Recently I have been experimenting with a knuckle curve on a flat mound in my backyard. The weird thing is that whenever I throw a knuckle curve or knuckle ball grip with out turning my wrists, it still has a lot of movement downwards. I am trying to be safe by not twisting my arm. Is this safe?
Yes and no. As someone who throws a nasty knuckle curve, I have a few pointers.
I’m assuming you use this grip…
My first pointer is when you first throw the knuckle curve the #1 thing is to get used to the actual grip. When I first started it was uncomfortable. It slipped a lot, and made my finger hurt big time. I’ve thrown it for a while now so it just takes getting used to.
As a curveball it obviously has a “curve” and it is said to be faster and have a better output on your arm. Both are true but here is a secret tip.
When you throw a knuckle curve exactly as you would a fastball the natural motion makes the middle finger go down and that causes the break. If you want a better break throw it like a curveball it will act like a slurve and break more horizontal. It takes used to but here’s what I’m saying overall.
Knuckle curve is good on your arm and there are two ways to kinda throw it but keep in mind that…
It doesn’t slip
This is a given obviously
You throw in your regular arm slot
When I first started throwing it like a curveball and not a fastball, my arm slot dropped. Don’t drop, it will kill your arm
Don’t be nervous. Do not overthrow, do not shortarm it
For one it will not be accurate and if overthrowing it might hook your wrist and this is bad.
That’s all I got but keep working at it and you’ll be fine =)
Thanks for the reply! For some odd reason, if I use a knuckle ball grip, the ball does the same thing. Also does it make any difference if you un tuck you’r knuckle? Also what grip is better for begainers, your grip above, or the four seam variation?
I have not tried it untucked.
When I started I used the two seam kinda grip because i was used to using two seam grip and i threw it like a fastball. That’s probably a really easy way to get used to it fast.
But I’ve thrown it like a half curve half fastball for months now and it has a very sharp break. When I aim it at a batter, it goes from their eyes down and into a Lower half of the strike zone.
Here’s another video that was helpful
“Recently I have been experimenting with a knuckle curve on a flat mound in my backyard.”
Warning! Understand that any pitch type that performs forearm drive supination, has been proven Kinesiologically to cause ballistic end of range of motion hyper extended elbow bone crash where the Elecranon process smashes against it’s fossa, impinging cartilage first.
“The weird thing is that whenever I throw a knuckle curve or knuckle ball grip with out turning my wrists, it still has a lot of movement downwards. I am trying to be safe by not twisting my arm.”
If the ball releases over your middle finger, you are supinating your forearm
“Is this safe?”
Absolutely not, this pitch type has been analyzed as forearm supinated a long time ago.
Here are the pathomechanical effects of forearm supinated pitch types.
- Loss of elbow range of motion in both directions.
- Severe inflammation.
- Splits in cartilage.
- Bone spurs that get started between the split cartilage.
- Loose impediments that were bone spurs that chip off.
- forearm Extensors driven leaving the UCL alone in battling stress.
This is why kids get pain laterally (outside the elbow) from any curve ball accept a pronated driven one.
Is there any possible way to throw it safely? And why is it dangerous to spin a ball of your middle finger in one grip and do the same thing on a two-seam grip? Every pitch your spinning off you’r fingers,; why should this one be different? If you look at the two-seamer you are also spinning it of you’r fingers? Why is a two seamer considered safe.
I’ve thrown it that way for YEARS. You are fine but monitor your usage.
The knuckle or spike curve can be thrown two different ways—(1) with the fingers behind the ball through release (like a fastball, but with the knuckle/spike grip) or (2) with the fingers to the side and the wrist pre-set in a supinated position (like Lance McCullers throws it). The first method is no more dangerous than throwing a fastball. My son throws it this way and has a lot of success at the high school level. The pitch has better velocity and a sharper later break than the traditional curveballs I see. It’s also easier for him to control, since the fastball delivery is already engrained—just needed to master a different grip.
This video explains the first method well.
The second method is not necessarily dangerous if thrown correctly. But the preset supinated position, which quickly shifts to pronation after release, is certainly harder to master and may be a little hard on the arm of an 11-12 year old. It is basically a traditional 12/6 curveball delivery with a different grip. Personally, I would stick to the first (fastball-like) method at the early age. If it works well for you, you can continue to throw it that way for many years and it should continue to improve. Good luck.
Way better explanation than mine. Thanks for sharing this
“Is there any possible way to throw it safely?”
I can imagine someone trying to, that actually knows what they are doing and understands the difference between supinated driven pitches and pronated versions might voluntarily get it to a pronated version but I doubt it and why? when eliminating a great buttressing action the index finger gives the middle finger would be detrimental to grip ergonomics.
“And why is it dangerous to spin a ball of your middle finger in one grip and do the same thing on a two-seam grip?”
Understand how your forearm articulates and it’s reaction associated with elbow range of motion and you will find out why reaching this elbow end of range of motion ballistically is bad. Forearm supinated pitch types destroy your elbow.
“Every pitch your spinning off you’r fingers,; why should this one be different?”
You apparently only know about releases that supinate your forearm and Sliders, Cutters and Curveballs are traditionally forearm supinated where the ball is released over the top of your middle finger. This is a kinesiological fact.
You should using the opposite forearm drive mechanism pronation where the ball is released below the middle finger so your Humerus and forearm are traveling in the same direction inwardly and allowing the elbow to swivel back around to the other side before hyperextention and then involuntarily flex elbow up.
“If you look at the two-seamer you are also spinning it of you’r fingers? “
This is a lesser forearm involved pitch type where your middle finger stays behind the ball but also remains in the supinated or pronated performed.
“Why is a two seamer considered safe.”
Because most or all of them are involuntarily driven with partially timed forearm pronation close to release that like I said are better performed knowing why they move voluntarily and that would be ball axis presentation.
Did you ever wonder why Thor can throw a 98 MPH Sinker?
All you kids should be learning a fastball Sinker, it is powerfully performed with maximal range voluntary forearm pronation snap making it a safe and sane pitch type. All my 12 yo’s throw it.