Need help with my arm slot/shoulders

Right now I am trying to get my arm slot from over the top to 3/4 but I am having a lot of difficulty. Are there any tips on how I can get that arm slot in a more effective way?

Why are you trying to change arm slots?

Since we don’t know how you’re trying to do it now, how can we make suggestions about how to do it more efficiently? :wink: Please explain what you’ve already tried to do.

I’m concerned that you are trying to change because of something you have had someone say about you, I would think it would be important to get some other opinions about what you might want to do and if a change is even needed. How about upload some video?

I will be able to have a video during this winter due to my basketball schedule. I am trying to change my arm slot to 3/4 because my arm gets too strained by going over the top and it throws off my accuracy. I have recently tried to make my head go to the outside of my right plant foot when I throw and the follow through.

Just an update for anybody following this post…I have been able to get into a prospect camp this weekend so I should be able to have a video of my pitching by Sunday. If not im sorry and will have to wait till winter.

I’ve seen this all too often—a pitcher who was forced to change his arm slot because somebody, more often than not a coach with an agenda, insisted on it—usually for no good reason than “just because”. And this leads to disaster. Obviously you’re throwing from an arm angle (arm slot) that is not your natural delivery and that is not comfortable for you; no wonder you’re having difficulties. I would suggest that you get together with a good pitching coach, one who will help you get back to an arm angle that will enable you to pitch effectively.
I was lucky in that regard. I found an absolutely incredible pitching coach—I wish he were still with us!—he was an active major league pitcher whose basic premise was that every pitcher has a natural motion, and what he would do was work with that pitcher and show him/her how to make the most of it. I was a natural sidearmer who, while not fast, could throw hard and who used the crossfire extensively, and this guy showed me how to take full advantage of it, in the process helping me refine that crossfire and expand my repertoire as well as teaching me a lot of advanced stuff he felt I needed to know. They don’t make pitching coaches like that any more. If you can find someone like that, consider yourself lucky indeed. 8)

I agree, trying to change something as dramatically as your consistent arm slot should be coached by someone who knows what they are looking at. Just to say that 3/4 will make everything better might be throwing tons of other problems into the mix. Throwing without issues takes many aspects of body control and mechanics and changing something for the better will take effort and expertise.

From that, I take it that you’re changing mostly for yourself because of arm and accuracy issues, not because someone advised you to do it.

Given that he said he had some pain when throwing over the top, there’s a possibility that it never really was his natural motion but something someone told him to do previously. If so, is he simply trying to correct something and moving toward his natural motion? SubwayJ, have you been coached in the past to throw from over the top? Just a hunch.

I don’t at all doubt that he may well be someone who just can’t throw over-the-top. My kid was like that. Every coach he ever had tried to get him to throw over-the-top as an IFer, then when he started pitching, things really got bad.

I tried and tired to tell them that the slight scoliosis he had made it impossible to throw the way they wanted, i.e. upright and over-the-top, but it was a real chore, and I got known as a PITA parent for what turned out to be a short while. I was lucky enough to have a for real ex-ML pitching coach as a friend, and whenever I’d run into a coach that wanted to change him, I’d call on my friend, and he was kind enough to meet with the coach and get him to change his mind and leave the boy alone.

As time went on and he began to have serious shoulder problems, we found out that he also had another problem no one had recognized until it was too late. He had a Type III acromion process, and eventually enough was know about it, that its very likely that was the main cause of his impingement. Its too bad it wasn’t taken care of until it was too late.

All that misery could have been easily avoided with a simple x-ray. What’s really troubling is, very few coaches are aware of this “issue”, and virtually no parent’s are. I found out about it from the top Sports Ortho in NorCal. He couldn’t understand why there wasn’t more of an attempt to diagnose that very simple thing then, and its still not something many people talk about.

Usually, coaches and parents just ASSUME the BEST way to throw is over-the-top, and that’s just wrong on so many levels. :frowning:

Good stuff, sk. I guess I’m thinking that, if he were told by a well intentioned coach, early on, to throw over the top but that’s not his “natural motion”, then changing that now might be exactly what he needs to get him back to something better for him.

I just wanted to thank all of you for following this and giving some advice to me for my pitching. :slight_smile: I am indeed having troubles with arm pain and accuracy due to my arm motion not being natural. I am trying to change it back to the natural slot but just hard too because i have thrown over the top for a couple of years. i will have a video of some sort on sunday this weekend.

You’re probably correct, but here’s what’s wrong. How does a kid or a parent who isn’t very knowledgeable, tell a well intentioned coach who tends to try to make all players fit into the same little box, from a coach who understands that there are many ways to skin a cat and doesn’t try to generate “clones”?

I know for sure that it took me about 5 years of some pretty intensive study to finally realize this. Almost all coaches try to improve their players, but there is a huge range in their knowledge and ability to make that happen. Likewise, there’s absolutely no way any one coach, no matter how good or bad, is the best or worst for all players.

I have a friend who had a unique way of finding out what a player’s “natural” slot was. He’d have them stand just in front of 2nd, then stand just behind the mound and smash ground balls, and line drives at them, then holler “1st” or “3rd”, indicating where they needed to throw the ball. And to make things even more difficult, he’d hit balls with as little time as possible between them, and he’d do that until they were literally dead tired.

His reasoning was, when a player loses the ability to get into his trained routine, all he has to fall back on is his natural way to cope. Since one of those things was to make a throw, in his opinion, the player’s natural arm slot would show up because it would be the easiest one for him to execute under pressure without thinking.

Although he did enjoy a lot of success, he was much like my son’s pitching coach, in that more often than not, players he worked with would often have their team coaches doing things that were at odds with what he was teaching them. I think that causes a lot of problems, and stops many players from developing optimally.

Unorthadox methods are sometimes required to find the real solutions to things. It doesn’t take much for a parent to decide that something is crap or wont work, they need to open their minds to change.

Thank you everybody for all of your posts. All of your advice is really helping me. I may have the video up Sunday, I just got back from baseball. After I have the video up and running please let me know how I threw. Also the only angle for the camera to record my throwing was from first base so it might be a little hard to see my arm slot and everything.

A few questions:

  • have you been told by anyone in the past to throw over the top
  • is it something you saw someone else do and you simply tried to do it also
  • is this really just your natural motion?

A few questions:

  • have you been told by anyone in the past to throw over the top
  • is it something you saw someone else do and you simply tried to do it also
  • is this really just your natural motion?

Those are good questions…
A.) No I was not told to throw over the top by anyone else, but I had watched some major league and college games and picked it up from them. which also answers your second question.
C.) My natural motion is 3/4 but after throwing in a different position it’s hard to get back to that slot.

[quote=“SubwayJ”] Those are good questions…
A.) No I was not told to throw over the top by anyone else, but I had watched some major league and college games and picked it up from them. which also answers your second question.
C.) My natural motion is 3/4 but after throwing in a different position it’s hard to get back to that slot.[/quote]

When you were watching them, did you notice how many guy’s arm slot have been 12/6 in relation to the ground, but who’s shoulders were more like 45 degrees to the ground? IOW, they were “leaning” over toward their glove side, moving the arm more perpendicular to the ground.


If your current arm slot is causing you discomfort, then it would make sense to change that. But be aware that there could be other aspects of your delivery that could instead or in addition be causing the discomfort. That’s why it is important to post some video. Your discomfort could also be caused by an injury in which case you may need a medical evaluation.

If you h ave a medical condition, then that needs to be taken care of first. Then you can focus on mechanics and I would suggest focusing on getting the rest of your mechanics - and timing thereof - in order first and see how the arm adjusts. I feel adjustments to the arm made in this manner will happen more naturally than if you make arbitrary adjustments to the arm first.

I have no medical problems that has been causing this. And I have been watching them and they are leaning to the right but if you look at it in slow motion you can see their arm actually go through the 3/4 slot when they are almost perpendicular to the ground.
The video is not able to be downloaded to my computer due to a problem with compatibility. I am trying to get it hooked up ASAP