Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Baseball Pitching - The Stride

By Martin Ellise

In Baseball Pitching, a Pitcher's Stride Length is a very important element in getting the pitch right. In this article I talk about how a baseball pitcher should stride.

A mechanical flaw in baseball pitching can lead to decreased performance and loss of power. And of course a lot of these flaws exist, which need to be identified and then, corrected proactively.

Stride Length:

The pitcher will start to stride forward after his knee is lifted to his chest. The proper technique to do it (assuming you are a right-handed pitcher) is with the side of your front foot facing the target and his toe pointing at 3rd base. This will enable you to keep your hips closed throughout the "expansion" of the lower body off the mound and to the target. A left hander should stride with his tow pointing at 1st base. It's also important to stride out with the front foot low to the ground. This keeps a pitcher's shoulders relatively level.

Hip Action:

One thing that needs to be constantly checked is the hip action during the stride phase of the pitching delivery. Most pitchers will either open their hips too early, or they don't open their hips at all. Both, of course, are mechanical faults that can cause a decrease in power.
For a proper pitching, stride out toward home plate leading with the stride foot, keep your weight on the back leg, and land toes to the target or slightly closed as opposed to open. Then, once that stride foot lands, it's the action of the "backside knee drive," thrusting forward and inward, that explosively rotates the hips, which rotates the shoulders and creates power.

Martin ElliseBaseball Pitching
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