leading with hips


Just a question. Some people might be confused going about leading with the front hip. If you try leading with your hips literally you might have your front shoulder tagging right along with it causing the shoulder to still be ahead. Is the appropriate way to give your back hip a push causin the front hip to get out in front of the rest of the body? Some clarification on this would be great.

You are correct that you want to keep the head and shoulders slightly behind the front hip. I don’t think you necessarily need to think about doing this by pushing the back hip. But if that mental cue works for you, then go for it.

If you were to try and teach someone to do this how would you go about it. When I try to lead with my front hip it isn’t going ahead of my shoulders and head, but when I try with the back hip it works. Dick Mills has a video on youtube showing this and he says the way you have your front hip lead is with the back one. I don’t fully understand what he means but I was thinking along those lines. Here’s the video:

I think that video is confusing and he says some things that don’t mean anything to me. Regardless, you need to get your center of gravity moving forward to build momentum and you need to lead with the front hip to set up a load for forward trunk flexion later in the delivery. Trunk flexion occurs after the shoulders rotate. It is simply the bending foward at the waist that happens about the same time that the arm comes forward. Setting up the load for trunk flexion is simply adjusting your posture so that the upper half stays back in a position where it can really “snap” forward.

You can practice leading with the front hip using a couple drills. First is the Hershiser Drill. In this drill you stand next to a chain link fence or padded wall, lift your front knee, push the hips sideways, and stride into the fence/wall. Your front hip must be the first thing to touch the fence/wall.

The second drill is the cross-over drill. You start as if you’re going to pitch from the stretch but you cross your stride foot over the pivot foot. Bend both knees a bit so that both feet are flat on the ground, Stick your front hip out towards home plate a bit if you want to exxagerate things. Then pitch from that position. The cross-over position pretty much presets you in a position where the front hip is leading.

You can also do a cross-over version of the towel drill which I would start with before throwing.

I know you have to lead with the hips into footplant. However some pitchers look like there giving the effect of driving the hip forward even more after they have landed.