Is my thinking correct?


#1

So from reading and watching videos here is what I have come up with, would this be correct thinking?

  1. When the arm is back it really doesn’t matter if its straight back a little behind the head or a little in front of the body (if that makes sense) just so it’s in the “L” position. Whatever that pitcher feels comfortable with.
  2. The lead foot should land almost flat not on the front or the back.
  3. The hips shouldn’t turn until the front foot lands.

Now here is one i see all over the place. Should the lead leg land a little bent then as you follow through straigten out to get more power? I see some stay bent but it seems the power pitchers straighten that leg out.

Thanks!


#2

What age are you? (this could be important)

You’re over-thinking the mechanical aspect of throwing. When you try to focus on multiple checkpoints at once, you are going to fail and your mechanics will become stiff and mechanical. I did the same thing when I was younger.

Instead, you need to develop natural mechanics by focusing on trying to throw hard often while staying relaxed and letting your muscles work. If you want, you can choose one thing to work on, but you have to keep your focus on throwing hard and staying relaxed. If you want help on what mechanical aspect to choose, put up a video of you throwing off the mound at full intensity from both side and front angles.

When I was young, I would choose something to work on and then focus 100% on it when I was throwing. Sometimes it would work initially, but eventually you will lose your ability to repeat these mechanics in differing environments because of your reliance on some arbitrary relative focus point. Then I would switch to another aspect and I would be sure it would work this time. But it never did. After years of trial and error, I’ve realized how important it is to have your mechanics be ingrained. You NEED ingrained mechanics and focusing on multiple mechanical checkpoints will ruin any ingrained mechanics (like it did for me).


#3

Sorry I am a dad and coach. 9-11 year olds…mine is 9. Just tring to figure out how to teach the pitching part.


#4

At that age, most kids are still learning the basics. I wouldn’t worry about specific mechanical changes for the kids; just focus on having them throw hard and trying to hit their target. That simple focus should allow them to eventually learn how to use their bodies effectively, which is necessary to pitch effectively. You can fix other minor mechanical flaws later.

Also, you could try this post in the “Youth” section to get some more responses.


#5

Goose,
Trying to figure out the mechanical part of pitching can sometimes do more harm than good. Mechanics are a difficult teach and the instructor should know how to teach “the pitching part”, not figure it out along the way.
If you don’t have the knowledge and experience, IMO you can keep it simple. Don’t try big mechanical changes and let the kids throw. You can always post video of your guys on here and get help from numerous sources if needed.


#6

Youth baseball is full of dads volunteering to coach the kids. As it should be. The more we help them, the more we help the kids.

I would keep it real simple with 9yo’s. A stable posture and balance is the foundation of a good delivery and that’s where I’d start. Get the kids to keep there heads upright and moving only towards the target. Try to eliminate any movement side-to-side, back towards 2B, or up-and-down although recognize that their heads will move down a little as the back leg bends and due to striding down the mound.

Strategies for eliminating unnecessary head movement include putting them into a more athletic position - one in which they have the strength to stabilize their posture - by having them put more (or less) bend in the knees and waist. Also, watch for knee lifts that are too high for their strength to accomodate without excess head movement.

Once they’re doing good with posture and balance, start to pay attention to their glove arm - get them to control their glove instead of dropping it, pulling it or flying open with it.

For more on these concepts, see The Art and Science of Pitching in book or video (just the Mechanics video of the video series) here:
http://www.nationalpitching.net/products.asp?


#7

I agree with the others who say that, at 9 years old, you shouldn’t get too detailed in the mechanical aspects. Pick some high level things and let them have fun. For example, move the front hip sideways at the target and then rotate the upper body really late to throw. That’s not too much for a 9 year old to grasp and repeat.

I will say one thing though about the 3 mechanical items you mentioned. I wouldn’t tell a kid, or any pitcher, to not rotate the hips until the front foot lands. It’s contrary to what high level pitchers do (they rotate into landing) and is very, very difficult or darned near impossible to do. Try it. The closest I’ve ever seen was Mark Prior and Kerry Wood on an old Sports Illustrated cover photo. It was almost freakish flexibility in the hip joint.