Checking out the clubhouse
Hodge throwing instruction
Any suggestions as to where I can find a link, or a site to get more information about the Hodge approach to throwing that has been referenced here?
Hope this helps? Search Mitch Hodge.Have asked the same question.Seems info hard to find. Have you tried SBFamily or Straightleg they have Howard Carrier throwing info which is great info for girls.
Here's a brain dump from 10 years ago, including Hodge stuff. most links are dead now. I like to do both forward and backward chaining, long toss and burnout. Hodge approach is forward chain. Nyman's is backward chaining and available from Wolforth's site as "backward shaping" drills.
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Jim et al-
Sorry.I have been busier than usual and haven't gotten around to the description.I am catching up today so here is a quick description of bare bones for teaching beginners(no habits to break) and intermediates(more of a challenge)up to about age 13.
1-wrist snap/grip.learn how to grip-3 fingers on top.thumb on bottom.pinky on side going along for ride.balanced pretty much between long finger on top and thumb on bottom.Relaxed wrist.Some air between ball and skin fold between thumb and first finger even in smallest hands.
learn how to create spin by rolling ball along fingers and off fingertips.snap wrist to do this and hold finish like in basketball free throw shooting-wrist fully flexed,fingers extended.Feel ball leave fingers between index and long finger as part of pronating release.build up hand/finger wrist strength withsqueezing or bucket of rice.get as much pure backspin/"tight spin" as possible.
DRILL-stand facing target,feet in concrete.glove hand down with elbow at hip, arm/elbow bent at 90 degrees,palm facing up.throwing arm "long"-extended with hand/wrist above head level and out in front a little.encourage idea of Bagonzi "throw over wall" for this and next drills by putting string/rope at waist level so they keep the hips where they are,lean torso forward and snap wrist with tight underspin.it helps to show pictures.a nice one is the Rocket clip under the forearm flyout thread in ppv for example.look for good spin.given the mass of the softball,it's very important to have the fingers behind the ball and not going off to the side.the ball breaks a lot and accuracy on throws in air and one-hoppers to plate will suffer if underspin isn't pure.
2-arm cock/getting to "W"/arm action/throwing over the wall/bow to throw/no hip slide.teach how to handbreak go from the "1" position-elevator/cradle/ball in glove to the "2" position-arm cock/"W" by "lifting and pinching" using the back muscles and leaving the forearms and wrists relaxed.preach symmetry,symmetry,symmetry.fingers on top in "W" position.then throw from "2" or "W" position explaining that torso turn brings arm up,whipping arm which will be controlled by wrist snap which they have already done.
DRILL-facing target,feet in concrete.rope still at waist.go from "1" to "2" as they turn torso from open to closed(reminiscent of Thurston drills).check the "W" position and see how they get there.(encourage arm exercises,monkey bars,chin ups,push ups.even bench presses that don't trap the scaps.)when they have this movement down have them throw.use sequence-"1"-"2"-pull(pull glove hand down to position in first drill)throw(over the wall/bow to throw,etc.)with wrist snap and perfect spin.
3-hip cock/adding lower body.2 ways to do this.first with "drop step".second with "crow hop".the body needs to get sideways and take the center of gravity straight(belly button) to the target while winding up/separating.
DRILL-drop step-stand sideways to target(glove side to target).step behind front foot with back foot(karaoke/grapevine type action) and show back to target without losing site of target.then step forward taking belly button straight to target.coordinate arm action "1" with first step and "2" with next step.scap loads as second step is taken.center of gravity goes to target while back continues to show to target.you usually don't have to mention anything about separating or foot plant or turning the hips or winding the rubber band(remember,hip turn and torso turn start in midair before foot plant with no hip slide after foot plant.I still use the rope to make them conscious of throwing over the wall.
so go through the sequence-step behind-"1"(arm)-step/center of gravity to target-"2"(arm)-pull the glove hand down-throw over the wall(wrist snap/perfect spin).
work on this for a while.they will,of course try to revert to the arm throw,but you can change them because all elements are different.for the arm throw they will not get sideways(torso keeps facing target),they will drop the back elbow(bad"W"),they will step open(clearing hips,center of gravity no longer going to target)they will drag/pause at high cock,they will keep the glove hand down or drop it early,they will throw with the front side flying open and the throwing arm going sidearm and pronating at release with curve ball spin and then bending over-throw then bow,not bow to throw and usually hit the wall(hip slide).
make them use the feet,show the back,get to the "W",take the belly button to the taget(variation of dreaded "balance drill with very wide board so emphasis not really on balance can help),pull down with the front side(not fly open)and throw over the wall with perfect underspin.
DRILL-crow hop.no rope.stand facing target.step forward with throwing side foot,swing glove side knee up while showing back to target and hopping onto throwing side foot,leaning back and elevating front hip.do this with arm in "1".take center of gravity to target while arm goes to "2".pull the glove arm down.throw over the wall with perfect underspin.gradually increase distance to maximum,throwing as far and hard as possible.This is where I introduce the concepts of "tempo"-start slow/speed up/always finish with great wrist snap.and "scaling"-all throws are the same(same relative timing of motor program)you throw farther by "getting bigger".big hop,big "W",big step,throwing over big wall.They have never thrown so far/fast and with reasonable accuracy considering this is new.they like that.practice one hoppers.maybe line throws/contests to work on hitting cut off-target on glove side.
DRILL-get closer,go back to drop step,throw back and forth hard and as quickly as possible,getting as close as you dare(we used to call this "burn out).remind to give target on throwing hand side to speed things up.
Try that on yourself and see how it feels.feedback appreciated.
Excellent stuff, Tom, thanks. I don't have Dr. Bagonzi's book and I'm not versed in Thurston's drills, but I think I get what you mean. My main questions about using it are relative to the feet. For 1 and 2, are their feet side-by-side facing front or do you have them set up by taking a step with their lead leg?
Also, 1 to 2 seems like it can be a big jump from the "W" to the extended arm "1" position. Do you have any problems with the beginners or the short armers with that transition? I know I've had my daughter (beginner) in the "W" and at times she'll still find a way to shot put. Is there a cue you use or something you have them focus on that gets them through it?
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The first drills are feet side by side facing target/feet in concrete.
In the second drill I work for a while just going from "1" to "2"("W") without throwing.The key is SYMMETRY.They can't get the elbow up without lifting and pinching both arms.Then they can start the throw by pulling the glove arm/front side.This will encourage them to snap the wrist out front(not back to the side throwing across the body).
Another important thing is going through the entire range of drills each time.Otherwise,they get too mechanical.
Karaoke is a great way to learn to rotate the body.For hitting too-look at the Babe-
Another point I forgot in my haste is the concept of "mapping" - the different body parts coordinating their motion.This can really help with the timing of getting to the "2".
For the crow hop drill you are having them progressively scale up and get bigger and throw farther while maintaining good technique.They need to step on the throwing side foot then hop on that foot while swinging the glove side knee up and leaning back and showing the back to the target without losing site of the target.They need to learn that the hands/arms need to be in the "1" position in tight to the body when the body rotates like this.Then to throw the farthest they need to take as long a step forward as possible(taking weight directly to target.The thing that allows this big step is coordinating it to going to the "2" position.They learn to delay going to the "2"(a desirable late hand/elbow break)until they take the big stride as this allows them to stay balanced.Most kids have the arm up way to early just sitting there ripe for dragging and forcing an arm throw.A long arm throw hurts.They are mapping the upper body move to the "W"(1 to 2) to the lower body stride.Once they coordinate this,they will learn the right timing and sequencing which they can carry over to the shorter drills.
Try it on yourself so you know the feel.
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Just wanted to check in with some feedback. I worked with my two kids (girl -6, boy - 8) this weekend using your progression. I found the drop step and crow hop mapping to be particularly effective (thanks!).
As I noted, my daughter the beginner struggles with throwing 'like a girl'. She had some trouble going from mastering the '1' position/drill to executing the '2'. I added a '1.5' and that seemed to help. Something like Epstein's short 3 idea for hitters - throwing arm (and everything else) out of the '2'/'W' and half way to your '1' position. Once she started to get it, I skipped through it (1 directly to 2) like ME does.
Thanks again for the great tips.
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Jim- The drills give a nice structure and vocabulary for making progress and on the fly corrections.
Once they have the basics of the drop step and crowhop down,you can have them work mostly on sequence and tempo.
For dropstep they say:"step-back-step-two-pull-throw"
step(throwing side foot behind glove side foot)
back(show the back without losing sight of target)
step(to target with front foot taking center of gravity to target)
two(lift and pinch into "W" as they step to target)
pull(down with the glove arm to start torso rotating)
throw(good wrist snap over the wall)
Most important is to "map" symmetric arm action into the 2 as (and not until) the forward stride is taken,getting to full "W"/scap loading just at the start of torso turn.
As they make progress,the main flaws become poor sequencing of the lift and pinch,poor symmetry/scap loading,and loss of tempo with deceleration.
Let me know your expeience.
With the crow hop,the sequence is:
step(forward with throwing side foot)
swing (the opposite knee up to load the hip)
hop(on the throwing side foot)
back(show the back and lean back without losing sight of target)
step(big step to target with stride foot,center of gravity to target)
two(big 2 with right timing)
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One other thought.In Drill 2,start with hands in "1" position,then turn the torso back,then go to "2" (W),then pull,then throw.
Don't go to the 2 until the torso has turned back.
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Those are two fantastic drills. That will help me alot with my boys. Thanks
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So far these are just ? poorly related chunks.I will try to describe an overall model of the throw that should help tie them together,but this may take a few days to find time to get it together.
In the meantime,I have tweaked the "release" drill above somewhat based on the model.
This would be the end of the throw and the first drill in the backwards chaining sequence,
Face target,shoulders and hips pretty much square to target.All weight on glove side(stride) foot.Throwing side(posting) foot behind stride foot,toe touching but not bearing weight.Glove elbow at side,palm facing up.Good grip.Throwing arm up about 12 o'clock.
"bow to throw"(see Nyman Kazmir clip).
Work especially on:
-Driving back knee to start throw(hip snap triggering final "bow".If you don't do this,back foot will tend to react/drag back instead of coming forward some with knee drive.Glove arm will tend to scisor back(bad) instead of torso bending forward to firm glove arm.
-Good full pronating release with perfect backspin and good wrist snap/release/rolling ball off fingers,good finger extension,staying behind ball.Even exaggerate pronation so palm ends up facing away from body.Release between index and middle finger preferred.Hand has to be properly angled to do this.
Work on wrist/hand strength with rice bucket.
More to follow.
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These devices address different mechanical areas and can be useful.
Understanding this stuff is important for your kids/players future.It is not easy.There is no quick fix.Hard work is necessary,but also knowledge which you must learn/believe yourself.
You still need to have some overall plan to determine how to use devices.For getting the overall picture I would recommend Nyman's explanations/principles.See www.setpro.com,go to "forums",go to "best of setpro",go to collegiate baseball news thread.Read CBN article.This gives enough principles/examples to figure out a program if you have experience and interest or know sopme one who does.
The basic gist of Nyman's explanation is that in the absence of trial and error playground learning at a very young age,learning good throwing ability/"mechanics" can be difficult(moreso with a big ball) and doomed to failure if the wrong kind of structured approach is used and followed.This wrong approach is all too common with people going to "experts" and learning methods which are ineffective or improperly implemented.(Another example of poorly structured learning would be the national team attempts to regiment/incorrectly structure hitting mechanics resulting in ineffective "linear mechanics" harming far more players than helping-many have now been through this and are starting to see the problem).
Coaches without a lot of experience can be more dangerous because they will accept suboptimal results which may doom a kid to failure/ineffectiveness/injury/mediocrity. These suboptimal mechanics can then become too ingrained to successfully reprogram/correct.
Even very experienced coaches,however,are unable to improve throwing ability in some because of the lack of understanding how the body learns skills and how the body produces a throw.They know what they need to see and they can do it,but they don't know how to teach it to latecomers or those with ingrained flaws.Often these coaches are fairly honest and just say you weren't born with the ability so don't expect to get it.
How many kids do you see who are really good enough players,except they have a weak arm and never get another look once they hit a certain level ? Too many,I think,because if the experienced coaches knew more about how to teach throwing ability,more kids would continue to progress to higher levels than do now.
There is a downside,of course,if you pick the wrong approach/principles,so you just have to do the best you can to stay objective and informed.You must do your due diligence.Learn the difference/relation between form and function,reductionism and wholism,skills and ability,rhythm and tempo,force and momentum,throwing and pitching,cues and reality,risk and reward,perception and interpretation, variability and specificity,stress and adaptation,goals and intent,etc.
Learn about mechanics and biomechanics and physiology and motor learning and motor control.If this stuff was easy anyone could do it/teach it.You owe it to your kids/players not to settle for less than helping see they achieve their potential.
Some important Nyman principles include the importance of throwing hard,the primacy of arm action, and the importance of doing the entire motion right from windup through release/followthrough.However,the way the body organizes itself to learn to do this is best learned(as you get older) one piece at a time from the end of the throw back.Starting at the beginning of the throw makes it much harder for the body to figure out how to master the entire motion.
Start with grip and release.The "spinner" can be useful for this.You need to learn a good grip/pronation/release/perfect underspin as the first piece of the power overhand throw.Then work back words,adding a piece at a time.This is called "backwards chaining" which works well for this type of skill which is "ballistic" and of "high organization",and "low complexity".
The throwmax creates awareness of throwing arm(humerus) motion and especially encourages throwing arm extension(humerus extended and abducted in shoulder socket) and 90 degree bend at the throwing elbow,both of which are mechanically important,however,that alone is not usually enough to get successful results or a good "return on training time".These aspects addressed by throwmax are most important for the arm cock and acceleration portions of the throw(which are then followed by the release/followthrough parts addressed by the "spinner"),but what happens earlier in the throwing motion is essential for these later parts to work.
The throwmax website has very misleading info about this with re-enforcement of the "high cock position" cue and presentation of the research based "biomechanical phases" of the throw which leave out the important parts of the early throw including how to cock/load the lower body hips and torso/shoulders prior to unloading dynamically so the arm loads THROUGH the high cock position before accelerating.It is also important to know how arm action synchronizes with lower body action throughout the throw.
This can be understood with Nyman's concepts of tempo,scap loading("W" position) and the bow arch bow sequence of trunk/spine and scapula/arm.
On the other hand, going TO the "high cock POSITION" is likely to create(unless you really know form and function) what overhand pitching coaches refer to as rushing(arm gets ahead of torso/shoulder turn).This means the throwing motion gets out of sequence.This shows how following such cues ruins learning/ability.Associated cues are then piled on top like"keep the weight back" or "slow your motion down" all of which re-enforce one another in messing up learning.Read Nyman's article.
For example,if we think in old fashioned terms,the hips deliver the shoulders,the shoulders deliver the arm,the arm delivers the ball,this go to high cock position "cue" gets the arm active before the shoulders have a chance to do their part.
You also need to keep working back to the beginning of the motion/windup.Prior to the hips turning the shoulders, the scaps need to be stable enough from loading to avoid excessive shoulder complex stress and to permit energy to flow effiecently through the body.
Prior to this,the hips/lower body need to load,and the arms need to break with the "fingers on top" or the "thumb pointed down" or,more accurately,with internal rotation of the back arm and perhaps some associated forearm pronation(avoid supination).
Arm action from handbreak through scap load should be largely symmetrical.
If you follow these principles,you can learn the right sequence and good mechanics which limit shoulder and elbow stress while allowing you to improve velocity and control.
In addition to the Nyman article and the throwmax page,In the past I have posted a link to a set of drills that one baseball pitcher used to recover from a "go TO high cock" program which limited his velocity to mid seventies.Using a series of "Backward chaining" drills,he was able to improve his arm action and increase velocity from mid seventies to 90 mph.This requires DOUBLING the power that accelerates the ball,and was accomplished in an older kid with very bad arm action habits.Check these out.
and same url:
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Arm action is the absolute key to throwing.The body goes through a series of overall throwing patterns(say begining in the first year of life) starting with just a wrist throw,then an arm throw and eventually a lower body throw.The last pattern the body goes through is a "catapult" stage before you finally get to the "promised land" of the "buggy whip".Kids have an excellent chance to get to the promised land if they start early under the supervision of someone who knows what it should look like or by emulating an mlb hero,given enough trial and error.If you are older,lack a good role model or get trained in bad habits,making progreess can be very difficult and you tend to get stuck in the "catapult" pattern.One way to look/analyze on video is "where Is the arm when the front/stride foot bears weight".In the catapult,the arm still has a lot of work to do.In the buggy whip,the arm is ready to throw.There are a surprising number of college kids stuck in the "catapult stage".Compare someone who doesn't have a super gun of an arm to a pro like Arod,for example, from stride foot plant to release and you can start to see the difference.The buggy whip is less stressful on the elbow and shoulder as well.(more later).
The best way to teach is going back ward and forward in the form of drills,then go to long toss then get closer and quicker with "burn out".
Nyman was the first to emphasize the backward chaining method,but the info is hard to get.Ron Wolforth at pitching central.com has a good video out on a series of these drills he "learned" from Nyman.Ron has the best accessible info I have seen(newsletters too).He has a number of excellent pitchers and they have benefitted tremendously from "backward chaining".Here is a brief description I have done to give an idea,but video is nice.See link.
Nyman's overload/underload program is the best for getting the max from your potential.If you are motivated contact/call him and get signed up.If you can't get his info.it may be best to avoid the over/under and just go with the backward chaining info.
Young kids can often make progress just with the full forward motion and progress to long toss if you know what you are doing,but it still helps to go through the backward piece by piece chaining drills as a point of reference and as a way of isolating and working on flaws.
The best beginning to end (as opposed to backward/end to beginning/piece by piece drills)info is on a tape by Jeff Hodge at BIOMECHNANIC BASEBALL,but may be no longer available.This is how I would put together his info.
Arm action is the key.The best/most consistent/least stressful mechanics require a smooth sequence of loading and unloading the throwing arm timed/coordinated well with overall body action.
The commonest flaw/mistake/problem is that kids break the hands wrong.Once you break the hands wrong you are dead.It is worth spending a lot of time on how to break the hands.The basic cue/description is:
Cet sideways to the target and then
Break the hands symmetrically with the elbows up and the palms down.Anatomically speaking what is important is simutaneous Internal rotation of the arms and legs as the hip cocks.This gets the throwing arm ball tightly into the shoulder socket whe you internally rotate the back arm and lift (abduct arms) the elbows to shoulder height.
Next as the stride foot goes out,you focus on Symmetric "scap loading" as the elbows finish lifting and the shoulder blades pinch symmetrically against the spine:
"lift and pinch"
This scap load phase is emphasized by Nyman.It connects the shoulder complex tightly to the torso.Then you have a tight ball in socket connection and a tight socket to torso connection and the ball elevated so it will clear the bottom of the rotator cuff.
So to repeat-Get sideways,then
1- break the hands symmetrically with the elbows up and the palms down(traditional cue-fingers on top)
2- lift the elbows and pinch the shoulder blades.
Next is the most important phase for timing/coordinating the upper and lower body as emphasized by Hodge:
"bring the throwing hand up as the stride leg turns over"
This is synchronized "external rotation of the lead leg and back arm" and properly coordinates overall body action.It also helps to teach internal rotation with hip cock and scap load with the stride leg going out(legs abducting),but the KEY is to have the throwing hand come up and the lead thigh turn over at the same time.This begins the smooth(uninterrupted) loading of the throwing arm via external rotation while at the same time coiling the spine as you prepare for rotation.
1- break hands with elbows up and palms down
2- lift and pinch
3- Bring the throwing hand up as the front thigh turns over
Next,the smooth loading/external rotation/laying back of the throwing arm needs to happen by torso rotation.The head needs to stay back until torso rotation is underway.The more you can coil the body before this rotation starts,the more power/velocity you will get in the throw.You accentuate coil by stretching the body as much as possible by internally rotating the glove arm and arching the back fully as you bring the throwing hand up as the thigh turns over before rotating then taking the head forward.Sometimes a cue like "get big" or "get tall" helps "scale things up" for max distance/velocity.
So remember for good velocity,stretch as much as possible then start rotation,then bring the head forward.
The next important feature is to land with the stride foot pointing to the target on a firm but flexed front leg.Pointing the toe means you have uncocked the hips and rotated the lower body open.The firm but flexed leg means that after acceleration and release,you will have a long deceleration arc to limit posterior shoulder stress.The smooth loading/external rotation of the throwing arm with good scap loading/connection will limit stress to the anterior shoulder.Elbow stress is limited by limiting "forearm twist" during the throw as well as by avoiding flexing of the throwing arm more than 90 degrees(don't bend throwing arm more than ninety degrees).In fact,it is important to have the arm bent at 90 degrees when it finishes laying back because this provides a maximum lever arm for internal rotation to primarily support the acceleration/arm whip as opposed to arm extension.The feel of internal rotation being primary(not fleion/extension) is the feel of "staying on top".This is unlike the typical "catapult" throw which limits whip by supporting it primarily with extension,preceded by deep flexion which is stressful to the elbow.
Hodge finds that kids usually break the hands and then extend the arms straighter than 90 degrees which is OK,but they need to feel the degree of bend at the elbow well enough to get it back to 90 degrees as the throwing hand goes up with stretching/coiling so the elbow is at 90 degrees as rotation of the torso starts.This is the principle behind the "throwmax device",not letting the elbow bend flex tighter than 90 degrees,enhancing feel.
1- break the hands symmetrically with elbows up and palms down
2- lift and pinch
3- when the throwing thigh turns over,the throwing hand comes up.Stretch the body as much as possible as this happens by keeping the lead arm internally rotated and arching the back.
4-Keep the head back and get the throwing elbow flexed at 90 degrees as the torso starts to turn which then lays back the thrrowing arm more.
5- Land on a firmly flexed front leg with the toe pointed to the target.Throw to target with full pronation of arm and pure underspin.
When it comes to video analysis,you will see what Nyman describes as the "buggy whip".The body flexes back and forth("flex/extend/flex" or "bow/arch/bow")like the handle of the whip.The forward motion of the whole body (but with head staying back until the torso starts rotating) and the sequential rotation of the hips/torso(Beginning of "Kinetic chain") blend linear and rotational momentum at foot plant(stride foot bearing weight.The stride foot blocks/resists and forms a base that finishes the arch of the spine and triggers the final bow of spine extension.The torso rotation lays the arm back,then the arm finishes load/layback/external rotation as the throwing scapula "unloads"(shoulder socket arcs forward).This finishes the laying back of the throwing arm which resembles a loop,ideally with 90 degree flex in elbow.Then the arm whips through to release driven/"supported" primarily by internal rotation and pronation,not flexion extension.This creates a quick whipping throw right after the stride foot comes down.This is a consistent throw with minimal stress as compared to the "catapult" where the arm is not "ready to throw" when the stride foot comes down.In the "catapult" case,the arm often flexes more(and more than 90 degrees) then whips less effectively supported primarily by flexion/extension with more shoulder and elbow stress.This is what can cause so-called "fore-arm flyout" which is then compensated by excessive forearm twist,preventing good pronation and stressing the elbow.
Video analysis shows the 2 things that correlate most with velocity are degree of internal rotation (how layed back arm gets so it can then internally rotate with acceleration/whip) and degree of "torso Drive" which is a measure of how moch the throwing shoulder comes forward/flexes with the "final bow".These are optimized by the buggy whip.
This combo of backward and forward training gets good results.Video analysis and radar/velocity/distance feedback provide useful info to measure/guide progress.
Pitching mechanics are very complex.
The best model is Nyman's "buggy whip".The body needs to flex back and forth like the handle of the buggy whip.During this time,the arm has to load so it forms the equivalent of a loop (external rotation with elbow at about 90 degrees).Then the handle flexes and whips the arm loop."Scap loading" is the key connection between the body/handle and the arm/loop.Here is some detail with emphasis on lead arm requirements.
Arm action,including the lead arm is a key to how the body overall oprganizes muscle action to emulate this physical model.
Arm action is ideally symmetrical at handbreak.You break the hands with symmetric internal rotation of the arms in the shoulder socket and keep the flex at the elbows symmetric as you lift the elbows and pinch the shoulder blades.You might "cue" this with instructions like "keep the fingers on top of the ball" or " break the hands with the elbows up and the thumbs down".
This loads the torso/scapulae and positions the arms for the next phase of loading which is when the throwing arm is going to begin laying back/externally rotating.Arm action is symmetrical up to this point.Next you need to use asymmetric arm action that encourages/permits the body to start twisting/coiling.While the degree of flex at the elbow remains symmetric and at about 90 degrees,the lead arm continues to actively internally rotate while the throwing arm starts to lay back/externally rotate.This action assists in keeping the torso closed while the hips are opening,creating body coil.You might cue this with instructions like "the throwing hand comes up when the front thigh turns over".This synchronizes the timing of the upper and lower body action.At the same time it is necessary to feel the stretch created by the lead arm staying internally rotated."Cues" become very individualized at this point.One such cue is used by ex-mets pitching coach Verne Ruhl as reported in College baseball news where you pretend the catcher has a hundred dollar bill in his glove and you,as the pitcher, "reach out and grab the money" with the lead hand which is a way of encouraging internal rotation/loading/twisting as the front palm is kept facing the target longer before the lead arm starts to "fold".The loading also continues at this point by the back arching from bottom to top while the head stays back.
Next,the throwing arm will continue its external rotation/laying back/loading as the torso does begin to rotate as the hips continue to open.The head should stay back until the torso rotation starts to lay the arm back,then the head can start forward(a good sequence to remeber to avoid "rushing").With regard to the lead arm at this point,the idea is that you will not want the energy of torso rotation to stay down in the torso,you want to get it to go up into the shoulder.The torso will not give up its energy to the shoulder and arm if it "overrotates" or "spins".For this reason you want to avoid any kind of "scissoring" action of the arms which encourages the torso to spin or overrotate as the glove arm is pulled back.This is why the lead arm action is described as if the lead arm is "holding on to a pole" so the body/torso comes forward to it as the arm folds instead of the torso staying back and the arms scissoring.This is probably what is being described as "having the glove where the stride is" as opposed to the glove scissoring back.
This next prepares for the bearing of weight of the stride foot to create a base that decelerates the turn of the hips and torso so that the body maximally flexes like the handle of the buggy whip,then unloads by the spine unflexing from the bottom up which unloads the throwing side scapula/shoulder socket.This unloading of the throwing side scapula finishes the laying back/external rotation of the throwing arm which then whips forward primarily by internal rotation.
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Pitcher's often have a heck of a time throwing overhand because they like to get and keep the arms extended after hand break,much like they do in the windmill.
While symmetric handbreak arm action is good,extended arms are not good for overhand throw,epsecially given the higher mass of the softball as compared to baseball. In baseball,some arm extension after handbreak is ok. In fastpitch it is probably better to try to keep the arms flexed about 90 degrees throughout handbreak and loading. The 90 degree angle permits better support,similar to the way a quarterback has to break the hands due to the heaviness of the football.
In all cases,the arm needs to get back to about 90 degrees of flex when it comes up to form an efficient arm loop for the body to whip.
The cue to "point to the target with the glove" is then VERY suboptimal for overhand throw. Much better to point with the lead ELBOW/keep arms flexed.This gives a pitcher something different to focus on to improve/shorten/quicken the overhand throw and distinguish it from windmill details.
When/if you read Nyman,you will appreciate the importance of arm action and scap sequence,and in fact if you do learn how to break the hands well symmetrically with a "lift and pinch",you will then note,due to the pinch that the front elbow will not point to the target unless you turn your torso/shoulders past square which I also think of a good thing to do to encourage good loading for rotation.When you lift and pinch,then you will get a good "W" position as seen from the bird's eye view and you counterrotate your upper body to the point of using the elbow as a site.This works pretty well for me.Foot action will have to be compatible.
Now,you also have a problem at the end of the motion which is a big problem since where your body wants to be at the wrist snap end of the motion is going to determing to a large degree how everything moved from very early in the motion.
This is where the "backward chaining" approach can be useful.In the power overhand throw (desirable "buggy whip" mechanics as described by nyman) the "rapid acceleration" phase of arm action is primarily via internal rotation which is begun most efficiently by whipping the arm loop when the elbow is flexed at about 90 degrees to creat efficient leverage.The arm then extends as it accelerates,but arm/forearm extension remains secondary to internal rotation in driving rapid acceleration.This may mean that the forearm pronates then the wrist flexes and fingers extend with a different action from the feel of the windmill fb release. So you will have to spend time starting with a different type of wrist snap and work backwards to train the body how this motion is best supported.The spinright spinner can help here. The wrist action is also very similar to free throw shooting release in basketball where the "put the hand in the cookie jar" cue is a good one.
If the player is trying to flex/snap the wrist instead,this will demand that the body drive arm acceleration prmarily by extension (after deep/more than 90 degree flxion) instead of the desired internal rotation/forearm pronation/wrist flex/finger extension.
So as you get familiar with the mechanical sequence,you can then focus on hanbreak and backward chain from release to improve overhand mechanics/distinguish it more from windmill.
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