Long Runs

I’m looking for a good answer here (facts, links, all that good stuff), not an opinion. What are the reasons (if any) for/against long distance running for a pitcher in the off-season?

The amount of running would be 2-3 times a week. 1-2 times would be anywhere from 1-3 miles. 0-1 times would be long sprints (80 yards), then a light jog (30 yards) then another 80 yard sprint. This is done for 10-15 minutes, so about a mile or 2.

Also, I was going to make another post, but I thought I would save some virtual paper :wink:

I know the ■■■■■■■■■■■ guy says Olympic lifts are good for pitchers (dead lift, squats) for triple extension and all that. If a workout were to consist of only forearms and shoulder exercises (similar to thrower’s 10) with a good amount of various lunges and core work, but no DEAD LIFTS and SQUATS of ANY kind, why might this not be very beneficial for a baseball program?

Thanks.

the first question has been asked about 50+ times on this site. I’m not going to spend time answering it.

As far as Squatting and deadlifting, why in the heck wouldn’t you want to do these?

You’re not going to get very strong by only doing arm care stuff. Keeping your arm healthy doesn’t just mean keeping the rotator cuff, elbow flexors, etc. in shape.

It means getting THE ENTIRE BODY in shape.

Paul always says and I agree, 97%+ of those who complain of injury or arm pain HAVE NOT CONDITIONED THEMSELVES TO THROW THE BASEBALL. You should spend at least as much time preparing to throw as you do actually throwing. How many can honestly say they’ve done that?

It is my belief (and there is considerable evidence for this, check t-nation.com or ask KC) that one of the primary goals of any conditioning program is to improve rate of force development (as well as helping to thicken/strengthen the body’s tendons/ligaments/connective tissues). That being said, some of the most important lifts you can do are the ones that RECRUIT as many muscles as possible. This is called neural recruitment, and is the idea behind weighted ball training as well. Being explosive and lifting HEAVY weight are two ways to improve RFD.

Why would you avoid Squats and Deadlifts? Are you afraid of injury? They are safe once you learn correct technique (it take all of 5 minutes to watch a youtube vid). And for reasons I’ve already stated they will be SAFER in the long run because they will help your body to stay injury free by strengthening connective tissue, etc.

If you havent done your homework, Centerfield’s log is a good place to start. Poke around t-nation.com too if you’re curious. Hope this helps, just my rant for the day,
Ben

[quote=“LankyLefty”]the first question has been asked about 50+ times on this site. I’m not going to spend time answering it.

As far as Squatting and deadlifting, why in the heck wouldn’t you want to do these?

You’re not going to get very strong by only doing arm care stuff. Keeping your arm healthy doesn’t just mean keeping the rotator cuff, elbow flexors, etc. in shape.

It means getting THE ENTIRE BODY in shape.

Paul always says and I agree, 97%+ of those who complain of injury or arm pain HAVE NOT CONDITIONED THEMSELVES TO THROW THE BASEBALL. You should spend at least as much time preparing to throw as you do actually throwing. How many can honestly say they’ve done that?

It is my belief (and there is considerable evidence for this, check t-nation.com or ask KC) that one of the primary goals of any conditioning program is to improve rate of force development (as well as helping to thicken/strengthen the body’s tendons/ligaments/connective tissues). That being said, some of the most important lifts you can do are the ones that RECRUIT as many muscles as possible. This is called neural recruitment, and is the idea behind weighted ball training as well. Being explosive and lifting HEAVY weight are two ways to improve RFD.

Why would you avoid Squats and Deadlifts? Are you afraid of injury? They are safe once you learn correct technique (it take all of 5 minutes to watch a youtube vid). And for reasons I’ve already stated they will be SAFER in the long run because they will help your body to stay injury free by strengthening connective tissue, etc.

If you havent done your homework, Centerfield’s log is a good place to start. Poke around t-nation.com too if you’re curious. Hope this helps, just my rant for the day,
Ben[/quote]

X2

Pitchers workouts should focus on as many compound movements as possible, especially for the lower body. Now granted, I can’t squat and deadlift at the same time during my routine, too many of the same muscles get hit hard. But I do squat for about a month, then switch to legpress and start deadlifting.

Thank you. I would like to hear more, from anyone else that wants to chime in.

Lefty, try not to use “you” statements. I never said it was I. Thank you.

It may take 5 min. to learn proper form for squats, deadlifts and other olympic lifts, but it takes much longer to perfect technique. I think it’s important to have someone around who knows what perfect technique looks like before performing these exercises.

you cant beat mirrors or video for perfecting technique.

No matter how long anyone has been on this website, they had to have seen someone mentioning that pitching velocity and power comes from the legs and lower body. If one plans on doing all upper body work i.e. bi, tris, shoulders, chest, etc. then they are going to become too tight up top, when they should be working hard on their lower body. During the offseason, you want to train the heck out of your lower body and build those legs big and strong to drive your pitches come season. Don’t shy away from doing your upper body obviously, but you shouldnt be going all out for your upper body.

How many major league pitchers have you seen with ripped biceps and triceps? You dont, because they focus more on their lower body to make sure they still have the flexibility in their upper body and most importantly in the pitching arm.

Mr. Lee, you are so right! A long time ago (and not in a galaxy far away, but in New York), when I went to Yankee Stadium every chance I got I would watch the pitchers, particularly the Big Three, and I noticed that they were all driving off the lower half of the body, using the legs, the hips and the torso to generate the power behind the pitches—and I realized that doing this would take a lot of pressure off the arm and the shoulder! I watched them closely and I saw just how they were doing it, and I made a mental note and started working on it.
How NOT to get a sore arm. :slight_smile: 8)

Don’t get me wrong, the lower body has its place, and it’s certainly important to train it hard, BUT it’s totally overrated in terms of contribution to velocity.

You said how come no MLB pitchers have ripped arms? Excuse me but what MLB pitcher has ripped legs? How does being “ripped” have anything to do with this?

Rate of Force development is completely different from muscle definition. Again, citing the olympic lifters…many of these guys don’t LOOK strong at all! In fact, throw a shirt on them (hell maybe a jersey and some baseball pants!) And you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between this 160lb lifter and a normal kid of the same size.

How come a player can achieve 85%+ of his velocity without even taking a stride? How come a player can achieve 50% of his velocity just isolating the shoulder to the fingertips? It’s because of the incredible importance of the upper body/arm action.scapular loading/unloading action in the throwing process.

I gained 6+ mph in one day from improving my upper body action. With no lower body strength work prior to that.

This isn’t to discredit my previous post: I still believe the lower body should be trained hard, and that squats and deadlifts are of great importance. But to say that upper body is less important than the lower body is in my opinion completely false. Again, high level throwers can achieve nearly 90% of their velocity without taking a stride. What does this say about the lower body.

My .02

[quote=“LankyLefty”]Don’t get me wrong, the lower body has its place, and it’s certainly important to train it hard, BUT it’s totally overrated in terms of contribution to velocity.

You said how come no MLB pitchers have ripped arms? Excuse me but what MLB pitcher has ripped legs? How does being “ripped” have anything to do with this?

Rate of Force development is completely different from muscle definition. Again, citing the olympic lifters…many of these guys don’t LOOK strong at all! In fact, throw a shirt on them (hell maybe a jersey and some baseball pants!) And you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between this 160lb lifter and a normal kid of the same size.

How come a player can achieve 85%+ of his velocity without even taking a stride? How come a player can achieve 50% of his velocity just isolating the shoulder to the fingertips? It’s because of the incredible importance of the upper body/arm action.scapular loading/unloading action in the throwing process.

I gained 6+ mph in one day from improving my upper body action. With no lower body strength work prior to that.

This isn’t to discredit my previous post: I still believe the lower body should be trained hard, and that squats and deadlifts are of great importance. But to say that upper body is less important than the lower body is in my opinion completely false. Again, high level throwers can achieve nearly 90% of their velocity without taking a stride. What does this say about the lower body.

My .02[/quote]

Where in my post did I say that the upper body is less important? I didnt, and I didnt infer that at all. I said that you need to work your lower body twice as hard as your upper body. I never said dont work out your upper body, I actually mentioned that you still need to work your upper body, but i said dont work it like your lower body to prevent restricting flexibility.

Your body is a kinetic chain of energy stretching from your toes out your fingertips. A weak link in the chain will break it. Your whole body needs to be strong!

I just completed my third week of rippetoe and I can already see what squats and deadlifts have done to my overall power. These lifts are great and I dont know how I ever did without them ( oh yea and I gained 15lbs over this time too)…

Can we please hear more about this.

I do not see how anyone can argue this. According to the people talking about how important leg drive is to velocity shouldnt it be the other way around with 85% coming from your LOWER body

no, because HIGH LEVEL THROWERS ALL Exhibit these percentages. I.e. all 90+ mph players will be able to achieve 85% of velocity without taking a stride, 50% isolating arm. Without using the upper body to its full potential, you’re not going to reach that 90 mph mark.

I agree everything needs to be strong and flexible. Powerlifters have been shown to have superior flexiblity second only to gymnasts. Weight lifting doesn’t need to make you “muscle-bound.”

ROCK: gained 15 lbs in 3 weeks? I think that’s nearly 3 times the muscle your body is physiologically capable of building naturally in that time…KC have you heard anything about that?

As far as the 6 mph+ in one day that was a mechanical change, and you can read about it in my log. I’m not getting into it here.

I find it amusing you would suggest 85% of the velocity can come from the lower body. Studies have shown the opposite in high level throwers (i.e. EFFICIENT throwers).

I think you read a few too many online articles lefty. Just because the man said he gained 15 pounds doesnt mean he gained 15 pounds of muscle. Taking creatine and actually eating all 3 meals throughout the day (many skip breakfast, which is the most important!) can help to gain those 15 pounds throught a 3 week period Water weight, fat weight, muscle weight will all be added together. He didnt gain 15 pounds of muscle in 3 weeks so settle down.

85% without even taking a stride? What kind of throwing are we talking about? In place? Are we talking about having our feet already spread out? If so, then that’s already a stride, and we are using hip and shoulder seperation, which certainly has something to do with the lower body. Are we chopping off our legs and throwing? What the heck is the explanation here?

thats what i was wondering, because there is no way you can throw 85% velocity without taking a step or anything

After reading both of your arguments I have to side with Mr. Lee on this one. As far as the 15lbs in 3 weeks. I promise that is almost all water weight. But in your defense, you never said it was muscle. As for the 6+ increase, I have seen similiar stories after a mechanical tweak.

This was one of the drills I was referring to. True, there is some use of the hips, but none of that “pushing” which has been claimed to account for a hugely significant percentage of velocity. I would get exactly the same result on this drill if I had tooth pick legs because all the legs are really doing are providing a base for the upper body to rotate. This is a backwards chaining drill, by the way.

Explore Joe Moony

As for the 15 lbs comment I mis-read :slight_smile: Not unsettled here at all but thanks.

This a good, healthy debate by the way. Keep it comin’

I agree its been fu to read. That is pretty much all I have to offer though. I am a submariner so I build up my legs as much as I can and make sure I can do the splits all 3 ways all the way down. If im not flexible with the new strength I gain in the off season I put more stress on my lower back.