How To “Use My Legs More”


#1

I am 12 years old and am normally a top pitcher for every team I play on. My accuracy is usually spot on and I vary my speeds well. Currently, I throw high 50’s which I would like to improve a substantial amount. My coaches say to “use my legs more” when pitching but I’m not really sure what they mean. They believe if I do this I can really reach the next level and improve my speed. If anyone could ellaborate more and possibly give me some advice on what my coaches mean it would be great!

                                                                                                       Thanks,
                                                                                                        Richard

#2

i’m going to assume that you’re a right hander
if you aren’t, just think everything as an inverse of what i’m going to say

are you transferring your weight from your right leg to your left leg as you pitch?
are you collapsing onto your left leg after release (is your left leg bending after your release)
are you driving your hips forward as you go through your motion?

these are just a few of many questions to ask yourself when trying to learn how to use your legs when you pitch


#3

Have you asked your coach this question? If he’s telling you to do it, he should be able to tell you how to do it and how it will improve your velocity. If you have asked him and he hasn’t given you an answer you can understand, see if he can explain it differently. Coaches know that all players learn in different ways and they don’t mind explaining things until you truly understand them. The worst thing you can do as a player is just sit there and shake your head up-and-down making him believe you understand him when you don’t. That just makes things bad for everyone.

Keep owning the zone!


#4

A good drill for using your legs more and getting them more involved is the wall drill. For this drill you stand as close as you can to a wall, as if the wall was the pitching rubber. Once you learn to lift your leg without bumping into the wall, you will have the right idea of how to get your back leg and hips doing the right things. After that, you need to work on striding to a position with your front leg that makes it easier for you to get on top of the plant leg during hip and shoulder rotation and follow through (look at my avatar). Lots of times coaches are trying to get you to stride further, but what the pitchers tend to do is reach with their stride leg, when adding more drive from the back leg will accomplish the same thing without resulting in a spongy front landing that kills all of your speed. Put some video up, if you can.


#5

I do most of the pitching coaching for our team, and our players are your age. When they say to use your legs more, they are referring to you using your windup to propel the ball instead of your arm. When you keep your back straight and wind up tight, throwing your front leg around can propel your hips in the direction that you want the ball to go in and your shoulders will follow. Your arm is like a slingshot when pitching. Your release point and grip will change the pitch, but the power comes from your body mechanics and rotation. So, basically, using the weight of your leading led to propel your body into the pitch will give you much more power than throwing the ball. Keep your leg up and tight and allow yourself to “unwind” your wind up. Your back leg will usually end up in front of you after the release if you do this correctly. Once you feel it once, you will know the feeling and it will become natural to you.


#6

Do you think you could maybe link a site to this drill or explain it a little differently, I’m kinda confused, sorry.


#7

Yes, my back leg does usually end up in front of me, but I’m not sure on how to just get my body and legs into it more. It even feels like I only use my arm and it’s frustrating. Should I take a bigger stride?


#8

#9

Thank you, and the point of this is to have the back leg not touching the wall to help get your legs and hips involved?


#10

The point is early and aggressive early momentum and involvement from the lower half will speed up everything about the delivery.


#11

Alright, can I do this drill from the windup? Will this help apply using my legs more to the windup as well?


#12

I would think the wall would prevent a step back :wink:


#13

Good point…:joy: