"I'm taking some dry swings and throwing," said Votto, who has been limited to 62 games this season because of a distal strain of his left quadriceps. He went on the disabled list for a second time on July 8.
Dry swings are simply swinging the bat without trying to hit a ball. Votto said he has been taking the bat around with him wherever he goes. He might take a swing here and there during breaks in the weight room or rehab.
"You can't go from zero to 100 at once," Votto said.
Votto can be activated from the 60-day DL as soon as Sept. 4, but there is no timetable for his return.
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.