Englishbey Performance Profile picture
-1st Round Pick 1972 (Houston Astros)/ -Instagram: senglishbeyperformance - Functional Movement Program: https://t.co/quSrk4ONmq
30 Jul
The Simone Biles situation has obviously generated much discussion. Quite a few have characterized her decision not to perform as heroic. Others have referred to her as a "coward" or worse, as a "selfish sociopath." I think all of the above characterizations are wrong.
Nor do they really help at all in explaining what HER mindset ACTUALLY was in coming to the decision to not compete.
Her own words as regards trying to explain her decision, were, from my vantage point, not all that helpful. This is not a criticism. As I have said many times, athletes are not typically very adept at explaining the what, why, and how, they actually do what they do.
Read 34 tweets
27 Jul
Ok. Back to hitting. Here's a good clip of Brantley exemplifying a no. of things I have explained in detail [on my website and via demos of me doing these things].

1] Stretching the lead side [arm/shoulder/contracting pectoralis/serratus] "against" a "rigid" trunk [ no counter-rotation] and against the stride, i.e., these loading actions are reactions to the center mass moving forward.
2] Note the downward displacement of the head from start to full heel plant. Why? Subtle hip flexion--what I describe as "sitting."
Read 9 tweets
23 Jul
More thoughts on the genetics vs. environment question. Going back [about 20 yrs] to when I first considered working as a hitting instructor. I had a very basic question: Can you actually teach hitters? It was my first question. And why would it not be?
After all, I grew up in an age wherein we learned via what I have described as "disorganized baseball." Meaning that there were ZERO select teams. Nor were their these people called "hitting instructors." Nor was there yr. round baseball.
If for know other reasons [in Tx.] back then no football coach would allow good looking young athletes to NOT play football. HALE No!!
Read 19 tweets
23 Jul
" Back leg is is not the cause but is the effect of other body movement." Of course. And I have done a number of posts here explaining this in some detail, i.e., the "kick back" is a "resultant" that is a function of certain postural/rotational dynamics and also pitch location.
I'll add that the players talking on the clip is a typical ex. of "the action-perception gap", i.e., what you may THINK [verbalize] about your swing is vastly different from what you ACTUALLY are doing to create a high level swing.
As I have said many times as regards hitting expertise there are 3 modes so to speak: "Doing it, understanding it, teaching it." Elite players are--typically--ONLY expert in "doing it."
Read 16 tweets
22 Jul
As a guy who has spent much of my life either trying to create high level movement or trying to teach it, I marvel at the tremendous capability of Simon Biles. I consider it a supreme honor to even watch her!
The very obvious degree of lift she creates in this last phase at the end is tremendous. But note at the start the horizontal displacement [think broad jump].Tremendous physical capability!
One comment in this feed said along the lines of .."she may be the greatest athlete in our lifetime." Not a bad argument in that she can move in ways that NO ONE can actually do at this time.
Read 4 tweets
16 Jul
I want to add to/further describe this quote: "What is the purpose of slotting elbow? It's simply what young players do to get on plane."
What exactly does this "getting on plane" actually mean in the context on non-elite level hitters? And what are the exact kinds of joint articulations of the back arm/shoulder are involved?
Based on long experience/observation of non-elite hitters [starting at tee ball], it means the following:
Read 17 tweets
11 Jul
I can still remember [circa the 1970's] seeing the uncontrollable sobbing of some Latin guys getting released at the end of spring training. Never saw any Americans react this way. Why?
Because growing up where they did, they fully well knew the very stark contrast between the opportunities they might have here, vs. where they had been and now had to return to.
In a somewhat relative context, some of my most favorite guys to talk to about this country are cab drivers in big cities like New York. Asking them what they think about this country almost always yields an interesting insight.
Read 6 tweets
11 Jul
As some likely know, I recently talked about some aspects of Ohtani's hip action e.g., hip displacement via eccentric [twisting action] loading causing a "forward by turning," Actions synonymous with "Paul's "pelvic loading." I want to add to what he says here.
I think he is certainly empirically correct in saying that for most elite level hitters, the degree of "separation" between the hip and shoulder rotation [unload] is minimal.
To say it another way, the differential between the hips starting to rotate and the shoulders starting to rotate is minimal. [I will add here that, yes, there is some degree of variability among hitters as regards this differential, e.g, Harper opens the hips more than Trout].
Read 14 tweets
9 Jul
Last night I searched in vain [about 2 hrs. on my website] for an academic meta-analysis on implicit vs. explicit learning. I'm going to keep looking. But in the meantime here's a pretty good article about this [from a practical/teaching perspective].

An excerpt: "On the other side of the spectrum many self-taught athletes will often attempt to learn everything implicitly. The issue here is that without constructive feedback on the initial stages of learning bad habits will become permanent patterns in an athletes movement."
And: " Since you don’t know what you don’t know, you won’t be able to make the minor corrections necessary to continue to make improvements over the long term."
Read 9 tweets
9 Jul
I have many times talked about the motor learning concept of....the "action-perception gap" [or differential] regarding what athletes THINK they are doing. As opposed to what they ACTUALLY do.
Aside from the VERY starkly drawn "differential" between Sammy Sosa's on deck swings [wherein he JUST moved the arms/bat in an almost straight down trajectory] as contrasted with his ACTUAL game swings....
....there may be no better ex. than the comparison of Pense's on deck vs actual game swings. Here's a clip of the on deck swing:
Read 23 tweets
9 Jul
In a recent thread post I talked about Jim McClean's [golf instructor] concept of the "hip rise."

Here's a good slo-mo clip of Prince Fielder showing this [further slow it down via the .25 settings]:
Note the hip line change from relatively horizontal to the ground to much more DIAGAONAL to the ground from lead heel up to foot plant.
Also note---and this is very important---that though the lead shoulder "dips" [due to lead side lateral flexion] at heel up, by foot plant the shoulder line is more symmetrical [the "dip" is not there so to speak].
Read 9 tweets
8 Jul
Go to about 2:31 of this clip of Ohtani:
[and slow it down to .25 using the settings]:
There are a number of functional parameters I want to emphasize.
1] Note the lead leg/knee "cocking" [internal rotation] at set-up [heel up]. Note that the FIRST movement from that point is the HIP action. The hips are counter-rotating [eccentric "twisting"].
Read 14 tweets
8 Jul
I'm sure quite a few here have seen this overhead clip of Pete Rose done quite a few yrs back by Jack Mankin:

I consider this to be one of THE greatest clips ever that really helps to clarify what a high level swing actually looks like. Why? Well, one needs to understand the historical context of this clip.
Going back to around circa 2001 or thereabouts, aside from Paul Nyman's lead arm swing models, NO one had really shown this kind of clip of the relatively circular path of the knob from initiation to contact.
Read 15 tweets
1 Jul
Aw yes. J.R. Richards. I want to say a few things ---from personal experience ---about this remarkable athlete.
I first saw him in the lunch line in spring training [circa 1972 ]. I was right next to him in the line and my first impression was ..."DAMN look at the hip to shoulder ratio ...this guy --at 6'8"-- is built like a damn bodybuilder!"
As a 17 yr. old guy, who was pretty well recruited for college football I had been around some pretty decent physical specimens. But I had met NO ONE quite like J.R. in terms of physicality.
Read 13 tweets
30 Jun
Here's a DAMN GOOD! ex. of the lead side functioning really well [lead leg/lead hip]:

[Also, this is a damn good ex. of a no-stride "twist/untwist" wherein the lead leg and back hip internally rotate to load].

Note the lead foot/knee landing "square" to the plate as the leg reverses the internal rotation. This alignment best approximates the "athletic position".
This leg posture facilitates greater stability [as opposed to opening --external rotation] of the femur/knee. It also creates greater potential RESISTENCE against the hip rotation.
Read 10 tweets
30 Jun
Well, I don't want to go into the weeds too much here [again twitter ain't the place for in depth shit!!], but here's something from Paul Nyman yrs. ago [which I read then] on elastic energy:

Within this he cites some research about elastic energy. The entire article is relevant/interesting. But there's one key phrase I have found to be VERY interesting [over the yrs since I saw this --around 2001]:
"Research has shown that by increasing the speed of the stretching phase and resisting the stretching movement by applying greater tension in the muscle(s) being stretched, there is an increase in the storage of elastic energy."
Read 10 tweets
30 Jun
Patrick asks a good question here. I want to try to explain some of the factors involved in his correct conclusion [as regards those having "an advantage."
Here's some of the factors involved in being able to create effective adjustments:
1] Your best swing is a function of very efficient loading/unloading, i.e., using my simple construct of a high level swing, you know how to create very good bat/body alignment ...
.....from initiation to contact. And you know how to create very good hip to shoulder rotation [this entails speed, magnitude, timing of this trunk rotation].
Read 14 tweets
28 Jun
I recently had a DAMN GOOD! conversation with a pretty young guy 30 yr. old [relative to my age!!] Close to 2 hrs. Why do I think he is destined for a damn good future?

A few points about that: 1] He knew about Mel Siff and his books. To me, that was very impressive.
Mel Siff is arguably, THE finest sports scientists in the last 100 yrs.
2] I was talking about a book explaining body resistance exercise and he quickly cited it ["Overcoming Gravity"]. DAMN!! He knows Mel and this book!!
Read 9 tweets
28 Jun
Well look, I ain't all up on why one loses followers on twitter. I do see that I lost about 8 people after I posted about a former NYT reporter talking about the assault on MERIT.
My response? Well, if you don't like me quoting a liberal talking about the ILLIBERAL aspects of degrading meritocracy, I say good riddance!!
And I would further add that if this is the reason you decided to "un follow" me then I would say that this is perfect proof that you lack the intelligence to really benefit from this twitter account!!
Read 10 tweets
28 Jun
I briefly mentioned this book last yr ["Overcoming Gravity"]. This is a VERY good inquiry into the value of body weight exercises. VERY much relates to the kinds of exercises I have developed for hitters/pitchers over the last 20 yrs.
Here's the article I cited last yr:
I want to highlight a few points from this article:
"Impressive levels of strength that can be built by using bodyweight strength training for the upper body as the progressions require excellent proprioception and kinesthetic control. "
Read 16 tweets
25 Jun
For much of my life, certainly as someone who has devoted much of my life either as an athlete, or as a teacher of athletes, I have tried to live by and advocate a number of fundamental precepts.
Here's some of these: Development is a function of hard work, an ability to overcome any and all obstacles that may serve to impede progress ["grit"]; an ability to defer the immediate gratification impulse which may retard long term goals and progress.
An ability to honestly look within so as to see the kinds of personal behaviors that may be actually causing a lack of advancement to a higher level of development.
Read 15 tweets