all makes sense. It just started to click for me. The book, coupled with your videos, helped me properly communicate your principles, which I didn’t understand before but I understood now, to my son who was confused the first time I tried it out when I didn’t fully understand, now understands what I am talking about and the results so far after definitely in the right direction.
I’m introducing these principles little by little but he is getting it and it is beautiful! He is a big boy for his age, a power hitter for his team but he started to slump during the Dixie Youth World Series (prior to me implementing your principles) yesterday was our first real practice where I started implementing a few of these principles and the results were line drives in the deep outfield and we are not done yet! I am confident and optimistic about his swing the more we work at adding your method to his swing. Please forgive my ignorance and close mindedness. Thank you so much for this information and your continued discoveries. I was blind but now I see!” – Tony Ford (via Facebook DM)
*DISCLAIMER: As you can see, I have tiny hitters, along with other coaches, weighing between 60 to 135-pounds tripling their bodyweight in batted ball distance (these are mostly baseball case studies – the girls tend to double theirs). Some take 2.5 years to get predictable with it, whereas before they do it “every once in awhile”. Other hitters, although rare, achieve this in 6 to 12-months. It depends on good old fashion effort, work ethic, and the athlete’s ‘learn-ability’.
I encourage my hitters to work hard on the things we go over, and to keep on trying even after hitting major obstacles. Most young hitters don’t do that. They just show up for a lesson or gather information and “get ready” to work…or they throw in the towel and quit at the first bump in the road. It took a lot of hard work for my hitters to start seeing favorable hitting outcomes. Interestingly, it was the work with my hitters that gave me the inspiration to write this book.
The bottom line is, I have no idea what your results may or may not be. And it’s not my place to try to predict that. Your success is up to you, as always.