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Arm speed, stride help

May 9, 2008
432
0
Hartford, CT
I have a 12 (LL 11 year old) year old pitcher. This is her second year pitching in our 9-12 LL softball leage (we have 4 teams in this age group, 40 feet, 12" ball).

She is very accurate....her speed is about 42-43 MPH. She is 5 Ft tall.
hips turn to ~ 45 when she pitches. drag foot approach with a very simple "rock back" pre-motion.

She a minimalist when it comes to motion. Not sure exactly how long her stride is, but it isn't very long. Her arm speed is also not very fast. Pitches well considering how little she moves.

Any ideas how to work on a longer more aggresive motion?

Her concern is that if she really moves faster harder faster she will lose her accuracy.....
 
May 7, 2008
142
0
throwing faster

42 * 5 will equal 210 over the fence when she start to face stronger 13-14 hitters!

Focus training seesions on throwing hard and accurate. She has to work through the loss of accuracy NOW and learn to do both. Most of that is mental. the idea of slowing down to get the ball across for a 3-2 count leads to lots of HR.



Some helpful drills are to draw a target zone for the stride foot to land in in front of the mound. Six to eight foot lengths out is usually good and compensates fo the player size. She should work to stride out to that zone.

Another drill what my daughter calls Happy Hooligans ( from the Adam Sandler golfing spoof) wher she pitches from a full run starting about 4 strides behind the rubber. This naturally drives stride length and arm speed.

Build speed up pitching to a catchnet at first to remove the frustration of not hitting the location and she build confidence in her longer stride and faster arm go back to a catcher.

With a longer stride her hips will naturally open further which she will need to throw drops and rises.
 
May 9, 2008
432
0
Hartford, CT
stride arm speed change up

These sound good to try ......
She'll be in this League next year as well.....

Part of it is definitely mental and part of her personality....she's not a very physically agressive kid.

Her major strength is that she never gets upset or rattled on the mound...no matter what is happening.


Also, wondering how all this comes in as she is working on a change-up as well. She's about 50-50 with getting them at this point.

She is very concerned about accuracy in her games because she wants to pitch as many innings as she can (there are about 4 pitchers on each of our 4 teams).

How often should she try these drills?
 
May 7, 2008
142
0
The stride length drill is no more stressful than any other pitch. So In my mind she should stive for the longer stride on every pitch she throws for the rest of her career. Do it in practice not a game or you will fry her ego and confidence. The happy hooligans are pretty tiring so its a 3 sets of 5 building to 3 sets of 10 kind of thing. max effort throwing at the end of a practice session.

Show her pictures of top pitchers throwing ... you will not see a cute smile on a single one. You will see gritty determination and fire burning in their eyes. Unflappbility is great but the best pitchers all have a certain desire to dominate.

As for her change 50/50 at 12 is pretty good. If she can throw 70% good changes thats great. Remember the change is making the batter think twice and setting them off balance. A perfect change that freezes them for a called third strike is a great thing to watch (for the defense) but to hear the oppossing coach screaming "watch change" on a 0-2 count puts that hesitation in a batter minds that leads to strikeouts and weak grounders is a great second choice.




These sound good to try ......
She'll be in this League next year as well.....

Part of it is definitely mental and part of her personality....she's not a very physically agressive kid.

Her major strength is that she never gets upset or rattled on the mound...no matter what is happening.


Also, wondering how all this comes in as she is working on a change-up as well. She's about 50-50 with getting them at this point.

She is very concerned about accuracy in her games because she wants to pitch as many innings as she can (there are about 4 pitchers on each of our 4 teams).

How often should she try these drills?
 
May 9, 2008
432
0
Hartford, CT
arm speed and change up

Funny...she struck out two in her last game with a third strike change up.
She also threw two that were about 20 feet high!

She is very precise and does well with repeatability.


Unlike the 9 year old who changes her pre-motion with every pitch (sigh).
She has a very long stride and great arm speed...just very little motion repeatability.
She has pitched two innings this season and walked one each inning.....same team as her sister in the 9-12 League.

Will work on the older one's stride and see how we do.
Rained out game today...two games this weekend!

Thank you for your help!





The stride length drill is no more stressful than any other pitch. So In my mind she should stive for the longer stride on every pitch she throws for the rest of her career. Do it in practice not a game or you will fry her ego and confidence. The happy hooligans are pretty tiring so its a 3 sets of 5 building to 3 sets of 10 kind of thing. max effort throwing at the end of a practice session.

Show her pictures of top pitchers throwing ... you will not see a cute smile on a single one. You will see gritty determination and fire burning in their eyes. Unflappbility is great but the best pitchers all have a certain desire to dominate.

As for her change 50/50 at 12 is pretty good. If she can throw 70% good changes thats great. Remember the change is making the batter think twice and setting them off balance. A perfect change that freezes them for a called third strike is a great thing to watch (for the defense) but to hear the oppossing coach screaming "watch change" on a 0-2 count puts that hesitation in a batter minds that leads to strikeouts and weak grounders is a great second choice.
 

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