How could long toss possibly be a detriment?

I know we’ve been over this a few times at LTP, but I wanted to open it up again:

I still have a mixed opinion of Mr. Mills. I like and ascribe to a lot of what he has to say, but there are some points he makes where I feel he is misguided.

Please correct me if I’m wrong but it seems to me that he thinks long toss is bad because it teaches bad mechanical habits and it puts too much strain on the arm. It was my understanding that the purpose of long toss is exactly the opposite. I really don’t think that pitchers go into a long toss session thinking about or hoping to improve their mound mechanics. Secondly, I know from personal experience that all long toss did for me was strengthen and loosen up my arm. Long toss helped me to realize the kind of general arm action I was going for any time I throw a ball, whether it be pitching or otherwise.

In general, like Dick Mills… except for his opinions on long toss. Could somebody maybe shed light on why he sees long toss as a mechanical detriment. I know he thinks it puts too much strain on the arm, but why? One uses their lower body in long toss quite a bit, right? I’m really curious about this particularly because after I started checking Mills out, I was shocked that he held this view of long toss.

As a side note, does anyone know why he likes Edinson Volquez as the picture of solid mechanics. He never once mentioned in any of the videos that I watched of the danger posed by pulling ones elbow back while getting loaded as he does.

To me, Mills seems like a pitching paradox. He has a lot of good things to say and in general I like him, but there are viewpoints he holds that just kind of shock me and fly in the face of everything else I’ve learned about pitching this past year.

It sells DVDs :slight_smile:

Aahh…say no more :wink:

The purpose of long toss is to stretch out and strengthen the arm, isn’t it?Not to mention practicing getting your whole body into the act—driving off the lower half of the body, using your legs, hips and torso in one continuous (and seamless) motion. So go ahead and do it, in moderation of course—you don’t want to throw your arm out. You can watch the major league pitchers in action, see how they do it, and then go ahead and do likewise. :slight_smile:

As a comparison, House likes long toss for pithcers but only at a distance where proper pitching mechanics can still be used. But House is not completely against it as Mills is. In fact, if you watch USC pitchers warm up before a game, they will do long toss as part of their warm-ups but only out to that distance where they can still use pitching mechanics.

So, I guess House agrees with Mills from the standpoint of not spending time practicing mechanics you don’t use on the mound.

To me, long toss can be looked at in two ways. For someone who is a novice player it can be very bad for your arm for the fact that the farther you have to throw everyone thinks you have to tense up the arm more and give more effort with the arm. This is obviously what can make long toss bad for your arm. If you are someone who has some knowledge about the body and using the body more to throw i think long toss is extremely helpful because you are training those muscles more so than just your arm. Just like weight training makes you stronger and faster, this trains your body to build stronger and faster muscles (mainly your core) to throw harder and efficient.

Well, what long toss did for my arm was loosen the heck out of it just like Zita said. Now, I had experience throwing when I first began a long toss regiment but I hadn’t played baseball for a couple of years let alone pitched.
Also, I researched it before I did anything. I saw the purpose of it and decided it would be a good method for turning an old stiff 1988 topps baseball card bubble gum arm into a well chewed piece of bazooka joe.