The Axe Bat was made popular by Red Sox Outfielder Mookie Betts, and for good reason, the guy is a stud.
The Power Chute is beginning to break some ground across Perfect Game Baseball, which makes contact with thousands of baseball teams across the country. I happened to be one of those teams.
Before I was completely bought in, I made sure to ask the rep a lot of questions. I knew my fair share on the science of the swing, but I wanted him to explain it to me.
Every talented high school kid in America is looking for the next gimmick and the next tool that will elevate their performance in some way. The goal of this post is to do research on both products, the Axe bat and the Power Chute.
Why the Axe Bat?
The creators of the Axe bat claim there are 4 distinct features that make their product superior to the normal round-knob bat:
- The bottom hand sits on an oval shape, rather than a circular shape, which apparently allows for greater grip strength with less muscle tension. I’m not sure if they have any research to back that claim, but we’ll go with it for now
- The grip of the bat allows for the hands to work independently of each other. This is most likely due to the oval shape, which allows for more grip contact with the bottom hand resulting in more bat control
- The downward angle of the knob allows for the wrist to be in a more neutral position. A more neutral wrist means more efficient energy transfer through the hands and into the barrel of the bat imparting on the ball
- The backside of the handle has a smooth surface, which allows for more bat control
The circular knob that we’re all used to might be hindering our potential swing power. When we make a neutral wrist on a circular surface, this puts the upper arm is a disadvantageous position.
Most high level players actually grip a circular knob not on the handle, but they contact their bottom palm to the knob of the bat because this puts the wrist in a more natural neutral position.
When I was playing, there was really no criteria on what your bat size should be. What I used to do was place the bat on the ground and I wanted the knob of the bat to be at my belt buckle. Anything above or below would hinder my bat control.
Axe bat has a different way of measuring bat size: wing span!
Another thing about the Axe bat is that they hopped on the overload/underload swing train.
There is some great research now on overload/underload swing training. Axe Bat offers a product with overload bats, underload bats, and handle-loaded bats along with a swing program partnered with Driveline baseball.
Why Power Chute?
The Power Chute is a device that you attach to the bat itself, similar to the donut, but it’s not a donut.
The Power Chute uses pneumatic (wind) resistance or otherwise known as “drag”, which is the same physics concept we see with planes flying.
The resistance happens during the downswing where the bat bat begins to accelerate. This is probably my favorite part about the product because it teaches proper wrist movement, extension, and swing plane. Based on the resistance, you can feel if you are rolling over or keeping your bat in the swing plane.
When the chute starts to drag, your muscles quickly lengthen and then contract to move the chute through the air. It only takes a few swings to feel the plyometric effect take over.
Here is what the Power Chute offers that the Axe Bat does not:
- MLB-approved on-deck device
- Improves bat speed within 60 seconds
- Adjustable resistance
- Low impact training
- Improve balance and sequencing of the swing
- Life time warranty
- Much cheaper
Here is Barry Larkin talking about the Power Chute at the 2018 ABCA Conference
If you would like to purchase the Power Chute, click here!