WhatProsWear had the opportunity to test out the Blast Motion Bat Sensor. The Blast Sensor attaches to the knob of your bat and sends data measured from your swing to an app on your smartphone. I spent some serious time using the Blast sensor both in the cage and on the field and was very impressed with the entire product.
Blast Motion’s sensor is a lightweight disc that measures one inch in diameter. It attaches to the knob of your bat with a rubber mount. At first, I was concerned that the mount was too bulky and that I would feel it in my swing. This was resolved quickly, once I actually gripped the bat and took a practice swing. The only thing that I could feel was the thin piece of rubber that covers the knob. I could only feel the rubber because I wasn’t wearing batting gloves. Assuming you rock BG’s, you’ll barely be able to tell the difference.
The sensor charges wirelessly via a charging pad. Simply place the sensor on the pad for an hour and you’re good to go. A full charge lasted me about four days, which I was pretty happy with. Blast says it can last up to seven depending on the usage. If you plan on using it everyday you might want to charge it every two days or so just to be safe.
There are ten metrics that the sensor measures. Here is a link that explains each metric and why it’s important. Seven of these are free once you get the sensor and three require a subscription to Blast Connect. While unlocking the last three metrics, Blast Connect allows you to store swing data and videos in the cloud and connect with your coach for feedback on your swing.
Overall, the sensor does its job very well. It’s lightweight, barely noticeable and sends accurate data to the app.
Blast’s app “Blast Baseball” is outstanding. It’s neatly divided into four sections: the Dashboard, Videos, Progress, and Training Center. All of these sections are very useful and easy to use. We’ll get into them below.
The Dashboard is where you can see data from the metrics measured while you hit. There is an instantaneous connection between the app and the sensor, so right after a round of BP you can see data on every swing you took. This instant connection is a great feature because it allows you to see what you’re doing and make adjustments in between rounds.
You can customize your dashboard and create various visual representations of the data. You can have various formations of numbers appear, or you can choose between several graph options.
You can also view a 3D representation of your bat path for each swing. This is an incredibly useful visual representation of the data and allows you to see how long your bat is in the zone.
The Videos section allows you to store and view video of your swing on a timeline. Using your smartphone’s camera, the swing is captured and stored with its metrics. You can sort the videos by day, week, month, or year depending on what you want to see.
The Progress section compiles data from past swings so you can see how you’ve improved over time. You can set goals for yourself in each metric based on various levels of players so you can see how you stack up against competition at your current or future level.
You can choose to include swing data from the past day, week, month or year. Each selection creates a different chart that allows you to see your progress over that period of time. You can also select specific hitting sessions and see data for every individual swing. This is very helpful if you’re trying out something new during a round of BP so you can see if it’s actually working.
The progress section is a great way to see how you’ve progressed with your swing. it also keeps you motivated by setting goals for you so you can perform at the next level.
The Training Center shows you how to improve your metrics. You have access to a variety of drills designed to help improve your metrics. These are sorted by Speed, Power, and Control and are explained in short videos about 4-5 minutes long.
After you tire yourself out with the drills, you can listen to some pro tips from Carlos Correa and Rick Strickland, Blast’s Baseball Ambassador.
The Training Center also features videos on what the metrics are and why they are important.
I was very impressed with the Blast Product. While the sensor collects some interesting data, the app gives you a wide variety of options to understand it and learn from it. The seamless connection between the sensor and the app makes for an instant, useful hitting tool that should be in more players’ hands.
The most valuable tool a hitter can have is to immediately identify problems with his/her swing and make instant adjustments. For this reason, seeing exactly what you did right and wrong during a BP session with Blast’s sensor is a great learning asset. By using the Blast product, hitters will learn how to connect what they felt in the cage to the numbers they produced on the screen, thus improving their swing awareness.
The only thing I felt the app was missing is post-impact metrics such as exit velocity. Blast has another app called Blast Vision that uses your smartphone’s camera to measure a ball’s exit velocity, launch angle, and distance. Blast did assure me that they are working on combining the two apps, and I can’t wait to see what the product looks like when they get this done.