All of a sudden I’m having trouble breathing.
Actually, I am a real big believer in proper breathing technique in hitters as well as pitchers (runners too). In fact, it is a very important issue in some of the martial arts. Also utilized in weight lifting.
Hope I’m not opening a can of worms, but I think all coaches should study breathing technique. There are some very important advantages in correct breathing.
To answer the question above… Yes exhaling with the swing can be beneficial. There is no reason it should limit how smooth the swing is. Pitchers can benefit from exhaling to and through release. Runners by exhaling at their start.
Perhaps just as important is having a loose mouth! For those who have never heard of this… please don’t laugh… a loose mouth can help loosen the neck and the shoulders. Horses do this naturally when they run. It also helps your vision. If you don’t believe it… Here’s a test… Pick out an object a fair distance away on a wall. Grit your teeth hard and tighten your mouth as hard as you can and look at the spot. Now open your mouth in a relaxed manner and look at the same spot. So in many hitters a loose mouth can help loosen the shoulders and help your vision. It’s worth a try… you might be one of those that this very small detail will help.
Better stop here… and wait to see if everyone thinks I’m nuts!