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Thread: No leg drive slow motion

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    Default No leg drive slow motion

    Hey all......

    My DDs other coach has some issues with her form since we moved to
    a more of a leap and drag style pitching defined on here. Today her coach
    says she needs to speed it up....she is to slow, no leg drive. The coach is a proponent of slamming the hip through so this does look awkward to the coach. If my DD tries to speed up her motion, wouldnt that throw her timing off? How do you speed up your motion yet have the front foot 2" off the ground at 12 o'clock, then touching at 3 and so on? Do you take a shorter stride if you speed up your motion? Wouldnt shortening the stride reduce the leg drive even further?

    as always Thanks

    Mike

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    Super Moderator sluggers's Avatar
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    I'm not real clear on your question. I'm having difficulty even understanding what you are talking about.

    The arm doesn't move at a constant rate of speed during the pitching motion.

    The arm moves fast from 12 o'clock to release. It doesn't move fast as it moves to the 12 o'clock position. So, she adjust how long it takes for her to move her arm to 12 o'clock. She then pulls down with her elbow to start the downward motion when her left foot is a couple of inches off the ground.

    Can you rephrase your questions?
    Ray

    Every softball parent keeps a hockey mask and a butcher knife in their car...

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    I can talk softball all day go4fpsb's Avatar
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    Sponge, Sluggers is on track here per usual. I always tell my pitchers the stride is a timing mechanism for your arm. If you know your arm should be between around 11 o'clock position at toe touch and 9 o'clock at heel plant then your brain will tell your arm to speed up and catch up with your feet if the stride is quicker. Obviously if the arm doesn't speed up in tandem with the stride then timing is going to be out of sync.

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    Default me too

    Slugger...I confuse myself at times.....

    Ok...those comments make alot of sense.

    Inconsistancys...

    Coach (not instructor) says speed up your motion. My DD has a backswing with both arms. Coach says you should swing back as hard and
    as fast as you swing forward. Speed the whold thing up. We are not biting on this cause it seems you are putting energy into a move that is away from the plate.

    We practice what slugger commented on. The arm circle is not consistant. From 12 oclock to release is when the arm moves the fastest.


    I keep hearing if you want more power....one way is to increase the speed of your arm circle. (I assume this means from 12 to release).

    Is it true to say the first 1/2 of your arm circle is to time so that toe touch is at 1 to 2 oclock? So if my DD has a shorter stride and timing is good and she wants to stride out further to get more leg drive the first 1/2 of her arm circle would slow (since she is striding further) so that toe touch stays at 1 to 2 oclock?

    12 oclock to release. Ive studied and read on this so I understand the motion and timing. Will it increase speed to speed this 1/2 up? Would this cause a more explosive release as I would assume your overall finish including your legs would have to speed up.

    She really wants to feel more leg drive....

    Hope this makes sense this time....Thanks for the comments

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    Super Moderator sluggers's Avatar
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    This is going to get awfully detailed...

    The goal in pitching is to accelerate the tips of the fingers touching the ball to the fastest speed possible. The speed of the pitcher's fingers at release determines how fast the ball will go. The goal in pitching is not to accelerate the arm to the fastest speed possible, the goal is to get the finger tips moving as fast as possible.

    Did you know that a person can accelerate something to the speed of sound using only his body? Every time you crack a whip, the tip of the whip exceeds the speed of the sound, creating a mini-sonic boom. When you crack a whip, are you focused on moving your arm as fast as possible? No. You are focused on creating an energy wave that moves through you body, down your arm and to the whip. The energy wave is a series of sequential motions of the body, shoulder, upper arm, forearm and wrist. It is the same thing as pitching.

    New people who start looking at the fastpitch motion see it as a series of linked levers. An example of linked levers is the drive train on a steam locomotive. The logic goes "spin the first lever as fast as possible, then all the other levers are going to spin faster".

    But, that is not the way it works. The arm is not made of steel. It is made of bone and muscle tissue. Mechanical engineers would say that the arm is deformable. So, think of the arm as a rubber band. There is a video of Yuki Ueno on this board. Look at her arm during a pitch. Does it look like some steel rods riveted together or a rubber band?

    Is it true to say the first 1/2 of your arm circle is to time so that toe touch is at 1 to 2 oclock?
    Yes. Your DD's arm speed for the first half is determined by how hard she pushes off, because that determines how much time there is until her foot comes down. When her toe touches, then she pulls down with her elbow.

    So if my DD has a shorter stride and timing is good and she wants to stride out further to get more leg drive the first 1/2 of her arm circle would slow (since she is striding further) so that toe touch stays at 1 to 2 oclock?
    Yes. Note that the farther she takes the arm back, the more distance the arm has to travel to get to 1 oclock, therefore requiring her to speed up her arm.

    "12 oclock to release" Will it increase speed to speed this 1/2 up?
    I think you are asking, "If you increase the arm speed from 12'oclock to release, will that increase the speed of the thrown ball?"

    In a way, that doesn't make much sense.

    From 12'oclock to release, she is "cracking the whip." There is a whole system of movement involving the shoulders (the right shoulder rotates down), the upper arm (continues to rotate to 6 oclock), the forearm (rotating through 6, and also rotating on an axis perpendicular to upper arm), the wrist, and fingers. You want this entire system to move in sequence quickly to get the fingers to move as fast as possible.

    So, the answer to your question is, "Yes, as long as all the other parts move in sequence."

    I pray that this is for your own information, and that you are not going to try to talk to a 13 YOA girl to explain pitching.
    Ray

    Every softball parent keeps a hockey mask and a butcher knife in their car...

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    EXACTLY what I was looking for...

    Thanks Slugger and GO4.....

    I will not feed my 15 yr old all of this information. The arm whip and the
    leg drive are things she says she doesnt feel yet. This lets me understand
    how it should be.....now the adventure of practicing untill she gets it...

    Thanks again....

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    To get the idea of the "arm whip", you might consider going down to a lake or pond and show her how to skip rocks. It is a similar motion.
    Ray

    Every softball parent keeps a hockey mask and a butcher knife in their car...

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    I can talk softball all day go4fpsb's Avatar
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    Sponge, The only thing is would add to the above is this, if your DD is going through her pitching motion, she gets to the toe touch and heel plant phase of the windmill and it feels like there is a pause or gap in the motion before she starts pulling down, well she got to toe touch / heel plant with her arm not far enough into the circle. It feels almost like being on a roller coaster going up the first hill, the coaster almost stops, there's a pause and then it hurtles down the other side. You don't want that feeling.
    By getting her heel down early, with her arm straight up she has lost all the momentum the stride, the heel plant, the hip drive into the front side might have generated. Hope that analogy makes sense.

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    I can talk softball all day bwalk63's Avatar
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    this is actually something we have been working on for the past 6 months. The question I have is if she is having problems getting to say 11:00 at toe touch and 9 at heel plant can't she start her arm sooner and delay her drive off the mouth which will get her arm to the correct position without speeding up her arm at the beginning? Does this make sense? Or what about lifting the stride leg higher which will keep it off the ground a fraction of a second longer. My DD drives out really well and has a pretty good stride but sometimes her arm just doesn't make it to the correct postion at toe touch, so she will speed up her arm at the beginning to make up for that, but then her arm is no faster on the way down than it was on the way up. It is just something she works on alot to try and gain any more speed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bwalk63 View Post
    this is actually something we have been working on for the past 6 months. The question I have is if she is having problems getting to say 11:00 at toe touch and 9 at heel plant can't she start her arm sooner and delay her drive off the mouth which will get her arm to the correct position without speeding up her arm at the beginning? Does this make sense? Or what about lifting the stride leg higher which will keep it off the ground a fraction of a second longer. My DD drives out really well and has a pretty good stride but sometimes her arm just doesn't make it to the correct postion at toe touch, so she will speed up her arm at the beginning to make up for that, but then her arm is no faster on the way down than it was on the way up. It is just something she works on alot to try and gain any more speed.
    I teach the stride knee and both arms come out together during the stride. Don't mess with changing basic mechanics. I believe you have to feel when it is time to bring the stride foot down. Explode out, imagine you are striding over a small box to get to your landing spot and then bring the foot fast when the arm gets just past circle peak. Sluggers has a good drill to reinforce the timing of arm position to toe touch. If he doesn't repost it here, look for it. You mention she drives out well so do some speed work to get arm speed up. Do sets of five throwing regular weight, over weight, regular weight then either under weight or whiffle, all at max speed. The over weight should be no more than a couple of ounces heavier. Do these at the end of her practice when she is tired to build speed and strength.

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