I am looking for information on how to obtain a personal pitching coach, If anyone can provide me with some information it would be a great help.
Look in your local area for baseball facilities. Usually at these places they have instructors, and hopefully some good ones for you to choose from.
You might be able to find an NPA-certified instructor on the
To the individual who’s looking for a personal pitching coach: The most important thing is to find someone who really knows his stuff. The woods are full of those who can do and can teach, those who can’t do but who can teach, and those who can’t do either…the ones to avoid. Think a minute: exactly what are you looking for? General improvement? Things about mechanics? Repertoire? Pitching situations and how to deal with them? You need to consider all these things carefully before making a decision.
And, of course, there’s luck—and that was how, many moons ago, I found a pitching coach. I was sixteen at the time, and I had been thinking about the slider, a pitch I’d been hearing about a lot and had seen thrown in games, and I thought it might be a nice pitch to have in my arsenal. Then it occurred to me: maybe I could ask one of the Yankee pitchers about it…but which one? They all threw it. So I played hooky and went to a Monday afternoon game, and that was when it happened: without knowing just how I knew, I knew that winning pitcher Ed Lopat was the one I needed to ask. I did—with some trepidation, because I had no idea what to expect—and he drew me aside and showed me how to throw the pitch. The following year I ran into him again, outside Yankee Stadium, and the first thing he said to me was "How’s that slider coming along?"
That started it. I worked with him for a little over three years, and he was incredible. Here was a pitcher who, from his time in the minors, had been making a comprehensive study of pitchers and pitching, and he was willing and ready to share his knowledge and expertise with me. Now that was luck. You may get lucky and find a pitching coach like that—but they’re about as rare as hen’s teeth, so your best bet is to consider your requirements and find someone who knows what he’s doing and who can and will help you achieve your objective. 8)
Finding a pitching coach has to do with you as much as it does with the coach. You both bring a certain “pro forma” to the table. In other words, you both bring a level of talent, either expressed or assumed, and you both have experience levels that will either enhance or stagnate YOUR learning curve ( the quality and rate at which you absorb what’s being taught.)
If your at the 10-12 age group, your selection of a pitching coach is very different than that of a pitching coach that’s competent at the collegiate level. And I know my last statement seemed rather obvious…. but looking at the obvious lends itself to some pretty darn good choices in this matter.
So, if you will … please let me know what age group or range your in. 10-12, 12-14, 14-16, 16-18, 18… and older. Also, … and be honest here… at what level do you want to be at next? These two questions will help me suggest what to look for in a pitching coach. For example, if you’re in the 10-12 age group, and expect to be on a club that competes in your neighborhood park & recreation league and you really have no idea of what to expect beyond that experience (this is normal) then my suggestions will be suited for that involvement.
However, if you’re in an older age bracket, competing with a travel team (AAU, etc.) and you expect to make Legion or some other highly competitive ball club, my suggestions will be like night and day to the 10-12 age bracket.
Coach B, you make some very good points. A lot of it does have to do with how experienced a pitcher is. Someone who’s just starting out will require a different approach from someone like—well, me, at the age of 16, who had been playing for a couple of years and winning a lot of games but who wanted to be a more effective pitcher. The fact is, when a sixteen-year-old kid, be it male, female or two- headed-green Martian, asks a veteran major league pitcher about something like the slider, that is big-time serious. That is major league all the way. Lopat knew this, and he sensed that I was really interested, wanted to know, and was willing to work at it. So he took me in hand, worked with me—major league all the way—and helped me become a better pitcher than I had been.
Yes, there was luck involved—and also, perhaps, some ESP at work. From the beginning he and I were on the same wavelength, and it was actually a lot of fun—we bounced ideas off each other and actually learned from each other. I think this is essential, and if a kid happens to find a pitching coach where this sort of thing happens, color him—or her—very lucky indeed.