Throwing & Pitching Instruction
Practice Tip: Run through throwing and pitching drills with the entire team, pairing players up with another to do the drills. Throwing and pitching have much of the same technique in common so everyone benefits, and you may just discover a new pitcher in the process.
**If your child is currently throwing strikes, but lacks the fundamental techniques, DO NOT be tempted to ignore teaching proper form. While it very well may cause them to lack some effectiveness initially, what they gain from proper technique now will allow them to be far greater pitchers in the long run.
Throwing and pitching mechanics are very similar throughout most of the motion. This video is a throwing instruction that breaks down holding the ball, how to pull back and position the hand and arms, and the act of throwing. The drills used here also can be applied to pitching with some minor modifications. This is a great starting point.
Pitching: Grip and Release:
This drill focuses on the grip and end release point to work on proper hand positioning on the ball and that the proper elbow/shoulder alignment is learned for good arm motion and spin on the ball.
Pitching: Knee Drill for an Arm Position Focus:
Working drills from the knee allows you to focus solely on the upper body, mainly the arm and hand position. This video shows “power T”, although instead of facing the non-throwing glove at your target, you may bend it at the elbow a little and lead with the elbow instead.
Pitching: Upper Body Focus:
Taking what is learned from the knee drills into a standing position, this video shows a drill to incorporate more upper body mechanics while keeping the focus on only the upper body. Again, this video shows “power T”, although instead of facing the non-throwing glove at your target, you may bend it at the elbow a little and lead with the elbow instead.
Pitching: Shoulders Back Focus:
Taking what is learned from the drill above this video does an exaggeration to focus on keeping the shoulders back after the hips open up. Key to power is holding the shoulders back as long as possible and this could be a good way to get the feel for that motion. Again, this video shows “power T”, although instead of facing the non-throwing glove at your target, you may bend it at the elbow a little and lead with the elbow instead.
Pitching: Putting it All Together:
The mechanics here aren’t necessarily perfect, but it puts the entire pitching progression together pretty well referring back to the drills above. Use this as a base and the videos below to help fine tune the mechanics for more advanced pitchers.
Pitching: Aligning Your Stride with Balance:
This video discusses where the stride foot should land for proper alignment and working on a balanced follow through.
Pitching: White Sox Coach on the Step Back:
This video discusses the initial step back in the windup.
Pitching: Leg Lift, Stride, Rotation:
This video shows a basic drill for focusing on leg left into the stride.
Pitching: White Sox Coach on Leg Lift:
This video discusses the basics of the leg lift in relation to balance.
Pitching: Proper Arm Alignment:
This video discusses proper arm alignment for accuracy and injury prevention.
Pitching: White Sox Coach on Staying Closed:
This video discusses the concept of staying closed on stride-foot landing and how to come over the top versus around the side on release.
Pitching: The Problem with the Towel Drill:
Most towel drill exercises stress the importance of reaching out or whipping the arm – both of which deter away from proper power pitching and increase injury. This video discuss the issue around reaching out versus turning the hips first and why it’s ineffective.
Pitching: Long Toss Drills to Improve Velocity and Reduce Soreness:
This video discusses the concept of using long toss drills to help increase pitcher velocity and help arms recover in between outtings.
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