A new study shows a clear correlation between hand-eye coordination skills and better performance in baseball.
American scientists conducted their research on 450 athletes over the course of three Major League Baseball spring training seasons. Once they had all of the players’ hand-eye coordination scores, researchers looked for correlations with each athlete’s batting performance.
Batters who had higher hand-eye coordination scores had a better chance of hitting the baseball with fewer strikes than those with lower scores. Investigators also noted that players with faster hand-eye coordination were more likely to stay in the MLB longer than players with slower scores.
Specifically, researchers note that players with the top 20 percent of hand-eye coordination scores swung their bat at least 10 percent less for pitches outside the strike zone compared with players in the bottom 20 percent. Study authors also noted that the top 20 percent had a 20-plus percent decrease of at-bats before getting a walk compared with players who scored low in hand-eye coordination tests.
Dr. Daniel M. Laby, who teaches at State University of New York college of Optometry, was the lead researcher on this study. A few other key investigators include Drs. David G. Kirschen of Marshall Ketchum University and Paul DeLand of California State University.
Anyone interested in this research should check out the latest edition of Optometry and Vision Science. This study was listed under the title, “The Hand-eye Coordination of Professional Baseball Players: The Relationship to Batting.”