How I encountered Pocket Radar Smart Coach?
This past weekend, I had the honor to see some of the great coaches that have impacted the game of baseball. The American Baseball Coaches Association delivers 4 days of baseball heaven including daily clinics on different specific topics, an Expo Theater involving specific topics based on study, and a trade show, in which hundreds of companies go on to sell and endorse their particular products, including the Pocket Radar Smart Coach.
In the past, I used the older version of the Pocket Radar. More known as the ball coach, this small handheld device was able to collect pitching, hitting, and throwing velocities. Standard features included constant, in which you can collect up to 25 numbers without pressing down on the main button, a unit feature, mph or kph, a clear, and an off feature. With the ball coach, I collected pitching velocities from behind the catcher and exit velocities from hitters during lessons when I was in the off-season. I would track their progress through this ball coach, along with video analysis.
When talking with the representatives of the Pocket Radar team, my thought process was how does this type of radar gun stand out from the rest?
1. Pitching Video + RADAR
What I like about the app is that you can record video of a pitcher throwing on or off the mound. Whether you are recording flat-ground, plyo-velo, mound velo, etc.. you can film and view the velocity of each pitch. Here, we can see certain movement patterns of the delivery and if we see a deficiency and work on correcting it while seeing the feedback of how it effects our velocity. You can see how we can truly utilize that Smart Coach for Pitching alone.
2. Hitting Video + RADAR
Like the pitching section. You can use the radar for exit velocity and intent. I emphasize here because I like smart coaches ability to set the velocity in certain increments. For example, the hitter below was asked to hit the ball no less than 90 mph. If he is under that speed, it will not show.
3. Collection of Data
Very simply, the Smart Coach allows me to save data of our swings or pitches that have occurred. I am still working out some of the kinks as to how to save each individual, so for the time being, I send it to myself through email and then delete the numbers until the next guy. One thing that is not on their is that in between the “pitching” and “delete” section is where the video section will be held. Underneath is an example of how the Smart Coach receives data from one of our pitchers during his first bullpen.
4. In Conjunction with the Slow-Pro App
This is one feature that I like about the Pocket Radar Smart Coach. I can edit the videos taken on the Smart Coach and put them together with slow motion apps, including the Slow-Pro App, in which you can take video and slow it down in many different frames per second. I enjoy this due to even breaking film down even more.
- Outfield Velocity & Video
- Infield Velocity & Video
- Connection to different apps, including Slow-Pro.
- Intent Based Workouts involving percentages and RPE.
- A “second opinion” to other radar guns.
I personally like using this device for multiple reasons. For one, we use the Rapsodo Pitching device and the Smart Coach is another tool we can use to something as simple as the pitching delivery or the swing. Many other coaches have asked about other ways to use the Smart Coach and these are just some ideas that we use the Pocket Radar. I am all for other ideas and looking to always improve our players through technology and the Smart Coach is a stepping point. Please do not hesitate to reach out!
Kevin J. Walsh