What age to use radar guns?


#1

Reading various websites including past posts on this site common advice seems to be “put away the radar gun”. Seems to me velocity is a goal along with running speed and other measurable skills. The only way to measure progress towards a goal is comparing from time to time where you are now as opposed to where you were. Don’t think anyone has a problem measuring a kids speed to first base with a stop watch to see how they stack up against others and how much progress has been made since last measurement. Just a little confused on the common advice to “put the gun away”. Can understand for younger kids but what is the age for bringing it out appropriate? My son was “measured” from time to time when he was younger and I bought my first radar gun when he was 14. I’ve never taken to a game and only outdoor practices a couple of times but we do use it frequently for his lessons. He reminds me to bring it on many occasions and likes the feedback. I never tell him speeds until he is finished with sessions. Velocity is a goal & I believe measurement over time is healthy. It’s kind of like planning for retirement; you have a goal & takes a while to get there. Would you never open your 401K statements to see how you’re doing?


#2

I always thought the approach most prevalent on LTP was to use a tool as a tool. Be responsible…I think where I see worry/concern is allowing kids to get out there and “try” to light it up when they aren’t prepared to throw with intent.
I see attitudes changing with time though, used as part of a kids development it certainly helps to understand where they are and where they are going.


#3

Agree with JD. Not a problem using a radar gun responsibly to guage development/progress over time. And definitely acceptable to measure fastball/change differential.


#4

I’m with Roger and JD on this as well


#5

Yep. Completely agree. Nothing wrong with using radar guns to gauge progress.
As long as parents don’t get wrapped up in how much harder “johnny” throws than “jimmy”. That’s when the gun can be counterproductive.


#6

My son’s former pitching coach used one all the time. To show kids where they were at, to “climb the ladder”, to show difference between pitches. When the gun is always there it loses its mystic.

He put it to it’s best use to show kids how over throwing doesn’t help. He’d ask them to “climb the ladder” past 100% to so hard you shit your pants. Almost inevitability the speed would be less than 90%, or even 80. Even at 10 yrs old it’s hard to argue with the gun.