Proper way of throwing a softball/baseball and increase distance?
I like your question.....pretty specific what you want. First off, I have not trained any baseball/softball players. I have trained tennis players/football players/swimmers/crew rowers and few other sports. To gain distance you need to increase maximal power output and efficiency. Also, you will want to work in different ranges of motion with weight. All power in standing sports is produced by the hips. So you want to promote that. The stabilizing shoulder muscles (SITS) should be constantly worked to increase and maintain their abilites. The basis of a throw is a powerful push/extension. So if I were a baseball catcher I would do these exercises:
- Standing "L" cobra
- Russian press
-Med ball one arm chest pass
-One arm cable pulls with trunk rotation
- Med ball slams
- Jumping squats
-One arm DB pshoulder press with pivot
- Jumping lunges
-DB Pushup to one arm DB row
-Hip flexor complex
- Calf complex
getting more specific would be a little too much for this reply
do you ever throw using weighted balls? Back when I used to pitch, we would warm up with weighted baseballs. Really built up the speed in your throw (but you gotta do other exercises too to make sure you don't jack up your rotator cuff). I had an 85 mph fast ball as a highschool freshman...
a few things... 1 just before you are about to throw... you reach back with the ball... (STOP)... look at your hand.... is it facing towards or away from you... this is a quick check I do with all my 12-13 year old players... but you would be amazed how many high school kids don't throw the ball properly... chances are if you are having a problem with distance... you throwing mechanics are off...
IMHO don't mess with weighted balls by yourself... because if your throwing form is off just a bit... it is pretty easy to mess up your elbow or shoulder...
Basically you need to find somebody who really ... and I stress really knows how to throw a baseball properly... like an ex college pitcher or an ex major league pitcher... to help you learn to throw properly... learn to pitch... perhaps not because you will be a pitcher but because it will teach you to transfer your weight properly... how to get out over your plant foot... etc..
If you can't find a resource like that... check your library system... see if they have any videos by Tom House... The Art and Science of Pitching DVD Series... This guy is an amazing baseball coach... actually you should get this stuff first to make sure that whoever you get to work with you actually knows what they are talking about...
It is so hard to correct improper throwing technique... and to overcome all the muscle memory... so if you can't find anybody knowledgable enough... get a parent... to watch the videos with you and then try to tell you if you are getting it right... if you can't get that... then video tape yourself... and compare it to what the video says you should do...
take this as a 2 prong approach... 1 fitness training... 2 proper throwing technique...
Two important points:
1. an outfielder must always throw straight overhand, no side arm or partial side arm throws, that is the arm must come straight over your shoulder so that at the highest point the ball is in your outstretched hand as high above your shoulder as you can reach (like you are trying to reach something high directly above your head). That gives you maximum power and puts minimum side spin on the ball so you don't throw a curve ball which is almost impossible to control over long distances, like from the outfield to home plate, and if it does bounce tends to bounce off at weird and unpredictable angles, making it impossible to chase down when it arrives in the infield.
2. to take full advantage of your legs, hips and core you must start the throw with your weight on the opposite foot and move your weight to the foot of the arm you throw with as your arm moves through the range of motion (just like a big league pitcher or like when you are swinging a bat). As an outfielder you even have the option of throwing from a running start. So start off like you are beginning a full out sprint and just throw the ball on the second or third step (even better if you can time the catch or pickup of the ball so you are at a full sprint when you catch the ball and can add that additional speed to your throw and not need to take any additonal time to take a few running steps). Watch a big league game and when an outfielder is waiting for a fly ball and needing to try to gun down a base runner, he will take a half dozen steps back and then time his sprint to the ball so he is in a full sprint just as he catches the ball and then continues the full sprint towards the infield while throwing the ball.
^^^great advice! thanks! also to make sure I am throwing the proper way, is there a stretch or anything I should feel to make sure I am doing it perfectly with all the steps?
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