Hip Rotation Question Please advise! 14 year old RH 5'11 1/2

Perhaps it would be more constructive to describe how the hips rotate rather then when. The how creates the when.

yea i think i had a misunderstanding of the hips…they aren’t the sides of your waist but located in the pelvis region (where the hip joints are located)…I read this article and watched the video below.

you can control hip rotation by internal/external rotating your thighs, that will turn the knee out or in depending on which way you rotate…

as you can see from pics and video, a pitcher’s back knee does turn inward before landing because of thigh/hip rotation. So, rotation of the hip joint does happen before landing.

For most pitchers, the hips start to rotate to allow the front leg/foot to open up into foot plant. But the explosive part of hip rotation occurs after foot plant and after the front leg has braced. How much the hips open to allow the front leg/foot to open differs from pitcher to pitcher based on their flexibility.

Thanks for all the help.

I like to see that there are different opinions about this matter of the timing of the hips. In watching the other pitching clips I see it both ways. A few seem to power their hips through into foot strike and others only open slightly and then aggressively rotate their whole trunk (hips, core, and shouders) after foot strike. It appears that the pitchers that rotate before foot strike get more hip/shoulder separation than those after foot strike. If after foot strike, the shoulder and hips are firing (starting) at the same time and the only separation is that the hips are faster (shorter distance to travel) than the shoulder.
I do know that this is easier to teach that the whole trunk (hips, core and shoulders) all fire or start at the same time. The hips (faster)open first followed by the shoulders to give that torque, by twisting, needed.
On the other hand, it is hard to keep the hips from opening before foot plant because through the stride the pitcher is closed (taught heel to the catcher) and then partially open into foot strike.
I believe we are going to focus on keeping hips as closed as possible only opening or twisting of the thigh for foot strike and then aggressively power the trunk through after foot strike until release.

Please advise if my analysis is incorrect. I am open to change.

This seems also to work best with our hitting instruction which is never start the swing before foot plant and to keep our back hip and shoulders firing together (stay connected). As I said before there is a small amount of hip/shoulder separation simply because the hips are faster through the zone than the shoulders. More hip/shoulder separation in pitching because of location of back hand (throwing hand) at foot strike.

For pitching, the proper kinematic sequence is for hips to rotate before shoulders.

I agree that the explosive part of hip rotation accurs after foot plant but hips begins to rotate before. I also agree with the kinematic chain rotates hips before shoulders but its not with the intent of delaying the shoulder to after hips, after foot plant. When the foot plants the arm/shoulder begins to come forward. In an earlier post with a video of Justin Verlander (may or may not be the best example) I can not separate the explosive part of hip rotation with the arm/shoulder beginning to come forward. Some players do appear to rotate explosively before or into foot plant and maybe that is to get more hip/shoulder separation but it seems to me that this would transfer some of the energy down to the foot instead of up to the shoulder/arm.
I picture the kinematic chain or pitching to be like a whip. The source of power to the whip is the handle(hip) and the shoulder/arm as the end of the whip (stored energy). When the handle (sorce of power) moves forward so does the end of the whip or shoulder/arm. The separation is in the distance the end travels and not in which starts first with the further back to front the end travels the faster it is going (more velocity).
This does not take into account for slack in the whip, but if you have ever popped a whip with slack in it, the first snap is in the rear. This snap does not sound good for the shoulder. The only delay I see is not in the shoulder but in the layed back position of the arm/elbow with all of the snap coming at release and not before.

Thanks again for all the help!

May I suggest that a fruitful discussion might be on the “why” of hip rotation. What are we trying to achieve? What benefits can be optimized by whatever timing arrangements? If we understand the “why”, we might have better insight into the “when”.

the hips are the powerhouse to every athletic sport. Boxers, runners, tennis, golf, bowling, Jai Alai…to name some.

you are more efficient and put less stress on your shoulders and arm when the hips do the work for you. The hips are what links the lower body with the upper body. To get power from your lower half you have to start them before the upper body.

It’s really not that complicated to get the hips involved when you start out in an athletic stance. You run into problems of not generating power from the lower half when you are standing up straight. Your hips are locked when you stand up straight but if you sit your butt back a little your hips will have free range of motion.

If you look at every high level pitcher, they all have that caved in waist with their chest over their knees during the stride. You will not see them with their waist in a straight line with their chest and knees. As if they were standing up straight during the stride. If they did then they wouldn’t be using their hips.


Note: I’m not suggesting that your son should necessarily emulate Roy Oswalt’s personal style. But, watch this clip with a focus on how his hip rotation relates to the timing of his stride and landing, and then watch it again for how his shoulder rotation relates to the timing of his hip rotation.

I think you’ll be able to answer your own questions if you watch this enough times, perhaps also looking at related slo-mo videos of some other pitchers as well, to make sure you see common themes vs. style issues.[/quote]

Here’s a question for you Laflippin as I continue to search for the holy grail of answers to the perfect windup. My son is about the size of Oswalt and has about the same stride length…near 100-110% of height due to good momentum. I noticed something in the great link you had about Oswalt that I’ve never seen too much of before and Tony34 quoted on in the Utube link itself.

His posting foot seems to not be put down parallel to the rubber but almost seems to be cocked a little open towards the home plate side of 3rd base. Does it seem to be straddled across the front of the rubber…it certainly isn’t parallel to the rubber. I guess my epiphany on this is can it be that he turns it ever so slightly open in order to allow his hips to explode more right before foot plant? To me this clip clearly shows Oswalts back knee turning over right and I mean right before his front foot plants. He is already extended with heel pointing up…and I just wonder if by turning the post foot in like that it helps him to turn over that back heel more efficiently into foot plant, thereby creating more seperation between the hips and shoulders and highre velocities in release do to more arm whip.

Am I off base here Laflippin? Is this what you see…I know Tony34 saw it in the clip.

the tim lincecum video demonstrate very good example of a rushing problem, which means when the back leg is half turn over, the ball is not even behind the head

like the picture those above, all are perfect timing,wihch means the ball is behind the head , the back leg is half turn over. after that you have a lead with elbow action then the back leg is fully turn over)

Answering to the question of hips rotation

if you have a proper stride, you will have more than 100 % of your stride angle, that stride angle will give u a good front leg standing ,

so what is hips rotation?

hips rotation is that when your front leg is standing still, your body is sitll facing the right side of the mound, like the those pictures , the belt will facing the right side of the mound and your ball is behind the head and the hand is vertical

a perfect example , i recommand,

greg maddux
Roy oswalt
Mariano Rviera
Tom Glavine

I have to admit I may have been wrong. I do see guys turning over the foot before landing but part of what creates hip/shoulder separation is as the hips are rotating toward the plate the shoulders are rotating away from the plate to create torque. I learned this from Tom House’s books and it makes sense.

Also the fact that the the hips and shoulders are going in opposite directions makes the pelvis not fully rotate until after foot plant though the hips are trying to face toward the plate fully but again not allowed because of the shoulders rotating in the opposite direction.

Do I have this right now or am I still wrong?