Tuesday, January 15, 2013

A Beginners Guide to Pitching Mechanics

By

Every pitcher must understand pitching mechanics in order to be successful. Without proper mechanics you will be unable to throw high velocity, unable to throw accurately, and will likely suffer from long issues. As a pitcher, you must work to prevent such complications, so that you can succeed to the best of your ability.

So how do you develop good mechanics? First, I'm going to give you the honest truth. Developing great mechanics will not happen overnight and it's going to take an incredible amount of hard work. As long as you stay dedicated, you will undoubtedly improve.

Step One: Balance Point

This is one of the biggest mechanics misconceptions. You should NOT reach a point of balance at the peak of your leg lift. In fact, your weight should already be heading towards home. Examine any hard throwing pitcher and you notice several things at the peak of their leg lift:
  • their weight is already shifting
  • their drive knee is inside their drive hip
  • their lead hip is already driving towards home
  • and they are never perpendicular in a traditional balance point position

Obtaining a balance point is an old school way of thinking, and should continue to be.

Step Two: Back Leg Drive and Stride

The second most important element of your pitching mechanics is the back leg drive. Without back leg drive you will be unable to achieve stride speed and length, which are both responsible for velocity potential.

The key is to focus on driving towards home. Often times, pitchers will over collapse their drive knee, and consequently losing power or velocity. Never collapse your drive knee past the drive foot. If you are, then you are losing velo.

The only way to achieve effective stride speed and length is through an effective back leg drive.

Step Three: Hip to Shoulder Separation

Hip to shoulder separation is the significant mechanical piece to increasing velocity. According to the National Pitching Association, hip to shoulder separation is responsible for about 80 percent of potential velocity.

This separation occurs at foot strike when the lower half should be completely open towards home, and the upper half should still be closed. This is the ideal position. The greater the separation between the two halves, the more velocity you will be able to generate.

Obtaining more hip to shoulder separation should be your number one priority because it is the key to velocity.

Make sure you use a camera every time you're trying to improve your mechanics. This enables you to slow down and analyze this very complex motion.

Like I said earlier, just never give up. Developing great mechanics takes time, but the rewards will be amazing.
 
For more pitching instruction, be sure to visit: The Ultimate Pitcher
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Nathan_E_Gotch

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