Last week we asked many of you to send questions our way so we can answer them in our emails. We got overloaded (which is great) and some of you received personal e-mails from us. The rest of you that didn’t get a personal e-mail will be getting your questions answered shortly in these emails.
This is one of the many great questions we have been asked. We want to thank Eric for this one.
My team for next year will be 13 year olds moving onto a bigger field and longer pitching distance. What is the best approach to strengthening arms at this age?
Great question! This is one we get asked time and time again. Moving from 52 feet to 60 feet 6 inches is a challenge for most kids this age. Most that take the leap have been throwing hard at 52 feet for awhile and then get frustrated when the ball slows down next to nothing at 60.
My suggestion is not to focus on arm strength alone. Strengthening your arm alone will not give you the velocity you need at any level. Your focus should be getting enough momentum toward home plate, utilizing your legs and hips in a way that will give you sufficient power. Your arm really should just be along for the ride.
To help you fully understand this, here is a short 5 minute video that will help answer this question: We now have 33 videos available on youtube.
I was a little sick when I made this video but it still has good info
Here are a few tips that will help with velocity:
· Make sure your stride is at least 100% of your height
· Use your landing leg as a leveraging tool to propel yourself forward (see video)
· Ensure you lead with your hips and take an actual stride instead of stepping to the plate. This ensures proper momentum
· Check your balance! Make sure all momentum is actually going toward home plate. Yes there is a lot to this one. In our pitching mechanics video it explains this thoroughly
· Don’t jump or hop to “foot strike” this enables you to keep sufficient balance. Instead, push off the ball of your pivot foot and use your landing leg as that leveraging tool to propel yourself forward
We share more velocity tips in our pitching mechanics DVD that we offer at simplified pitching.