Validation of a Bat Handle Sensor for Measuring Bat Velocity, Attack Angle, and Vertical Angle

Ethan Stewart, Megan Stewart, Sachini N. K. Kodithuwakku Arachchige, Alana Turner, Reuben F. Burch V, Adam Knight, Josh Johnson, Tyler Younger, Harish Chander


Background: Bat velocity, attack angle, and vertical angle are common variables that coaches and players want to evaluate during their baseball or softball swing. Objective: The purpose of this study was to investigate and validate a baseball bat handle sensor against motion capture using recreational baseball and softball athletes for bat velocity, attack angle, and vertical angle. Methods: This single visit cross-sectional experimental design study utilized eighteen recreational baseball and softball players (ten males and eight females, age: 20.70 ± 1.69 years, height: 170.74 ± 5.69 cm, weight: 77.97 ± 12.30 kg) were recruited. Bat velocity, attack angle, and vertical angle from the bat handle sensor and 12-camera motion capture system were collected and compared using a two-tailed paired t-test. Results: Differences were statistically significant, showing that 95% of the time, the bat handle sensor overestimated the bat velocity by 1.92 to 2.77 m/s, underestimated the attack angle by -3.46 to -1.96º, and overestimated the vertical angle by 1.64 to 3.21º, compared to the motion capture system. Conclusion: The bat velocity and vertical angle were overestimated, while the attack angle was underestimated by the bat sensor. The information presented in this study can be viable information for coaches and players when utilizing the baseball bat handle sensor technology for training, practice, or in-game situations.


Baseball, Softball, Hitting, Accuracy, Technology

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