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Rules of Thumb for Recommended Bat Weights

01-21-2014 / By: X Bats


The plots above were obtained by using the Bat ChooserTM machine to determine the Ideal Bat WeightTM for a specific player. The data proves the point that bat weight affects both swing speed and batted ball velocity. But, how does an amateur player, without access to this machine, estimate his/her optimum (or ideal) bat weight in order to get the best batted ball speed and still maintain control over the bat? Using the results of a large database of measurements* from the Bat Chooser instrument, Bahill and his colleagues have come up with up set of basic rules of thumb which can help any player estimate the recommended bat weight he or she should be using in order to obtain the highest performance possible. If you want more detailed rules, or information about how Bahill and his colleagues arrived at these rules of thumb I would strongly recommend reading his book.[8](Note: For calculating bat weight from the formulas in the table, use height in inches, weight in pounds and age in years.)

Player

    Recommended Bat Weight (oz)

Major League Baseball     Height/3 + 7
Amateur Baseball     Height/3 + 6
Fast Pitch Softball     Height/7 + 20
Slow Pitch Softball     Weight/115 + 24
Junior League Baseball (13-17 yrs)        Height/3 + 1
Little League Baseball (11-12 yrs)     Weight/18 + 16
Little League Baseball (9-10 yrs)     Height/3 + 4
Little League Baseball (7-8 yrs)     Age*2 + 4

*(added 2/15/05) A reader pointed out to me that the data for the 10 year old Little Leaguer in the graph above suggests an ideal bat weight of 13oz, while the equation for a typical 9-10 year old player (55" tall) results in a suggested ideal bat weight of 22oz. Why the discrepancy? The table formula represents the average of 27 Little Leaguers, while the graph represents data for a single player (Bahill's son) who apparently falls quite a bit below the average measured values.


 

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